Form And Fitness Presented By COMPEED®
Jeremy Chardy: Comfortable On Clay
by Matt Fitzgerald|
Jeremy Chardy achieved his biggest breakthrough to date at this year’s Australian Open, when he upset Juan Martin del Potro en route to his first major quarter-final, but the Frenchman has always felt at home when playing on clay.
Nearly five years ago, as a wild card at Roland Garros, Chardy rallied from two sets down to stun seventh-ranked David Nalbandian in the second round and went on to reach the round of 16. Just over a year later, the Pau native lifted his first ATP World Tour trophy in Stuttgart.
As part of Compeed’s Form & Fitness series, World No. 26 Chardy discusses how his game translates to clay, the area of fitness most critical for success on the surface and more…
Your first ATP World Tour title came on clay in 2009. How do you feel your game suits the surface?
I like to play on clay courts. I always do my best results on it. This year, I feel good. I made the semi-finals in Vina del Mar. I hope this year I will play very good again on clay courts.
How does your fitness preparation for the European spring clay-court season compare to the beginning of the year when you're playing on hard courts?
It's something similar, because during the preparation for the Australian Open, we need to be ready to play five sets, so we have to be very fit. On clay courts, you have to play more rallies, so I do more jogging and cardio.
Constructing points on clay takes more time and effort. How does an ATP player get in the frame of mind to stay patient, given the increase in rally length and retrieving?
It's more difficult, because the surface is slow. You have to play with more tactics. With my game, I look to take the opportunities and go for my shots, so it's not a huge difference for me.
If you had to pick one area of fitness that has the greatest impact for success on clay, which would it be and why?
I think endurance is the most important, because if you want to win matches on clay, especially in five sets, it is always going to be tough. Speed is important too. For my game, I have to move fast to the ball and take it early.
Given that you broke the Top 25 of the Emirates ATP Rankings for the first time this year, what do you need to continue improving to make the next jump?
I'm trying to be more physical at every tournament. When I have a day off, I always make time for fitness. I think I have to improve my net game, but I like how I play. Most important for me is to be strong physically, to mentally stay calm and be focused on my game.
With assistance from Nanette Duxin.
- COMPEED is an official supplier of the ATP.