Canada’s rising tennis star, Milos Raonic, will play one of the most important matches of his career Tuesday against Switzerland’s Roger Federer, the No. 3-ranked player in the world and winner of 16 Grand Slam tournaments, at Indian Wells in the BNP Paradis Masters Series 1000 event.
The tale of the tape:
Birthplace: Basel, Switzerland
Residence: Bottmingen, Switzerland
Weight: 187 pounds
Turned pro: 1998
Coach: Paul Annacone
Current rank: No. 3
Career high: No. 1 (Held the No. 1 ranking for 237 consecutive weeks, a record, and has been ranked No. 1 for a total of 285 weeks, second only to Pete Sampras (286)
2012 record: 16-2, including two titles (Rotterdam and Dubai)
2012 prize money: $1,293,375
Career match record: 823-188, including 72 titles
Career earnings (singles and doubles combined): $68,723,311
Noteworthy: Is one of only seven male players to capture a career Grand Slam (Australia, French, Wimbledon, U.S. Open). The only male player in history to reach the title match of every Grand Slam five or more times. Has 16 Grand Slam titles in all and appeared in 23 Grand Slam finals. He is the only player in history to reach the title match of each of the nine ATP Masters tournaments. Won Olympic gold medal in doubles in 2008 with fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka.
Birthplace: Podgorica, Montenegro
Residence: Thornhill, Ont.
Weight: 198 pounds
Turned pro: 2008
Coach: Galo Blanco
Current rank: 27
Career high: 24 (27-02-2012)
2012 record: 15-2, including two titles (Chennai and San Jose)
2012 prize money: $350,461
Career match record: 50-28, including three titles
Career earnings (singles and doubles combined): $1,149,192
Noteworthy: Raonic was chosen the 2011 ATP newcomer of the year after his breakthrough season last year, which included a trip to the Australian Open round of 16. Combined with his first of two wins at the SAP Open in San Jose, he rose to 37 from 152 in the rankings in a month. He is the highest-ranked Canadian men’s singles player since the ATP introduced computer rankings in 1973. His first Grand Slam appearance was the 2010 U.S. Open.
Raonic in his own words:
On preparing for the Federer match:
“It’s my job to focus on the moment. I focus on what I need to do. I don't think about any what ifs, what could happen, what should happen, what can happen. “I just focus on what I need to do, where I need to serve or where he might serve, and play the point.”
On the evolution of his game in the past 12 months:
“I think I'm a much better player. I think I do a better job with my serve; a better player from the baseline. I think I return and volley much better. I think I move much better and I think my instinct is much better. I know what I need to do in certain moments of the match. I have picked up a lot of experience through the year. I have dealt with difficult things throughout the last year. I think it made me a better person, a better tennis player and a better competitor. I think I've also found my own in this world on the road. I know how to manage all of this, not just on the court but outside the court. At the same time I think I know how to manage myself, my emotions, my temper on the court.”