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Shy and Retiring.

Posted by gauloises1 on July 19, 2010

Having been mildly puzzled by Marat’s unique definition of retirement as basically being seen more than he was before he embarked on his year-long farewell tour, I quite enjoyed this from the Net Post:

Quite a few remarkable tennis champions are moving smoothly into the political world. Thomas Johansson of Sweden, the Australian Open champion in 2002, and Marat Safin, the player he defeated in that final but who won a couple of grand slam titles himself, are among the new movers and shakers. Johansson had a substantial part to play in helping to assemble a very decent field in Bastad last week and he is the tournament director for the IF Stockholm Open in October.

Johansson was working the field during Wimbledon, attempting to persuade as many players as possible of the delights of the Swedish capital (that should not be too difficult). So, too was Safin, on behalf of Moscow and the Kremlin Cup which, wouldn’t you know it, falls in exactly the same week at Stockholm. That should have made for an interesting conversation should the two men have crossed paths, which one is certain they did.

“I just want to bring more players to our tournament,” said Safin. “We need to make the event more interesting. Lately we have struggled with tennis players. The people in Russia want to see more good quality.”

It is hard to imagine Safin behind a desk ploughing through e-mails and correspondence, but he says he is having a whale of a time. “I sit down, I answer the phone,” he said. “Life is very good.” He is hoping to help re-structure the Russian Federation and is working with a new team in Moscow to put his many impressive ideas into place.

Marat the mover and shaker.

Marat also dropped a typically optimistic assessment of Dinara’s situation:

Marat went on to discourse about Dinara, his sister, who has been struggling badly with injujries and a lack of confidence. After being No 1 in the world through much of last year, she is currently No 33 and has fallen off the radar. “She has a stress fracture in her spine,” Marat confided. “She has been playing in pain and that is no way to play. She should take off a chunk of time, re-evaluate and stop trying to play through the pain. I think she should take a six-month rest and think about the future.”

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