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Jannik Sinner’s Journey: From Humble Roots To Hottest In Tennis
3 Min Read · March 10, 2024

Fresh off his maiden Grand Slam title at the Australian Open in January, the highest-ranked player in Italian men’s tennis history (No. 3 at the moment) doesn’t want to overthink things. Jannik Sinner is more concerned with working hard, staying humble and keeping his eyes on the prize. 


A semifinalist last year in Indian Wells, Sinner has stormed through his first two matches at the 2024 BNP Paribas Open to stretch his career-best winning streak to 17.

Does he feel unbeatable? 

“No, I'm not unbeatable,” he deadpanned earlier this week, while holding court with a group of reporters. “I'm just well-prepared.”

Just like his streamlined game, Sinner’s words hit their target with efficiency. Still, he seems unaware of his own seemingly earth-shattering powers. 

When asked to relive his stunning Australian Open title run during media day last Wednesday, the Italian admitted that he’s still a bit surprised at just how magnificently his tennis career is panning out. 

“You never know if you can achieve these kinds of things, especially when you are younger and you decide to try to be a professional tennis player, but in the other way I was never dreaming to become that good,” he said. 

“It has been something incredible. I come from a normal family, and where I’m from we usually do more winter sports than summer sports – I was just trying to get better.” 

Getting better? That’s putting it mildly. Ever since Sinner emerged on Tour as a coltish teen, reaching the quarterfinals at Roland-Garros on his debut in 2020, he has been on the rise. 

These days, the mindset of the young man from the Italian Alps who once entertained dreams of being a world-class ski racer has shifted. With each success he earns on the tennis court, Sinner recognizes more of his potential. 

After powering past Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff in straight sets on Sunday, he was asked to describe his biggest talent, and didn’t hesitate.

“I have a lot of respect for all of the players, but I don't have fear to face them,” he said. “I realized it when I skied that I had fear to go in the downhill races. When you go very fast and then you jump 20, 30 meters it's different. Then I had this fear. And then in my mind, tennis, it's nothing to be scared about, no?”

Now that he has been to the Grand Slam summit, Sinner’s self-confidence is snowballing. He’s been the best player on the ATP Tour this season and it doesn’t feel like his level is unsustainable.  

“Of course there are, throughout the career, some moments when you realize that you can become a good tennis player, but to be in a position where I am right now, obviously now I have a different mindset,” he said. “I know that I can do it – it’s different – but even three years ago the mindset was not like this.” 

“Now achieving [a Grand Slam title], I know that I can play some good tennis and I can compete against the best players in the world, and I think that for me, at the moment, is the most important thing.” 

Rather than rest on his laurels, Sinner, who is coached by Darren Cahill and Simone Vagnozzi, is intent on discovering – and testing – his limits. He believes that his potential is far from tapped at this nascent point of his career. 

“I think tennis is a good sport because you can always set new goals,” he said. “It doesn’t really matter what kind of title you win, the next week is a good week and a good opportunity to do something great again – this kind of motivation keeps pushing me.” 

“For me that is the journey, to try to get 100 percent out of everything. And I know that physically I can improve, on the court I can improve, and also mentally.” 

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