Taylor Fritz: 'I'm Nowhere Near Where I Want To Be'
For Taylor Fritz, 2019 was a year of firsts. He won his first ATP Tour title in June at Eastbourne, and cracked the Top 25 of the FedEx ATP Rankings for the first time in August. But while the American was happy with his season, he’s not ready to stop there.
“I just feel like I’m nowhere near where I want to be or where I should be,” Fritz said. “So I want to keep wanting to get better, wanting to beat more people, wanting to be higher-ranked.”
Fritz spent his off-season in his home state of California, doing everything under his control to strive for more, whether that involved cleaning up his diet — eating meals such as egg whites with avocado for breakfast — to working nonstop on his game on the court and his fitness off of it.
“Maybe before, the little stuff didn’t make that much of a difference. But I feel like now, for me to keep moving forward, I need to really commit in pretty much every single way, so I’m just trying to do everything I can,” Fritz said. “Going into the off-season for me, it’s just the time to do everything right and make the most of every single day to get better and train, because everyone else is doing it. So I think my mindset every morning is just to train as hard as I possibly can so when I get done that day, I could believe that I outworked everyone else.”
Gena Ball, a USTA Strength & Conditioning Coach, is one of those who worked with Fritz on his physical conditioning during the off-season, and she said that the American left no stone unturned.
“When he’s given details that he needs to have, he tries to hit them like that. If he feels like that wasn’t a good rep, you’re going again,” Ball said. “He’s not going to let you say that was good, he’s going to do one more.”
Fritz is also trying to improve certain aspects of his game on the court. The 22-year-old World No. 32 feels that since the best players in the sport tend to be some of tennis’ best movers, he needs to improve how well he finishes points. That is something one of his coaches, David Nainkin, agrees with.
“We’re working on his transitional game,” Nainkin said. “Recognising opportunities where he could come forward a little more, how to utilise his powerful groundstrokes to finish some points up at the net.”
Another one of Fritz’s coaches, Paul Annacone, believes that this season, Fritz could not only continue where he left off in 2019, but continue improving.
“2020 is really about growth,” Annacone said. “Laying the seeds to grow and then sprinkling some great gold-dust on it and watching it grow.”