Kyle Edmund, a British teenager ranked ranked among the world’s top 300, will make a wild-card appearance at this month’s Sony Open in Miami, one of the most important tournaments after the Grand Slams.
Edmund spoke to Wimbledon.com about his ambitions for the future and for this summer’s Championships at the All England Club, as well as about how he has learned from being around Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and from travelling with former US Open finalist Greg Rusedski.
How are you feeling before playing in Miami?
“I’m feeling excited and looking forward to competing. It’s such a great tournament and will be a great experience for me to play there.”
How would you assess your year so far?
“My year has gone well for me so far, reaching three finals and winning two tournaments. I have also had the opportunity to play in a couple of ATP Tour events and soon I’ll play in another in Miami, which will be great for my experience.”
What are your ambitions for the year, including at Wimbledon?
“I want to continue to improve my game and keep learning. I obvioulsy want to keep on improving my ranking as well but I don’t have any specific targets. This year is the first year out of juniors so I can only play in the senior event at Wimbledon, I will be doing my absolute best to do as well as I can this year and take as much as I can away from the experience.”
What have you learned from being around Andy Murray? What advice has he passed on?
“I am very fortunate that I have had the chance to spend some time with Andy on and off the court, it’s been great for my game to see what he does and pick up little tips for my game and also to receive some advice from him as well. It‘s exciting to see what he's doing. Andy’s a great role model.”
Have you spent any time on or off the court with other leading players? What did you learn from them?
“I spend a few weeks a year with Greg Rusedski, travelling to tournaments. He's great to have on the road, especially after he has done it for so many years and did very well in his career. I find he is good helping out with game plans going into matches. He keeps it simple, which I like. He has also helped with my game since i was around 15 so we have a good relationship.”
Has the transition from junior to senior tennis been tougher than you imagined?
“I knew it would be tough transition, so it didn't surprise me but I knew that I had to put a lot of hard work in if I was to be able to make it to the top of the game. Physically, I’ve found it tougher compared to the juniors, so I’ve invested more time getting fitter and stronger.”
Which areas of your game are you hoping to improve this year?
“I’m hoping to improve all areas of my game. It’s important to train and improve everything in your game because the best guys in the world have very little weaknesses. So to be able to play against them means you can't have downfalls in your game otherwise it will be tough to compete against the top guys.”
How do you make sure you stay mentally fresh?
“I try to take my mind off tennis by doing something I have an interest in off the court. That’s football – Liverpool – and Formula One, cars, music and reading autobiographies. Then when it comes to tennis, my mind is ready to go and not stale from thinking about tennis all the time.”
20:24...But boy, it was a barrow-load of fun. I hope you enjoyed it even half as much as we did. Thank you for all your messages throughout, you've been the glue holding us together as the edges frayed amid the madness. Now if you'll excuse me, it's time for us Brits to raise a toast to Andy Murray and Fred Perry. British sporting legends both.
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