Read & Watch: 5 Things To Know About Munar, Who Qualified For Milan
Jaume Munar comes from one of the best-known islands in the tennis world: Mallorca, land of World No. 1s. Two of the three players with a Spanish passport who held or hold the No. 1 spot in the ATP Rankings hail from that island: Carlos Moya and current No. 1 Rafael Nadal.
Munar, however, is far from being overwhelmed by that heritage. The 21-year-old has followed his own path to break into the Top 100 of the ATP Rankings this season. And on Thursday, he qualified for the Next Gen ATP Finals, the 21-and-under event to be held 6-10 November at the Fiera Milano.
Here are five things to know about 'Jimbo':
1. He Has A Very Special Bond With Nadal
Munar trains at the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar. But that is not the only link that binds him to Nadal, who advises and shares his knowledge with the #NextGenATP player whenever he can.
Like his mentor, Munar loves spending time at the sea and playing golf, two of the things that relax him the most and make him switch off from everything when he is at home. The first thing he does when he returns from tournaments is go for a walk around Puerto de Cala Figuera, his hometown and favourite place in the world.
Nadal has followed the progression of the young player of Santanyí and has even watched some of Munar's matches in person. The young Spaniard also has Tomeu Salvà, one of Nadal's best friends, as one of his coaches (Pedro Clar is also part of his coaching team).
2. He's The Youngest Spanish Player in the Top 100
Spain has 10 players in the Top 100 of the ATP Rankings. A golden generation that has Munar as the youngest of a group includes the likes of Pablo Carreno Busta, Roberto Carballes Baena, Roberto Bautista Agut, and of course, Nadal, the holder of a record 33 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles.
3. He Is A Member Of The Real Club de Tenis Barcelona
The Real Club de Tenis Barcelona, a historic club in which the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell takes place, has Munar as its member. The 21-year-old is part of the club where players such as Nadal, Fabio Fognini, Pablo Carreno Busta, Feliciano Lopez, Tommy Robredo and #NextGenATP Russian Andrey Rublev are also members. Rublev beat Munar in the 2014 Roland Garros junior boys' final.
4. His First Grand Slam Win Came Against An Idol
Munar's first Grand Slam win as a professional came this year in memorable and dramatic fashion. Munar won his first-round contest at Roland Garros by beating his idol David Ferrer, 2013 runner-up and former World No. 3.
The Majorcan, who qualified, made an epic comeback from two sets to love down and 3-5 down in the final set. Although his stay at Roland Garros ended when Novak Djokovic beat him in the second round, Munar took advantage of the great experience in Paris and used the momentum to later win consecutive titles on the ATP Challenger Tour, in Prostejov and Caltanissetta.
5. He's A Motivated Learner and An Avid Reader
Munar enjoys reading a lot in his free time and seeks to continue learning whenever he has time. He started studying economics at university, and although he had to stop because he spends long periods away from home on the ATP World Tour, Munar does not miss the opportunity to continue learning through reading and documentaries.