When a player retires, often in their early 30s or late 20s if injuries take their toll, what’s a poor player to do?!
Here are some of the more interesting 2nd careers:
1. Ion Tiriac
The Godfather of tennis, Tiriac managed many players including Boris Becker while also running tournaments, and who knows what else. You just get the feeling not to mess with him.
2. John McEnroe
Mac may have been foul mouthed and disagreeable on court, but he grew into one of the most eloquent and wry commentators in the game. A global star in effect with commercials, tv and movie cameos, everyone loves McEnroe now.
3. Andre Agassi
From Bolletieri Brat to model citizen, Agassi has done more for US education than any government has. His Charter School, charity work and regular late night tv appearances, keeps him in the public eye and is the most respected former tennis player for his on and off court endeavors.
4. Boris Becker
A bit of this, a bit of that for Boris. A shrewd and humorous commentator who takes himself less seriously than he did on court, Becker is a fixture on German and British TV and had his share of tabloid headlines too. In his spare time, he plays professional poker too. Once a player, always a player.
5. Jim Courier
Moody Jim in press conferences, what a difference retirement makes! His disarming on court Australian Open interviews are a delight. He also is a successful business man, current Davis Cup captain and sharp dresser.
6. Yevgeny Kafelnikov
Always chasing prize money somewhere, Kafelnikov took to professional golf and poker with moderate success in both. He does some tennis commentary for Russian TV and plays on the senior circuit.
7. Brad Gilbert
Brad took his ugly winning ways off court and into one of the most successful tennis books of all time – Winning Ugly. His other talent was in coaching and turned around Agassi’s career and took Roddick to number 1. The fact he doesn’t shut up, got him a regular tennis commentary gig for ESPN and others.
8. Marat Safin
Newly retired Safin, didn’t waste time and got himself elected into Russian parliament. We’ll see how far that goes, but his good looks and personality will surely keep him in the public eye for a while. A Russian Davis Cup captaincy beckons for him at some point too.
9. Mats Wilander
When not commentating for Eurosport, Mats literally takes his show on the road with ‘Wilander on Wheels’, a mobile coaching roadshow across the US.
10. Michael Stich
Stich is a highlight during Wimbledon fortnight for the BBC’s commentary team. A highly intelligent and funny guy, he also re-invigorated his native Hamburg tournament.