Paradorn Srichaphan is a retired
professional tennis player from Thailand. He was the first men’s singles
player from Asia to be ranked in the top 10 of the ATP rankings, reaching a
career high world no. 9. His nickname is “Ball”.
Career Paradorn started his professional ATP
career in 1998. He remained in the lower ranks of the professional circuit for
several years. However his ranking continued to improve. After being a
surprise finalist in the 2000 Hopman Cup, 2002 was a breakthrough year for
him as he managed to get into the top 30 after defeating Andre Agassi in
Wimbledon. In 2003 he won his first ATP-level singles title, the Hamlet Cup.
He reached the fourth round in Wimbledon where he was beaten by Andy Roddick in
four sets, having become the first player to defeat Rafael Nadal in a Grand
Slam event, He also reached the fourth round in the US Open losing to Lleyton
Hewitt. By the end of the year, he was ranked World No. 11 in the ATP rankings.
He is however not in favor of playing doubles having won no title in this
category on either Challenger or ATP level.
Paradorn is extremely popular in Asia, especially in Thailand. He was
Thailand’s flag bearer at the opening ceremony of the 2004 Summer Olympic
Games held in Athens, Greece but lost in the first round of singles to Joachim
Johansson. His best Olympics performance was second round in Sydney, beating
Attila Sávolt before being beaten by third-seeded Magnus Norman. Paradorn
plays with big serves and powerful forehands. He uses a single-handed
backhand, and is known for being a weak player on clay courts due to his lack of
patience when playing points. At the 2006 Indian Wells masters
tournament, Paradorn reached the semifinals and lost against World No. 1
Roger Federer in two sets. En route to the semifinal he beat World No. 20 Robby
Ginepri in the second round, World No. 16 Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain in the
third round, World No. 4 David Nalbandian in the fourth round, and
World No. 25 Jarkko Nieminen of Finland in the quarterfinals.
In the 2006 Wimbledon Championships, Paradorn was seeded 29th but was upset
in the first round by Agustín Calleri in five sets. He did not perform well in
all the events he participated in early 2007 due to wrist injury and he missed
basically the whole 2007 season. As a result, his ranking fell to below No.
900. After the end of the ATP Masters Series event in Miami that ended in
early April 2007, Paradorn fell entirely out of the ATP rankings. He began
practicing as of March 2008, however it took him until the 2009 Thailand Open to
return to the ATP World Tour, playing doubles. He retired in June 2010,
following a motorcycle crash that left him with two broken hands and a wrist.
Paradorn is sponsored by Adidas, Yonex, and Thai Airways International.
Personal life Paradorn is noted for his politeness on
the court. At each match, he performs the wai, the traditional Thai greeting,
clasping his hands together and bowing to the four corners of the stadium. The
gesture is seen as thanking the fans and it has become his trademark. His success
in tennis led to a spike in popularity of the game in Thailand. The Nation
newspaper named him “Thai of the Year” in 2002; in 2003, Paradorn was featured
on the cover of Time and featured as one of the year’s “Asian heroes”.
In November 2005, Paradorn spent a week as a Buddhist monk in a temple outside
Bangkok. He adopted the Buddhist name Mahaviro, meaning “great and brave”,
wore saffron robes and shaved his head. His then girlfriend, Odette Henriette
Jacqmin was present for the ceremony. Paradorn married Natalie Glebova in
Bangkok, Thailand, on 29 November 2007. In June 2010, Paradorn officially
announced his retirement from the ATP tour but will coach Thailand’s Davis Cup
team. In February 2011, Paradorn and wife,
Natalie, announced their separation after three years of marriage stating
the reason to be “work commitments had kept them apart.”
Career finals =Singles=
Singles performance timeline Business career
In August 2009, Paradorn opened an Italian cuisine restaurant in Bangkok
named So–Le Cafe. At the same time, Paradorn also launched an herbal-product
company named Magic Thaiherbs. He also tries his hand at acting in Bang Rajan
External links Paradorn Srichaphan at the Association
of Tennis Professionals Paradorn Srichaphan at the International
Tennis Federation Paradorn Srichaphan at the Davis Cup