Stefan Edberg interviewed by Västerviks Tidningen
from Västerviks Tidningen
by Malin Belfrage
translated into English by Mauro Cappiello
There's lack of Swedish tennis players in the world elite.
Björn Borg, Mats Wilander, Stefan Edberg, Anders Järryd, Magnus Larsson, Nicklas Kulti, Magnus Norman, Jonas Björkman, Thomas Johansson and Thomas Enqvist. The list is actually even longer and it has not been particularly difficult to put together a world class Davis Cup team for Sweden. Until now.
Some time ago half of the Swede were top-ten in the world, today we have one among the top 100, Soderling, ranked 29: after him comes Michael Ryderstedt at the 331st place.
Joachim "Pim-Pim" Johansson and Andreas Vinciguerra appeared as two redeeming Lucky Luke-shots at the beginning of the 2000s, but disappeared almost faster than their own shadows because of injuries.
What happened to the Swedish tennis?
«We hadn't fully understood how good we were before. It is unique really what a fantastic time we had in Sweden in the 80's and 90's. Very probably that was because we had really good coaches. In addition to tennis they were often teachers and that was very educational. There was probably even more time to spend on talent, then», explains Stefan Edberg, who also remarked that it is up to each one.
«Yes, it is both required to train properly and rest and eat right. Tennis is not just a physical sport but also a mental one, and you must be prepared to live for tennis if you're going to be the best. Tennis was a priority in my life and since I was 16 years old I started training for three hours a day».
Was it ever boring?
«No, the best part was when the matches began. Then, for the most, training was refinement. Matches are the best training sessions, so my motto has always been to play and win as many matches as possible in order not to have to work out. Therefore, I see Kings of Tennis a bit like a carrot when I train for competitions».
What do you think about the future of Swedish tennis?
«After Roger Federer there is a huge gap. There are some younger juniors who have the talent, but it is very uncertain and far until you know where they will get. Unfortunately, I think we're far from seing the next Swede reach the top-100. Then it looks a little brighter on the women's side with Sofia Arvidsson (56th) and Johanna Larsson (67th).
Among the contemporary stars of the Kings of Tennis Stefan Edberg lost against Goran Ivanisevic 4-6, 2-6 in Wednesday night's match. Late last night the Västervik son played against Magnus Larsson and the match was still going on when VT was printed.
One thing is for sure for the Swedish tennis world. It was better before.
- Stefan Edberg & Tony Pickard Mr Class and his teacher
- "I am a happy person"
- Edberg to BBC: "Federer is the greatest in my eyes"
- Edberg: "No one thought Federer and Nadal would be here today"
- Edberg: "It was like the script for a movie"
- Stefan talks about his passive arena in Växjö
- «He's one of the smartest players I have seen»
- On the ball in the Western Algarve
- "My first time in Turkey"
- "With Roger and Rafa, we saw the golden age of tennis"
- Many fond memories for Stefan
- "It was a crazy situation"
- Stefan interviewed on the Australian Open
- Edberg: «It's hard for Djokovic to repeat 2011»
- The enjoyment of the children's chauffeur