EMIRATES ATP RANKINGS - STARS OF TOMORROW
Guillaume Rufin: Aggressive Approach
by James Buddell|
Guillaume Rufin is determined to add to France's number (13) in the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings.
The 23-year-old Charnay resident has already spent 40 weeks among the elite, but he is now knuckling down and working hard to become a permanent presence.
"I just try to think about doing my best every day in practice," Rufin told ATPWorldTour.com. "I always want to do the best I can. That is how I think I have improved in recent years.
"I find that I have to be focused on the game, not on [Emirates ATP] Rankings points or tournaments. My tip is to just focus on the game."
Four years ago, he made the transition from promising junior to life as a professional. Rufin rocketed from No. 1,067 to No. 171 in the space of 12 months by virtue of winning three ITF Futures and one ATP Challenger Tour titles.
"The transition can be difficult, but if you are focused on the sport and not on the transition from the juniors to the seniors tour it can be easy," said Rufin. "You have to play in the Futures events, continue to improve and then move on to the Challengers."
Life was good. But injuries stalled his development in mid-2010.
Hip surgery was required in December 2010. It forced Rufin to recuperate and re-evaluate. Since then, he has dipped between competing in the ATP Challenger Tour and qualifying into ATP World Tour events.
"The mental side is much stronger on the ATP World Tour. Sometimes you have very good players competing in Challenger events, but when it is 4-all they give away two points."
This year, Rufin has compiled an 8-13 record on the ATP World Tour – including a VTR Open quarter-final run – and a 9-7 mark at ATP Challenger Tour level, including the Oberstaufen title (d. Gojowczyk).
The World No. 103 said, "I have improved through their influence, because they spot things in my technique and offer me advice. Every player at the Federation respects them because we all know they have played against the likes of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal."
Rufin has trained with intensity, but he isn't a fan of long distance running.
"I don’t like to run 40 minutes," he said. "I like to sprint for 30 seconds and stop –shuttle running. I have never run more than one hour, but I like to spend time on the bike in the forests.
"On the court, I realise that I need to be more aggressive. The Top 50 or Top 20 are very aggressive, but they also don't miss much.
"I am trying to become more aggressive and come to the net. I need to use my height and improve my volley. Only then do I think that I will win matches at the bigger tournaments, improve my all-round game and move deep inside the Top 100."