The Nomadic Life With... Miomir Kecmanovic
Editor's Note: This story was originally published on 20 January 2022.
Miomir Kecmanovic upset sixth seed Matteo Berrettini on Wednesday to reach the quarter-finals of the BNP Paribas Open. The Serbian's only previous ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final also came at Indian Wells, in 2019.
Learn more about Kecmanovic's life off the court in this edition of ATPTour.com's 'Nomadic Life' series.
What are two essential non-tennis items you always pack for trips?
A face mask, hand sanitiser, those are the two biggest things right now. I need my phone, iPad, headphones, maybe some snacks, something like that. The neck pillow. Those are the essentials.
What item did you forget to bring one time that caused you distress?
Nothing big. Actually, once I packed the wrong strings for the trip but other than that maybe some clothes or something.
Do you enjoy travelling the world or consider it just something that needs to be done to be a pro tennis player? If you do enjoy it, what do you enjoy about travelling?
I don't enjoy it as much now as I did before [the pandemic], but I love to travel. You get to see so many cool places, so many different things. It's pretty cool to see so many things at such a young age.
Can you talk about a time you decided to play a specific tournament in part because you wanted to travel to that city?
I’m saving that for later in my career when I'm getting older and getting closer to retirement. Then I'll pick where I'll go because of the sites.
What is your favourite tournament city to visit and why?
I liked Acapulco, that was pretty good. The big ones are Miami, Paris, New York, Melbourne. All the big cities are amazing.
Is there a landmark or somewhere on the roads that was super cool?
Maybe the Colosseum or the Eiffel Tower. I haven't been to many of the World Wonders, but I definitely want to go to Machu Picchu, that's on the bucket list.
Photo Credit: Peter Staples/ATP Tour
Where is your favourite vacation destination?
Just somewhere where there's sea. Acapulco was amazing. I used to go a lot to Croatia. The coast is amazing there. I've also been to Montenegro once, it was amazing, but I want to go to the Maldives. That's the next one.
What is your craziest travel story?
[Last year] to get to Cordoba I took a 50-hour trip, so that's topping my list now. It took forever to get there. [That took] a lot of movies, a lot of sleeping and just trying not to sit the whole 50 hours. The trip was Melbourne-Doha, then a three-hour waiting time, then Doha-Amsterdam, six-and-a-half hours, then Amsterdam-Buenos Aires we waited six hours in Buenos Aires and then to Cordoba.
There was the one time we came to a Futures event in Florida, we rented a house, Airbnb, everything looked good. The house looked big and then we got there and the guy had just rented out the garage and he just put pictures of the house to attract some people there. We slept in the garage for two weeks.
As a tennis player, maintaining your body is of the utmost importance, so how do you take care of it during long trips?
I try to lay down as much as I can because sitting my back starts hurting. I try to lay down if I can and maybe stretch a little bit when I get out to maybe loosen up.
How do you try to overcome jetlag and acclimate to the local time zone?
I just try to push through it. The first couple of days are crucial. When you get there and it's 5 p.m. and you want to sleep, that's when you’ve got to resist. Just get to that 10-hour mark, then you're good.
Do you prefer the sense of novelty and excitement of a tournament in a city you’ve never been to before or the comfort and familiarity of cities you know well?
I like to go to places that I already know, where you know everything. Even the new places, once you've figured everything out, it's always amazing.
Got any tips to get comfortable on a flight? And how do you pass the time?
The good opportunity that I have is that I can afford to fly business on the longer flights, so that's a really big plus. But when I travel in economy, I try to find as soon as there's an open spot just take one where there are two to three seats. Got to have the neck pillow always, the socks that go up for the veins, for pressure. [You have to] wear comfortable clothes - no jeans.
Are you someone who gets to the airport with lots of time to spare or do you cut it fine?
Early. I get nervous that maybe there are a lot of people, maybe a queue. ‘What if we miss it?’ So I always like to be a little bit early. I’ve missed a flight, but because of the connection, not because it was my fault.