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  Topic Review (Newest First)
05-03-2012 07:39 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

And tadaa, here it is, the Q&A with Jarkko himself.
Nothing sensational really as expected.

Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen is the third seed on his debut at the Serbia Open 2012 this week and is set to play Croatian qualifier Antonio Veic in his opening match on Thursday in Belgrade.

As part of’s new Q&A series, Nieminen gives his impressions of Belgrade, remembers his military service days and laments his badminton defeats to wife, Anu.

You’re playing in Belgrade for the first time this week. How have you found the city and the tournament?
I have been mostly on the tennis site because I’ve been trying to prepare for the tournament as well as possible. But I have driven through the city and I had a couple of dinners there. From what I have seen, it’s a very nice city. I heard good things from the tournament, so I wanted to come here. Also, you don’t get to new countries too often nowadays. I have been to so many countries, so it’s a nice experience to come to a country where you haven’t been before. So far, no complaints. I really like it and the weather has been very nice.

How is it for you playing in these hot conditions, coming from Scandinavia?
I don’t mind. For me it takes a few days to get used to it, but now I came from Barcelona and we had some hot days there. I really like playing in hot conditions. I don’t like it if it’s really humid, but if it’s hot and dry like many times in Australia, I really like it. So I just have to prepare well and come early to the tournament.

We’re still in the early stages of the European clay-court swing. What challenges do you face when adapting your game from hard court to clay?
The older you get, somehow I feel it’s easier to change the surfaces. I played some good matches already in the first two weeks, so at least I have got some wins under my belt and I’m feeling pretty good. Hopefully I can keep it up. Also it’s nice to play the whole of the European summer here in Europe. It makes it easier after travelling a lot; first month in Australia then one month in the States. It’s nice to be in Europe and I get to go home for a couple of days between the tournaments some times and it makes it much easier, shorter flights and so on.

Both of your ATP World Tour titles have come at the start of the year, including at this season’s APIA International Sydney, where you ended a six-year title drought. What helps you to be so fast out the blocks?
Usually I start pretty well and I really like playing in Australia and New Zealand. I got my first title in Auckland and played the finals in Sydney and Adelaide. I think one of the reasons is that I rest enough and then I practise really well in the off-season. I know what are the best things for me; what I have to practise and what kind of things I have to do.

At the end of last year I had one of the best off-seasons maybe ever. I stayed healthy all the time, which I didn’t do the year before. I could do all the practices as planned and I really played with a good quality all the time. So I had a pretty good feeling that I could make some good results in the near future. Obviously I didn’t guess that I would win the title in the second week of the year, but it’s obviously a very nice start.

You completed a total of three months military service in 2008 and 2009. Do you have lasting memories from that experience? Did it help you with any aspects of your tennis game?
In Finland everybody has to do it, either six or 11 months. I did the six-month period, but in the end I was there about three months, not in a row. I went there after the Basel tournament and I was there the whole off-season basically. I actually enjoyed the whole time there. It was a kind of mental holiday for me. You just follow the orders. You can leave your brains somewhere else and just do what you are told to do. I really enjoyed that because otherwise you’re travelling a lot and you have to create your own schedule. I felt really good and I played some of my best tennis during that time. We had a good group of people and a nice atmosphere. I tried to do all the things as well as I could and it was a very nice experience.

Did any other athletes do the military service with you?
It was the place where athletes go, one hour from Helsinki by car. The athletes go there so it’s easier to practise all sports there. I always wanted to do it. Usually you do it when you are 18, 19, but after I finished my school I wanted to see how I do at tennis and I’m still on that way, in my 12th year now. It took about eight years before I decided to do it.

When you and your wife, Anu, spoke to DEUCE Magazine in 2008, she declared you could not win a point against her on the badminton court; is that still the case?
Yeah... I haven’t improved since then and I think she has. So it’s no different. We don’t even try to play points.

How often do you play with her?
Not too often. I would like to play more badminton, but unfortunately I don’t have time to do that. A couple of times we played and she can give some tips, the same as if we were playing tennis and I would try to teach her how to play.

You went to watch El Clasico (between Barcelona and Real Madrid) in Barcelona last week. How did you enjoy that experience and who were you supporting?
I’m not a huge fan of any team. But I really enjoy good soccer and it was a great experience to be there in this Barcelona-Madrid game. I was in the middle of the Barcelona fans and I just hoped it would be a good game. I didn’t really go for either of them.
04-19-2012 09:44 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

I also didn't know where to put this but
This is what Robin Haase said in new Q&A series:
Personality wise, which player on tour are you most similar to?
It’s difficult for me to say, but if guys were to say he’s the guy that’s like Jarkko Nieminen, I would be happy.
I'm glad the other guys really seem to appreciate him too.
11-10-2010 04:07 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Glad to read the informative thread. Appreciate to you all.
09-26-2010 03:27 PM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Didn't knew where to post it so I decided for this thread. This is not really new but I haven't found it here elsewhere.

03-09-2010 08:05 PM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Biofile with Jarkko Nieminen

Written by: Mark "Scoop" Malinowski on 3rd March 2010

Biofile with Jarkko Nieminen

Status: Winner of one ATP singles title. Career high singles rank #13 in July 2006. Has career wins over Sampras, Agassi, Djokovic.

Ht: 6-1 Wt: 172

DOB: July 23, 1981 In: Masku, Finland

Tennis Inspirations: “Vilas when Borg and McEnroe played. Becker, Edberg and Sampras.”

Nicknames: “Just my first name. I haven’t had any nice nicknames [smiles].”

Hobbies/Leisure Activities: “Well, listen to music, watching movies, doing the sports like ice hockey, soccer, basketball, floor hockey, badminton.”

Early Tennis Memory: “I have so many of those, which ones should I pick…I remember when I was hitting the ball against our living rooom window. I was doing that like the whole day. Playing tennis inside, hitting against the window (age 5). And the window didn’t break, just like, it was loose [smiles].”

Pre-Match Feeling: “It depends on what kind of match there is. But the first time I played against Sampras was really fun because he used to be my idol. I started to play better and I was able to beat him. I was really excited and deeply concentrated to my own game. Because he was really my idol when I was a young boy. I just try to concentrate on my own game. And try to analyze my game and the opponent’s game as well as I can.”

First Job: “Tennis.”

First Car: “That was Fiat (blue).”

Favorite Meal: “Meatballs.”

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: “Blueberry.”

Greatest Sports Moment: “Well, I think when I won my first title in 2006 (Auckland). I was so close so many times before, finally won it. So it was, at least, one of the best moments.”

Most Painful Moment: “Hmmm…there’s many painful moments. But it must be the most painful matches when I had – I lost a few – after I had match points. Not so lately but a few years ago.”

Favorite Tournaments: “U.S. Open. Wimbledon. Stockholm. Madrid. Barcelona. Australia. I also like playing in Asia.”

Closest Tennis Friends: “I’m pretty close with the Swedish guys like Simon Aspelin. Guys from Nordic countries, guys from Sweden, Denmark.”

Funniest Players: “Simon Aspelin. (Aspelin interjects with a smile, “Ask him again what he thinks before the match because I want to hear the truth.”)

Toughest Competitors: “Well, Federer has been the toughest for me. And obviously many guys. But I have played ten times against him and never beaten him, never won a set.”

Embarrassing Tennis Memory: “No I don’t have any embarrassing memories. Just playing really bad on big courts – that’s maybe the most embarrassing.”

Funny Memory: “It’s tough to pick one. There’s many but not when you ask [smiles]…well, once I served to my doubles partner’s ass. And really, real like hard. That was pretty embarrassing. It was a guy from my club (age 17).”

Favorite Vacation: “I would like to go to Nepal. The big mountains, Himalayas.”

People Qualities Most Admired: “I like open-minded, polite, respect other people.”

Family: Wife, Anu.

06-09-2008 05:32 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

here's an article about Jarkko and Anu on
05-02-2006 10:14 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Something I found a few weeks ago, but forgot to post Nothing you don't already know, but it's got some nice things to say about him, whilst not really saying much at all
Jarkko Nieminen reaches new high on ATP lists

Finland's tennis No.1 Jarkko Nieminen moved up two places in the latest ATP entry list rankings and is now ranked 22nd in the world. This is his highest-ever showing amongst the professionals on the tennis circuit.

The entry list system takes performances over the previous 12 months, in such a way that each week the player simultaneously picks up points for his last campaign and loses those points gained one year previously. Nieminen gathered a few extra points this time for reaching the third round of the ATP Master tournament in Miami, where he eventually fell to James Blake of the United States.

The rankings do not have only vanity value: by virtue of his current position, Nieminen is guaranteed entry into even the biggest tennis tournaments - such as the French Open or Wimbledon - without having to qualify, and he is also likely to be among the seeded players, thereby giving him a chance to progress further in the tournament before meeting really stiff opposition. In some cases, seeded players also receive a bye in the first round of tournaments, bringing an automatic windfall of a few additional ATP points.

The 24-year-old left-hander from Masku is also still ranked 9th in the ATP Champions Race. This table is based only on results in the calendar year, and Nieminen's high position here is due to the bright start he has made in 2006.

He won his first-ever ATP title in Auckland in January, and reached the semi-finals in Rotterdam and the quarter-finals at an earlier ATP Masters event in Indian Wells, California. The real significance of the Champions Race is that at the end of the season the highest-ranked players gain entry to a lucrative invitational tournament.

Nieminen, whose record so far this year is 17 wins and seven defeats in singles play, will next be in action in Finland's Davis Cup match against Ireland in the Europe/Africa Zone Group II match to be played from April 7th to 9th in Helsinki.

Thereafter, the ATP circuit picks up once more, with several tournaments on clay, which is a surface Nieminen has previously shown a liking for.
04-29-2006 01:50 PM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

From the Barcelona website:


Rafael Nadal came into his quarterfinal match at Open SEAT 2006 boasting an impressive 44-match winning streak on clay, but Jarkko Nieminen showed no sign of being intimidated.

The 24-year-old Finn instead proved himself up to the challenge of surmounting an upset against the young Spaniard, and despite falling short in the end, he succeeded in further establishing his place among the circuit's best.

Nieminen put on his game face immediately out of the gate, and forced Nadal to play catch-up twice in the first set. Nadal got back on serve at 1-1 and at 4-4, but again allowed Nieminen to take the lead. He dropped his first set in Barcelona in seven matches - dating back to a second-round loss to Alex Corretja in 2003.

His winning-streak appeared to be in serious peril as Nieminen built a 4-1 advantage in the second set, but Nadal rolled out his response attack. Cheered on by a packed house of countrymen, Nadal reeled off the next seven games before Nieminen managed another tally.

Nieminen had four chances to level the score 2-apiece, but Nadal pulled through and broke open the lead. He closed out the match on Nieminen's serve, converting on his second match point to punctuate the 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory.

Nadal notched his 20th victory of the year with his quarterfinal comeback, joining Nieminen, Roger Federer, Ivan Ljubicic, Tommy Haas and James Blake to reach the 20-win mark thus far in 2006
04-03-2006 03:35 PM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

James Blake said something good about Jarkko at the press conference in Miami. Sorry if this has been post.
Q. Are you looking forward to a stadium match where you can use the technology, considering some of the line calls you got?

JAMES BLAKE: Yeah, I definitely am looking forward to it. It's pretty funny. I mean, it says something about how good a guy Jarkko is. After a match, most people aren't very talkative at all and don't really want to see the person they just lost to. He was just talking to me in the locker room and said, "There was a couple close calls out there." And he said, "I think I actually got a couple breaks going my way."

On one of them I think the crosscourt backhand I hit to end the game on one-- at one point he said he was actually ready to play the ball because he thought it was in and they called it out. What can you do? I mean, that's not his job, and it is really nice of him to say that after the match
because*-- but, you know, I think it all evens out in the end. I got lucky with a couple let cords, too. Both of us got a couple breaks going our way.

It still came down to who, I think, played better in the end. And I got to*-- I took advantage of the points that I had, the chances that I had in the third set.

It will be fun to challenge and see how I do. I think I might be a little nervous to challenge. I felt like I was right on those, but if I end up looking stupid if I'm wrong, I don't know, I've got nothing to complain about then.
I think both of them are very nice guys.
03-08-2006 11:31 PM
el güero
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Originally Posted by white&blue
That was a good show. Anybody else watched it?

I liked that when Jarkko and Anu were asked, do they sleep with their racquets? Jarkko said that they sleep on the couch and racquets sleep on the bed.
Yeah, Jarkko was his usual self - modest, honest and down to earth - but he showed some wits in that interview as well
03-04-2006 10:42 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Originally Posted by CattyA
For fans in Finland, Jarkko and Anu are guests in a new TV talk show on Friday night (3.3.).

"Sorainen (Harkimo) tuo joka perjantai ruutuun kotimaisia ja ulkomaisia urheilutähtivieraita. Osa vieraista on huippu-urheilijoita, osa koko kansan tuntemia urheilufaneja.

Ensimmäisessä jaksossa perjantaina 3.3. vieraina tennistähti Jarkko Nieminen, sulkapalloilija Anu Nieminen, Norjan mäkijoukkueen valmentaja Mika Kojonkoski sekä hiihdon päävalmentaja Reijo Jylhä.

Puhelinhaastattelussa Ruotsin jääkiekkojoukkueen päävalmentaja Bengt-Åke Gustafsson.

Sorainen (Harkimo) perjantaisin klo 22.30 3.3. alkaen"
That was a good show. Anybody else watched it?

I liked that when Jarkko and Anu were asked, do they sleep with their racquets? Jarkko said that they sleep on the couch and racquets sleep on the bed.
03-02-2006 08:07 AM
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

For fans in Finland, Jarkko and Anu are guests in a new TV talk show on Friday night (3.3.).

"Sorainen (Harkimo) tuo joka perjantai ruutuun kotimaisia ja ulkomaisia urheilutähtivieraita. Osa vieraista on huippu-urheilijoita, osa koko kansan tuntemia urheilufaneja.

Ensimmäisessä jaksossa perjantaina 3.3. vieraina tennistähti Jarkko Nieminen, sulkapalloilija Anu Nieminen, Norjan mäkijoukkueen valmentaja Mika Kojonkoski sekä hiihdon päävalmentaja Reijo Jylhä.

Puhelinhaastattelussa Ruotsin jääkiekkojoukkueen päävalmentaja Bengt-Åke Gustafsson.

Sorainen (Harkimo) perjantaisin klo 22.30 3.3. alkaen"
02-28-2006 12:46 PM
Action Jackson
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

A Finnish dark horse?

Jan 11, 2006
By Alan Granville at the ASB Tennis Centre in Auckland

Jarkko Nieminen may not have been one of the names volleyed around as a possible Heineken Open champion, but the Finn is looking good as an outside bet for the Auckland crown.

The 24-year-old is ranked 29 in the world and a dark horse in the main draw.

In 2005 he had one of his most consistent years, reaching a personal best quarterfinal appearance at the US Open, as well as four semifinals.

Nieminen is known as a versatile player; he can mix up baseline with serve and volley and proved in round one that he will be a tough man to beat.

He defeated Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis 6-2 6-2 in under an hour on centre court to set up a clash with American Paul Goldstein.

With a likely semifinal match against David Ferrer, Nieminen is looking good for long run in Auckland.

"I can sometimes attack more or I can stay on the baseline like I was on Tuesday. My game style can be very different from day-to-day and that is one of my strengths - I can defend and I can attack," said the popular Finn.

Finland, much like New Zealand these days, does not have much of a tennis culture.

Both countries have fairly similar populations and while Nieminen flies high at 29 in the world, the next best placed Finn is at 433. New Zealand's top player Mark Nielsen is at 311

"The population in the countries is similar and they are both small countries in tennis terms. It helps when someone is doing well.

"2001 was my breakthrough year when I made the top 100 and the media started to follow me more. There are more children playing now in Finland I hear."

Nieminen said he did not feel lonely on the tour despite rarely meeting any other Finns on the circuit.

"This is my sixth year on the tour and I know almost every coach and every player so I don't feel lonely anymore. The Scandinavians immediately took me into their group when I started to play better. I don't feel lonely but I would like more people from Finland to play in the same tournaments."

He would like Finland to develop a tradition for the game like in neighbouring Sweden: "they have had a huge tennis culture for many years and have been able to develop players".

Despite the small population, Nieminen says he always sees support for him wherever he goes.

"Today there was some Finnish tennis fans. We don't have many Finnish people around the world but somehow they always find my matches.

"There are always one or two people out there watching me."

He will be hoping Auckland's Finnish population comes out en force on Wednesday when he faces Goldstein on Court 4.

TV ONE will be providing live coverage of the second round with streaming here on from 11am.
02-28-2006 12:44 PM
Action Jackson
Re: Jarkko News and Articles

Yes, it's an old article and with Jarkko's grandfather dying this is one of the very good things to happen to him this year.

Nieminen finally breaks tour duck

Jan 15, 2006
By Alan Granville at the ASB Tennis Centre

Jarkko Nieminen has always believed he would make the grade and win an ATP Tour title, but even he wasn't anticipating it would take place in Auckland this week.

The 24-year-old left-hander, a pro for six years, has toiled away on the circuit, every now and then he pops his head above the parapet and gets commentators struggling to pronounce his surname before dropping back off the radar.

But the Finn will never forget his six days of competition at the Heineken Open as he battled through five matches to take his first ever title and the first victory for a Finn ever in final.

The 6-2 6-2 victory over Croat Mario Ancic was beamed back to Finland live giving some bleary-eyed tennis fans in Helsinki a chance to cheer on their new hero.

His victory was made all the more unlikely as in two previous visits to Auckland he had never won a set, losing in the first round in 2002 to another Croatian, Goran Ivanisevic, and in 2004 to Fabrice Santoro.

Tennis in Finland has struggled to gain a foot hold in a country dominated by strong men competitors, ice hockey and motor racers.

But Nieminen is blazing a trail in the Scandinavian country and earlier in the week admitted he hoped his success would help inspire the country's children to take up a racket.

Four defeats in finals did not dampen his belief that one day he would finally triumph.

"I didn't feel any pressure because of it but now I have won a title it will be easier for me next time when I play in other finals.

"For me and my country this win is a very big thing, it is difficult to put into words how I feel."

The world number 29 said he was always confident about winning an ATP final.

"I was always asked these questions when I lost in the four finals and many times in the semifinals. I think I was the highest ranked player never to win a title so I would always be asked these questions.

"But I knew my game is good enough to win a title. I always believed in myself. I had a very colourful year last year. I pulled a stomach muscle at the Australian Open and I couldn't play for a few weeks and my ranking dropped to about 140 but I still believed that if I kept working hard that I would come back.

"Last year was my best year in ranking by getting to the top 30 and I got a lot of confidence from that. I couldn't get a better start to this year than a title."

Victory at the Heineken Open should lift his world ranking to outside the top 20 but knows he needs to find another level if he wants to break the top 15.

He reached the last eight at the US Open last year, his best Grand Slam placing.

"It's hard; I have to go far in the big tournaments. I have to do well in the Grand Slams and the Masters.

"I have to take the confidence from here to Melbourne. It has always been an ambition of mine to play well there. I just need to get some rest and focus on that."

Nieminen will play Austrian wildcard Marc Kimmich in the first round at the Australian Open and will be hoping to keep his great start to 2006 going.
02-28-2006 08:01 AM
Action Jackson
Jarkko News and Articles

Every self respecting forum should have one of these threads.

I just found an article relating to Jarkko in Swedish, but it's a general thing on Finnish sport I will translate it soon.

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