Casper Ruud Is Norway’s Answer to His Father

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In October 1995, Christian Ruud became the best-rated Norwegian tennis participant ever. He was No. 39 in the planet, attained the round of 16 at the 1997 Australian Open up and represented his place at the Olympics 3 times.

It took about 26 decades, but in February 2020 Ruud’s position was eclipsed — by his son, Casper, 22, who has obliterated his father’s achievements, successful 4 ATP clay-courtroom tournaments this calendar year, and arrived at a job-higher No. 10 rating.

The previous No. 1 junior participant, Casper Ruud dropped in the 2nd spherical of the United States Open to Botic van de Zandschulp, an eventual quarterfinalist. But, his stellar time prompted Bjorn Borg to include him on his 8-male European workforce in the Laver Cup. His father is his coach.

The following dialogue has been edited and condensed.

Do you recall the initially time you defeat your father?

Indeed, I do. I was 14 or 15, but my dad thinks I was 16. We experienced expended a yr enjoying tournaments all around Europe, so we stayed household the subsequent year to work on my physique and producing my character on courtroom. On the weekends, we would attempt to play a tiny little bit versus each individual other.

Right after a pair of attempts, I beat him 6-2. He was not far too delighted due to the fact he did not engage in effectively. He gave it absent with a ton of issues.

You’ve experienced most of your good results on clay courts, but the Laver Cup is indoors on a tricky court. How will you adapt?

My sort of sport suits the clay greater. The way I strike the ball is with a quite very good quantity of topspin. It is a major ball that bounces up from the clay courts. But I should not ignore that I grew up 50 % the yr enjoying indoors on a hard courtroom because Norway is a chilly place.

Your Laver Cup teammates will be among the most effective in the earth. If you could choose 1 stroke from Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev, Andrey Rublev and Matteo Berrettini, what would it be?

From Medvedev, I would love to have his return of serve. With Zverev, the backhand is really phenomenal. I assume Tsitsipas has obtained terrific hand skills on the web and fantastic volleys.

It is tricky with Rublev and Berrettini simply because they have lethal forehands, but I’m going with Rublev’s forehand and Berrettini’s wicked slice on the backhand facet. Then I have it covered.

No, I’m heading to go for Berrettini’s serve. Then I can leave the slice for myself.

What is your hometown, Snaroya, most effective identified for other than you?

It’s by the sea and very good and calm. The Oslo airport applied to be a kilometer absent from wherever I grew up. They moved it outdoors Oslo the yr I was born, but they stored the runway there as a historic web-site. When it arrives to activity, all the little ones perform soccer in the summer and hockey in the wintertime. And they go boating in the summer. It is also acknowledged for tennis since my dad performed.

If you could have evening meal with just one popular man or woman, who would it be?

I would say the Canadian singer the Weeknd. He’s an artist I have listened to a great deal and seriously like. He’s a star close to the environment now, but when I started off listening to him he was more nameless, a bit darker than he is now. I would be fairly star-struck if I were being at that supper, but it would be great to meet him a person working day.

Did you set any targets for this year?

It is tough to established aims by quantities. At the beginning of the time, I reported to myself that if I could close the yr in the Top rated 20 it would be a excellent year. Now, I’m in the Top 10.

But it’s far more significant to end the year Leading 10, not just get into it for a week and then drop out. The final result at the close of the year is the genuinely major achievement.