Jannik Sinner is only 22 years old but it seems as if he has been challenging for tennis titles for a decade now. He has not been and Sinner was inconsistently successful for a couple of years prior to 2023. Then after a relatively slow start to last year, Sinner's play greatly increased beginning in August.
Between August and November, Sinner won three titles. He also was the main reason that Italy took home the title in the David Cup at the end of November. During run at the Davis Cup, Sinner defeated Novak Djokovic. The victory was his second in three matches over a two-week span for the Italian over the Serb.
To begin 2024, Jannik Sinner defeated Djokovic again, only this time the match was in the semifinals of the Australian Open. Sinner would go on to defeat Daniil Medvedev in the final and win the first Grand Slam of his career. There are likely many more major titles to come for Sinner.
Jannik Sinner's parent deserve an award
Sinner, though, seems to take a slightly different approach to his tennis career. He works hard, of course, but he also leaves enough time for him to get away from the game and find some stress release. This happened in December when instead of playing a lot of exhibitions or warm-up tournaments for the Australian Open, Sinner instead went skiing. Much of this different approach to the game is probably attributed to how Sinner's parents allowed him to be free enough to grow as a human and a tennis player.
According to Sinner's coach, Simone Vagnozzi, when Sinner's parents, Johann and Siglinde, do come to tournaments, they are there simply to root for their child and never to discuss tennis. Speaking to reporters after Sinner won the Australian Open, Vagnozzi said Sinner's parents "do not speak one word about tennis. They're just there. They enjoy the life of the tournament."
For decades, tennis fans have heard horror stories about players dealing with overbearing, and sometimes, abusive parents. It seemed as if sometimes the parents were living through the child in trying to win tennis titles and not letting the player be their own human being. Sinner left home at 14 years old to learn how to be a better tennis player and his parents allowed him to do so because they wanted him to be happy, not because they thought he must only play tennis and play well.
Jannik Sinner's parents are not simply an example of how to be great parents of tennis players. They are an example of how to be excellent parents period.