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An interview with Tennis champion Gilles Müller

Culture

This summer, Verdura Resort’s exclusive Academies with the Stars welcomes tennis champion Gilles Müller to its pristine courts. We sat down with the award-winning player to talk everything tennis, and find out what tennis enthusiasts can expect to learn at Verdura Resort this summer. 

 

How did you first get into tennis and at what age?

“I started playing tennis when I was four years old. It was more of a coincidence, because my parents didn’t play. I really got to grips with it when we moved, as the tennis club was only a couple of hundred metres away from our house.”

 

Can you share a little about your career to date, and your proudest moments?

“I had a career high ranking of 21 in the world, I won 2 ATP titles (Sydney and 's-Hertogenbosch) and I reached the quarter finals at the US Open in 2008 and Wimbledon in 2017. There are many special moments, but if I had to pick one, it would be when I walked into the Maracanã Stadium in Rio as the flag bearer at the opening ceremony of the Olympics in 2016 for Luxemburg.”

 

What do you enjoy most about the sport?

“I always enjoyed the competition, in anything I did, but in tennis, I love that you control everything—and you don’t have a teammate you can blame. You are accountable for everything that happens on a court.”

 

How did you first begin working with Rocco Forte Hotels?

“I was contacted by Sunball Tennis in 2019 and they asked me if I would be interested in hosting a tennis academy at Verdura Resort in Sicily. I am looking forward to meeting tennis enthusiasts who share my passion for the sport.”

 

What will your role in this summer’s Academies with the Stars look like?

“Most importantly, I want to have fun with the players and try to enjoy every moment with them on the court. Hopefully, I will be able to help them reach another level, by giving them tips and sharing my experiences with them. It’s a great feeling to see a player improve under your guidance.”

 

What does tennis teach you about life?

“Tennis taught me a lot of things. Mostly that you should not take anything for granted. You need to wake up every morning with the motivation to improve, day in day out. And be ready to start from scratch every day.”

 

Which qualities should a good tennis player have, physically and mentally?

“I would say that the most important thing is your mindset! You need to be able to suffer, in order to become a champion.”

 

Can you share a tip or two that budding tennis players may find helpful?

“You need to dream big. Set yourself high goals and work hard; then you will become a champion no matter what. There is a saying that goes, “aim for the moon and you might land among the stars”. That is exactly what you should do.”

 

Hone your skills under the expert eye of a champion this summer at Verdura Resort’s Academies with the Stars. For more information please contact reservations.verdura@roccofortehotels.com, or call +39 0925 9980 01.

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