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Federer Does This When He Sees Duckworth...

Aussie dishes on the stars he'd like to share dinner with and more
July 19, 2023
James Duckworth defeats Constant Lestienne on Tuesday in three sets to reach the second round in Newport.
Kate Whitney Lucey/International Tennis Hall of Fame
James Duckworth defeats Constant Lestienne on Tuesday in three sets to reach the second round in Newport. By Andrew Eichenholz

Australian James Duckworth is competing this week at the Infosys Hall of Fame Open in Newport, where he will play #NextGenATP American Alex Michelsen for a place in the quarter-finals.

ATPTour.com caught up with the 31-year-old to learn about the Australian off the court and find out what Roger Federer does when he sees Duckworth.

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If you could have dinner with any three people who would they be and why?
My favourite golfer is Jordan Spieth. I've been following him closely the last few years so maybe him. Have got to go with an NFL player, so I'll go [with] Josh Allen. And then Andrew Johns, a rugby league player.

If you could switch places with anyone for a day, who would it be?
I was just in Chicago last week. It would have been pretty cool to be Michael Jordan there when he was in his prime.

Do you remember watching him play?
I've only watched on YouTube and highlights and I obviously watched The Last Dance.

What was your pinch me moment on Tour?
Playing Roger for the first time, that was pretty cool, at the Aussie Open. It was weird [to play] someone that I'd watched on TV for years and years and someone that I'd looked up to for so long. It was also a similarly strange feeling [when] I played Lleyton [Hewitt] at the Aussie Open as well. That was just odd a little bit.

I have heard a story about Roger quacking at you. What is the story behind that?
Yeah, Rog does that when he sees me. When I played him at the Aussie Open the crowd was quacking and he thought it was pretty funny.

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What is your favourite non-tennis memory?
One of the coolest things that I ever went to was the World Cup Qualifying Match [when] Australia played Uruguay in Sydney in 2004 or 2005. We won in a penalty shootout. That was a pretty cool atmosphere being there for that.

What is something fans might not know about you?
[I do] cooking at home. My fiancé never cooks, so I do all the cooking.

What is your favourite dish to cook?
Nothing fancy. It's usually some sort of meat and vegetables. I think I do a pretty good balsamic brussel sprouts. They're pretty good.

If you could achieve one thing what would it be?
Win a Grand Slam.

What's the coolest perk of being a pro tennis player?
Just playing the big tournaments, big crowds, playing in front of the fans.

Have you ever gotten to go to like a certain game because you're a tennis player?
I mean yeah, I've been to a few rugby games to support the team of Newcastle, a few of their games.

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