Richard Gasquet, 35, revealed he was 16 when he first realized he could make a career as a professional tennis player.
Gasquet was a successful junior and some believed he would go on to win Grand Slams and become a world No. 1.
Gasquet, a former world No. 7, is an accomplished player but he has never won a Grand Slam or a Masters title.
15-time ATP champion Gasquet shared advice to young players who want to succeed in the game of tennis.
“I don’t really take the junior titles into account. In fact, it was when I played in Monte Carlo at 16 that I felt that maybe I could make a career as a pro player. If I had any advice for a player who wants to give himself the chance to get there, I would tell him to eat and sleep tennis, to be passionate about what he does and to think that tennis during this period while knowing that he will have to suffer to achieve a certain number of his goals,” Gasquet said, per We Love Tennis.
Gasquet beat Lucas Pouille last week
France’s Gasquet recovered from a set down to beat former world No. 10 Pouille at last week’s Orleans Challenger.
“I fought well. I’m not 20 anymore, I have to fight. The games were difficult, Lucas hits hard, he has a big serve. So I had to fight to win this match,” Gasquet said after the win.
Recently, Gasquet acknowledged the greatness of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
“There are young guys who play very, very well, who have a good level, who deserve to find their place and who are incredible, but Nadal and Federer, they are world stars! When they’re not there, for me, it leaves a huge void. Federer will be irreplaceable in terms of aesthetics, tennis and for his personality. We will never see that again,” Gasquet said.