What brought you back to tennis?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: One of the reasons I decided to get back into tennis as a coach now is because of my experience commentating for Fox Sports during the grand slams. I had not followed the ATP Tour for a long time, actually since I retired. But commentating on the matches and seeing the guys play, something stirred deep down inside me and I felt the call of tennis. Now I am coaching some junior players and I am loving being back on the court again.
Your father was your coach from the beginning until the last two years when your eldest brother Thanakorn took over. What did your father do right?
PS: I was the third son, and my two older brothers played tennis very well. By the time I picked up a racquet, my father had more than ten years’ experience with my brothers Thanakorn and Narathorn. Starting out with them, he did not know much about tennis, but he found his way by reading books and asking questions. Then, he lifted himself up to be a tennis coach. Lucky for me that he had already gotten a lot of experience before I started to get better. However, from age 17-18, I was on ITF Junior team so I had experience with some other coaches too. My father was really very open to listening to experts and then filtering the information down. It was interesting that he never cared about the results. Never did I see him upset over a loss. Especially, what others considered bad losses. I think that was his strength. He was very confident that, sooner or later, success would come. But he did care about my effort, both in practice and matches. He demanded 100% effort all the time. He was firm but fair. He would hit with ‘soft wood’. He also taught me the value of respecting the game of tennis and the people on the court and in the crowd.