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Tim Smyczek: The Biofile

Smyczek © Getty ImagesTim Smyczek reached a career-high No. 101 ranking earlier this season.

American Tim Smyczek, who recorded his 10th tour-level win this week at the US Men's Clay Court Championship, reveals both his greatest and most embarrassing sports moments, his closest tennis friends and more for this Biofile with Scoop Malinowski...

First Tennis Memory: "I used to follow my brother Alex around to lessons. And it was a big deal if I could hit the ball over the fence. I was really happy when I could hit the ball over the fence."

Tennis Inspirations: "Right now, David Ferrer. Between him and maybe Lleyton Hewitt.

Last Book Read: "Was called Boomerang by Michael Lewis."

Greatest Sports Moment: "It was earlier this year in Australia, I got to play Ferrer on the Margaret Court Arena That was pretty special."

Most Painful Moment: "Last year I was up 6-4, 5-4, 40-15 serving in the tournament (and lost the match). That was painful. It wasn't a big tournament or anything but it still stunk. (Which tournament and against who?) Charlottesville. Bradley Klahn." 

First Famous Tennis Player You Met Or Encountered: "That's a good question. I used to go the RCA Championships in Indianapolis with my family every year. I remember the first year my brother and I met Jack Waite. He was also a Wisconsin boy, so that was pretty special."

Closest Tennis Friends: "My coach (Billy Heiser). And I'm pretty close with Ryan Sweeting and Alex Kuznetsov."

Funniest Player Encountered: "Ryan Sweeting might be. He's pretty funny."

Embarrassing Tennis Memory: "Yeah, I have a great one. I played high school tennis my freshman year. And I won the States. And we were having the award ceremony back at the school and I was goofing off at one of the back tables with my friend. And I heard them call my name up at the podium. My friends and I were like: What's going on? They said, Well, go up there. And I went up there. And it turns out the coach was giving out the MVP award. But he wasn't giving it to me, he was just mentioning my name. He was kind of surprised that I walked up there and it was a really awkward moment. And I just shook his hand and I was waiting for an award or something and I didn't get it [smiles]."

Strangest Match: "I think in juniors, maybe 14's, I won a match 6-0, 0-6, 6-0."

Favourite Tournament(s):  "US Open. And Indian Wells is a close second."

Current Car: "Ford Expedition."

Favorite Sport Outside Tennis: "Golf."

Three Athletes You Like To Watch & Follow: "Let's see...I really like watching Tiger Woods. Luke Donald. And Rory McIlroy."

Fiercest Competitor Encountered: "Ferrer. (Why?) He's gotten to No. 4 in the world with not a whole lot of physical tools. He does it all on grit and will to win. That's really admirable."

Best You Ever Felt On Court:  "Usually my biggest wins haven't come when I'm in the zone or anything. My biggest wins have been really physical battles. Maybe the matches that I actually played the best were less memorable maybe."

People Qualities Most Admired: "I think my parents brought me up to really appreciate generosity." 

Courtesy of Scoop Malinowski, tennis-prose.com

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