Piotr Wozniacki, Caroline
Daddy’s (tennis) girl
REAL SPORTS SCENE - Anthony Suntay (The Philippine Star) - November 27, 2018 - 12:00am

I’ve always been curious about the parent-coach dynamic because growing up, I dabbled a bit into teaching my children about the rudiments of a few sports, since I always wanted to push them into physical activities. But it starts to get ticklish when you coach them full time, because you are also in their ear about the other aspects of their lives.

Piotr Wozniacki is one professional coach who has successfully brought up his daughter Caroline, a fine young lady, into becoming one of the world’s top tennis players. It was a very engaging conversation I had with him together with other media members at the WTA Finals in Singapore a few weeks back

Philippine STAR: How hard is it to separate being a dad from being a coach?

Piotr Wozniacki: Obviously it’s not easy. I practice with Caroline, we talk on tactics. And just before matches, there’s big stress, this is typical. So this is not easy, talking to your daughter or to your players. So, yeah, I don’t really recommend that to everybody.

In your past interviews, you said you wanted to slow down. But you’re as busy as ever. Four years ago I did some work with (Jelena) Jankovic. I took Thomas Hogstedt and two, three different coaches. My idea also was for Caroline that we change her team. For a woman this is very, very heavy. Women have different bodies than men. So for me, I’ll stay with Caroline. She said to me, “Father, if you stop, I stop.” So this is the situation.

How has the tour changed in your opinion? Wow! The change is everywhere! We see ten years ago to today I see everything is much more serious. We have many winners now. When time Serena began,  she changed tennis, womens tennis. 

Tennis has more techniques now it’s more fun. But racquets also has are different, strings are different, everything different. Take the racquets, I can now play. I can play power with power!

And now players are working, working, working. Before we played three, four days of practice. Today they practice minimum three times every day.

So this is a different story, a huge difference.

Does Caroline now play with less stress after winning a Grand Slam (Australian Open)?

The same stress, doesn’t matter that Caroline won last year. Yes its a huge thing, beating everybody. Also the Masters win Singapore was big. Her parents are proud, I’m happy. But the next day, its back to practice. Caroline will not accept that her father takes two beers after this. This is discipline. There are three important things to womans tennis. One is discipline. Second thing is discipline. And third is also discipline.

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