‘It Acts As A Memoir’: Tsitsipas Opens Up On #StefTheTweeter
Stefanos Tsitsipas’ passion and drive have made him one of the most feared competitors on the ATP Tour, yet the World No. 5 is also renowned for his relaxed off-court demeanour. This is clearly reflected in the 23-year-old’s Twitter feed, where he regularly shares a mixture of humorous, philosophical, and heart-warming messages.
“They are mostly meant to be fun,” Tsitsipas recently told ATPTour.com. “It’s like I have a wall and I write different things, and people can say their stuff. It’s just such a fun thing to do. I like the fact that I can look back to them in one or two years and I have a feed where I can preview all my past quotes and opinions I might have had. It kind of acts as a memoir.”
Tsitsipas has moved confidently to the third round this week at Wimbledon, where he faces Nick Kyrgios in a blockbuster third-round clash on Saturday. The Greek has won a Tour-leading 42 matches in 2022, and admitted his ability to keep calm under pressure has been a key factor in his success on Tour in general. This is a sentiment that was reflected when he tweeted out the message, “The quieter you become, the more you can actually hear.”
The quieter you become, the more you can actually hear.— Stefanos Tsitsipas (@steftsitsipas) December 13, 2021
“I think sometimes you just need to... listen, absorb as much information as you can, and you can always just pick whatever you want," Tsitsipas said. "You’re always allowed to pick your information that you want to keep for yourself.
“It kind of came to my mind during practice. There are times when you really feel like talking and analysing everything, and once you start becoming a little bit quieter, you can process information much more fluidly and much faster, and just everything works better.”
An elbow injury during the 2021 Nitto ATP Finals in November cast doubt on Tsitsipas’ participation in this year’s season-opening Australian swing. Yet the Greek showed no signs of rustiness on his return, representing Team Greece at the ATP Cup before storming to a fifth Grand Slam semi-final at the Australian Open. While Down Under, Tsitsipas familiarised himself with some the country’s renowned wildlife, and one creature in particular caught his eye.
“There was a conversation going on about the beautiful animals in Australia,” Tsitispas said. “Kangaroos are a very stereotypical thing that will always come to your mind when you think of Australia, but I did some research, I wanted to see what kind of animals Australia has that I’d never heard of. There were also dingoes, which I saw in one of the videos.”
Yet on 8 January, Tsitsipas announced "Platypus is my spirit animal" via his Twitter feed. With so many weird and wonderful options to choose from, what characteristics of the platypus appealed to the Greek?
“It’s a very humble sort of animal, not very noisy,” Tsitsipas said. “It’s cute. Also, as a kid I was a big fan of Phineas and Ferb, the TV show for kids, and Perry the Platypus was the hero there. I always loved him, he was one of my favourite characters, so that’s why."
Platypus is my spirit animal— Stefanos Tsitsipas (@steftsitsipas) January 8, 2022
Just a few weeks ago, Tsitsipas shared the message: “The future generations studying history will likely have to study tweets.” What would future historians studying his feed conclude about the nine-time tour-level titlist?
“[They would probably see] a fun side of me that sometimes requires less thinking than when I’m with other people and I have to instantly answer or say something that doesn’t leave me with much gap of thought,” Tsitsipas said. “I sometimes get creativity and those put those extra thoughts out there that I feel like I might have neglected or didn’t share enough of.
“It is kind of my own media place, where I can just express anything I want. If I might have any concerns about our world, and how this world operates and how this world functions, I might address it there."
The future generations studying history will likely have to study tweets.— Stefanos Tsitsipas (@steftsitsipas) June 4, 2022
Tsitsipas enjoys expressing himself via social media, but the 23-year-old is also aware of its downsides.
“I think as long as you use it once or twice a day, it is healthy,” he said. “The excess is the problem. Once you start picking up your phone and going straight to a social media platform to feel less bored, that’s not a good indication or sign.
“We need to use social media to express ourselves, we need to use social media to put out good content that will inspire others and make them want to pursue something in life. Social media is all about bringing people together, connecting people, and it kind of feels sometimes like it does the opposite to that to everyone around us.”
When it comes to his own social media use, Tsitsipas is careful to maintain a healthy balance, an approach he also encourages in those close to him.
“Just less social media," he said. "Use it only when you have to use it, to do something really important. By decreasing, you can actually add more value to your life, I think. You can be more present in your everyday life and the important tasks that you have to fulfil, the things that you want to pursue. It can keep you behind if you spend too much time on your phone. It can be a really serious addiction.
“I have never really been on that side of social media addiction, but you are always one step away from it. My screen time is not that much, and I always try to push my siblings not to spend too much time on their phones. As an older brother it’s my responsibility to give a different perspective on how these things work.”