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An article came out in TennisHead recently that interviewed Khachanov. Among other things, he named who he thinks is going to dominate tennis after the Big 3:

“Alexander Zverev, Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andrey Rublev, Denis Shapovalov and me, the six of us could be dominating in the future."

Can't really argue against this. I'd maybe add Berrettini, FAA and de Minaur. Thiem is awesome, too, but not quite an "up and coming young player".

Then something hit me. Out of the 6 players that Khachanov named, 3 are Russians. Out of the remaining three, both Zverev's and Shapovalov's parents were Russians that immigrated to Germany and Canada, respectively. Then I looked up Tsitsipas. His mother is Russian!

It's quite possible that in a couple of years we'll have 5/5 top players either Russian or of Russian descent.

Where are all the young Americans, French, Australian, British, German, Spanish, Czech, Swedish born players that used to be source of (nearly) all the talent in tennis?

And what is it with this Russian-descent invasion? Is it just a coincidence?
 

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It's not a coincidence of course, a mix of talent (do what's required to get the most out), genes (physical training, biology) , determination (out rageous in this aspect) and not spoilt / winner attitude (ok that's my opinion) plus a decline in some of those aspects in the western world
 

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Having realised the same quite some time ago I have thought about this a lot recently, yet I can't say I've really figured out a very good explanation for it all.

However, what I've thought that at least partly explains 'the invasion' is that Russia is indeed a big country with high population and that it was about the time they started to produce talented young tennis players.

Russia is also a country known for hard working athletes with barely any spare time. That was especially true in the past when things were organised a bit differently over there and the athletes were pretty much controlled by the nation 'from above'. While that may not be the case any longer, the parents of these young players we are talking about have lived through those times and are likely to bring some remains of that attitude along them.

I also see the whole thing as a question of money. There's a lot of money in the tennis world these days and surely that is of interest to Russians especially with the historical background they have.

And finally, while the above are all true facts I still think coincidence plays a big role here. Not all of this can by explained by anything else, and coincidences actually explain a lot more in this world than what we usually even realise.
 
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