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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Finally, a forum for Jérémy. :)

His 1st rnd presser (I'll let one of the native Frenchies translate ;) ) He looks super cute in the video interview btw.

http://www.rolandgarros.com/fr_FR/news/interviews/2009-05-25/200905251243280555608.html?promo=personalization

Roland Garros Website said:
Interview de Jérémy CHARDY

J. CHARDY/T. ALVES

6/2 7/6 6/3

Q. Jérémy, il y a eu un changement de joueur uneheure avant le match. Tu es resté concentré? Comment as-tu vécu ce changement d'adversaire au dernier moment ?

R. Je ne le savaismême pas ! Heureusement, avant mon match, un coach argentin m'a dit que l'onavait changé, que mon adversaire ne jouerait pas. J'ai été me renseigner, ilavait oublié de me le dire ! Cela n'aurait pas changé grand-chose, j'ai eule temps de préparer ma tactique. L'adversaire, cela ne change pas grand-chose.Il faut bien être centré sur soi-même. Après, il avait déjà perdu dans cetournoi, il fallait bien qu'il perde une seconde fois !

Q. Il y avait une émotion particulière quand tu es arrivésur le court ? Tu avais de bons souvenirs j'imagine !

R. Depuis le débutde l'année, il me tardait de revenir à Roland Garros, car j'avais vécu de trèsbons moments l'an dernier. J'étais content de rejouer sur le court 1, j'aimebien ce court. Après, cela s'est bien passé, c'est encore un bon moment.

Q. Au niveau du jeu, tu as particulièrement bien servi,mais en revanche, tu avais un peu de difficultés à relancer, non ?

R. J'ai bien servi,je suis assez content de mon service tout du long. C'est juste au second, je mefais breaker deux fois, cela m'énerve un peu, mais dans l'ensemble, j'aibien servi. J'ai fait un match solide. A part dans le second où cela a été durde gagner la manche, je n'ai pas perdu d'énergie, c'est l'essentiel. J'ai gagnéen 3 sets en faisant un match solide, pas exceptionnel, mais j'ai gagnécomme il faut. C'était le plus important aujourd'hui.

Q. Un mot sur le tie-break. Tu sauves une balle de set,tu conclus à la cinquième, c'est le tournant du match, 2 sets à zéro, cen'est plus pareil.

R. C'est sûr, pourl'autre, déjà mentalement, c'est beaucoup plus dur, car s'il veut gagner, ilfaut qu'il en gagne 3 autres derrière ! Cette année, le tie-break meréussit bien, je n'en ai pas perdu beaucoup. Je suis content d'en avoir gagnéun de plus. Après, cela ne se joue pas à grand-chose mais au tie-break, c'estcelui qui va le plus chercher qui le gagne. J'ai fait des mauvais choix dansmes balles pour finir le set, mais l'essentiel est de l'avoir gagné et de tuerun peu le match.

Q. Le fait d'être aujourd'hui attendu à Roland Garrost'ajoute un peu de pression ou au contraire, cela met du piment ?

R. Non, je ne mesens pas attendu plus que cela à Roland Garros. Pour moi, Roland Garros, c'est le tournoi qui représente unerécompense, puisque tout les entraînements durs que l'on fait, tous lestournois dans l'année, toutes les choses que l'on a faites depuis tout petit,Roland Garros, c'est un peu le cadeau que l'on nous offre. On a la chance depouvoir jouer en France dans un Grand Chelem avec le public qui nous soutient. C'estdur d'avoir des conditions aussi belles. Depuis tout petit, je rêvais de jouerici. J'ai juste du bonheur de jouer à Roland Garros. En plus quand on gagne,c'est encore mieux.

Q. Un mot sur le prochain tour. C'est Bolleli, qui agagné en 5 sets.

R. Cela ne m'étonnepas tant que cela. Si j'avais dû parier sur le match, j'aurais dit qu'il legagnerait. Berdych joue bien, mais sur terre battue, il est un peu friable, iln'est pas si solide que cela. Bolleli, la terre battue est la surface qu'ilpréfère. Sur un match en 5 sets, je l'aurais donné favori. Contre lui,j'ai déjà joué, ce sera un avantage. Et puis, je vais bien préparer ma tactique.C'est un match que j'ai envie de jouer. Je pense que j'ai la place de gagner. J'espèreque je ferai un bon match et surtout que je gagnerai !

Q. L'an dernier en 8ème de finale. A quoi ressembleraitun Roland Garros réussi pour toi, cette année ?

R. Je ne me suispas donné d'objectif de résultat, je me concentre sur mon jeu et essaye deprendre un maximum de plaisir et de me donner à 100 % sur chacun de mesmatches, pour ne pas avoir de regrets. Depuis le début de l'année, je jouebien, je suis en confiance. J'espère que j'en profiterai ici et que j'irai leplus loin possible. A la fin du tournoi, je verrai si je suis vraimentsatisfait ou pas.

Q. Tu regardes plus loin que le deuxième tour ou pas dutout ?

R. Non, je neconnaissais même pas mon deuxième tour, ce sont les journalistes qui me l'ont appris !Toute l'année, je ne regarde pas les tableaux. C'est toujours mon entraîneur quime dit contre qui je joue au premier tour et une fois que j'ai gagné, il me ditqui sera mon prochain adversaire. Je n'ai pas envie de regarder, car cela nesert à rien d'essayer de faire des projections, déjà car on ne sait pas qui vagagner. Il faut se concentrer sur soi et sur le match que l'on doit jouer. Quandon regarde le tableau, parfois, on se projette trop en avant et on oublie lematch et le combat qu'il y a à jouer le jour même.

Il vaut mieux seconcentrer sur le match, découvrir son tableau petit à petit.

Q. Le fait d'avoir passé la semaine d'avant à Dusseldorf,loin de l'agitation d'ici, t'a fait du bien ?

R. Oui, l'andernier, je l'avais passé à Paris. Cette année, je n'avais pas envie. Aller àDusseldorf était une bonne occasion pour moi, mais si je ne l'avais pas eue, jene pense pas que je l'aurais passée à Paris non plus. J'ai pu me préparer commeje voulais, être tranquille pendant une semaine, bien me reposer et travailler.J'avais bien planifié ma semaine pour essayer d'arriver le mieux possible ici.
 

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Don't understand a word but I could sit and listen/watch that all day long!! :inlove:

Thanks Jen ;)
 

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He doesn't have his interview on the RG website this time? :confused:

Here's the article in L'Equipe today:

Strangely enough, he keeps saying in interviews that he wasn't having a very good feeling in the first two sets and found it a bit weird to get an easy lead. He wasn't moving well, etc. Then when he was 2 sets to 0 up, he let Bolelli play his game. Fontang says it happens to have lapses of concentration during a match, but that one really was too long and would have been fatal against a better player. But it should be a good experience for Jim.
Luckily Jim turned into a tornado during the 5th set. "When I sat down on my chair before the 5th set, I said to myself: 'Stop thinking about your tennis, your sensations. It will be a mental thing, the winner will be the one who wants it the most'. I forced myself and I came back on the court with the attitude of a warrior, looking him in the eye!"
He beat Haas in Delray a few weeks ago, Haas' game suits him well, according to Fontang.
 

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Thanks for the translation :hatoff:

Allez against Haas! :rocker2:
 

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Here's a summary of the article of last time in L'Equipe about the "Chardy team", a bit too much information maybe, but they have a very special approach, I found it quite interesting:


It's the story of Frédéric, Jérémy, Jean-Jacques, Étienne, Olivier, Alain, Jacques and Ken. A team which looks like an UFO in French tennis.

His coach, Frédéric Fontang, met Jim eleven years ago and decided to pass his knowledge on him since he wanted to stay in his home town, Pau. With the passing years he has built around Jim a big team with three physios of Pau, a physical trainer from the South of France too, a mental coach from Paris and an American agent. Most of them are people he had met during his own career (Fontang was ranked 59th in 1991). They don't belong to the inner circles of French tennis and bring the required innovation touch. Fontang built this team with the idea to keep working with people sharing the same values, no matter if it was working or not at first.
He is the project manager. He brings up questions which might help Jim to progress, for example how to better finish his matches or to improve his stance on the FH side, and each member of the team has to make his contribution to that issue then. Real teamwork.
Everything is quantified with clinical precision. Every two months there is an update with the mental coach. Every 5-6 weeks the three physios meet for a debriefing. When he's in Pau, Jim goes to a different physio every day. And each physio now follows him on the tour during 4 weeks.

The 1st physio, Jean-Jacques Peyroutou:
He's in charge of the "mechanical aspects". The hip was one of the focus points lately, for example, and each team member brought his own competence on that topic. Jérémy likes to take his time, that's why it took him some time to be at his best. He's extremely nice. An emotional guy who needs this "cocoon".

The 2nd physio/ostheo, Étienne Labat:
He's the last recruit and was together with Jim this year in Johannesburg and Munich. Jim's lucky charm, maybe?
His area: stretching and relaxation. And it helps, Jim hasn't been injured for a while. They don't work on symptoms anymore, but on becoming more competitive. Jim is "adorable" in everyday's life on the tour. Very endearing.

The 3rd physio, Olivier Sourbès ("the poet"):
He works with a special method which he calls the "physiological chain", whatever it means. It might seem complicated to have three different physios, all the more since they all have strong personalities, but it's not a problem because they trust each other. Jim visits all of them according to a very accurate schedule when he's in Pau (for example he sees Sourbès every Wednesday and Saturday at set times).

The physical trainer, Alain Jacquet:
A real specialist who started working with Fontang in 1988 with immediate effects. Jim has the same qualities as Fontang in his opinion, he's very even-tempered, with the spontaneity of the attacking player on top of that. Actually a showman, but still reserved.
Stamina tests made in Pau showed that Jim produces lactates above 18 km/h only, which is quite unusual for such an explosive player.
"In the French system everybody gets the same 'grub'. Jérémy gets 'caterer food'."

The mental coach (and even more), Jacques Hervet:
He has worked with foreign Juniors and Fontang wishes he would have been his coach. His main goal is to settle into a positive coach-player dynamic like Passos-Kuerten, Edberg-Pickard, Toni Nadal-Rafa. He's an adept of the durable management to avoid phases of euphoria or distress.
He stresses that coaches in the French system often are alloted to a category of age. While the approach with Jérémy is to work with a stable structure in order to anticipate.

The agent, Ken Meyerson:
He was already Fontang's agent in 1989 and is very close to Fred's family.
"I love Chardy." He had already noticed him when he won Wimby in 2005 and really liked the match against Nalby last year in Roland. His charm offensive worked and Jim signed with them so he's now part of a team based in Miami with Roddick and Gonzo.
His company has been just bought up by Lagardère Unlimited.
 

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And the interview of Jim:

Eleven years with the same coach, it's so unusual...
- Jim has always had blind faith in "Fred" who trained him little by little the way he wanted to. They've been through tough and great times together, which has united them even more. He has never even considered working with somebody else.

The advantage of this big team?
- Jim used to play football and likes the team spirit. It's important in tennis to have a solid basis because tennis players can lose their confidence very quickly. The 3 physios, for example, are very different (56 y. old, 42 and 30) and he has a different relationship with each of them, which is great. The mental coach Hervet has been a player himself, which is very helpful too. And they've all committed to a long-term project.
One of his main rules also was to stay on his native soil and to work with people coming from that region.
 

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FIRST TIME ATP WORLD TOUR WINNER SPOTLIGHT: JEREMY CHARDY

by Greg Sharko | 20.07.2009

Jeremy Chardy captured his first ATP World Tour title and became the first Frenchman to win the MercedesCup in Stuttgart since Henri Leconte in 1984, after defeating fourth seed Victor Hanescu of Romania 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 on 19 July. Chardy is the fourth first-time ATP World Tour titlist in 2009. The 22-year-old Chardy rose 11 places to a career-high No. 32 in the South African Airways 2009 ATP Rankings.

ATPWorldTour.com caught up with Chardy after his maiden title.

How does it feel to capture your first ATP World Tour title?
It’s so good. My form this year has been very good. I was very nervous at the start and found it difficult to close out in the third set. It was tough at the end.

As a youngster growing up was it a dream of one day winning an ATP World Tour title?
Yes, of course, for every player it is a dream to win one title. I have had a good week for my first victory and I want to add other titles.

Did you prepare any differently going into today from your first final in Johannesburg in February?
This final was different to [Jo-Wilfried] Tsonga in Johannesburg [at the SA Tennis Open] and it was a very tough match. Today, I had beaten Hanescu already this year so I was more nervous prior to the Stuttgart final. [It was] the anticipation of what might happen.

You started slowly against Hanescu and then you were able to turn it around. What did you change in your game that enabled you to come back and win?
After I lost the first set, I changed my tactics to go to the net more. The match definitely changed in the second set.

You played Hanescu twice before, winning earlier this year on hard courts and then losing last year to him on clay. What was your approach going into the match with him today?
With Victor, he is a very good player from the baseline on clay courts. I thought I needed to make different types of shots, slow and fast shots. I also needed to attack the net to win points.

After winning your first ATP World Tour title, what are your goals the rest of the season? Would you like to reach a certain ranking by the end of the year?
Now my first goal is to reach the Top 32, to ensure I am seeded for the US Open. I would also like to win another title!

You are the second French winner on the ATP World Tour this year behind Tsonga, and you are one of eight French players in the Top 50. What are your thoughts on the state of French tennis?
French tennis is very strong at present. We help and motivate one another to play and train better. With [Gilles] Simon and Tsonga at the top, it is good for everybody.

Who were the players you admired and liked to watch growing up?
My favourite player was Pete Sampras, I liked his game. Now, I admire Roger Federer – I like him so much.

You play well on all surfaces, do you have a favourite surface and why?
I don’t know which one I prefer. With my coach, I have worked hard to play on every surface. I think I play well regardless of the surface.

Is there anyone you would like to acknowledge for helping you get where you are today in tennis?
I would like to thank my coach of ten years, my family, girlfriend and friends.

atpworldtour.com
 

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Stamina tests made in Pau showed that Jim produces lactates above 18 km/h only, which is quite unusual for such an explosive player.
I had not understood this part at first : actually I could read the French article :

it means that 18 km/h is quite high to produce lactates, which means that Jeremy has good qualities to be a longtime runner :yeah:
 

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Some things interestings in the article. I let the translation to someone else :p

Thanks a lot for the scan, just a summary:

It's an article written after Stuttgart. The journalist pictures him and Fontang on the road to Hamburg in his beautiful Mercedes coupé, but they actually took the plane and had the car delivered in Pau - easier for the Stuttgart organizers than last year when Delpo won it.
Jim hopes this title will help him to be on the DC team because it's something he would really like to experience. A recognition.
Moderation and discretion are the keywords with the Chardy-Fontang team. They're a special case in French tennis. Everybody is either "FFT" (French Tennis Association) or "Lagardère", they chose to be "Béarnais" (the region Jérémy comes from) taking advantage of the national training structures. Fontang says the French system is excellent, but "kills 'couples'" (= the coach/player relationship) - the Chardy-Fontang pair avoided that by cultivating their independence and the attachment to Jérémy's village near Pau, Boeil-Bezing. "I wish you could see my village, it's so beautiful, with the mountains all around..."
Jérémy still has his room in the house of his parents, with posters of Kuerten, Mauresmo, Pierce, Grosjean, Agassi on the walls. But he's having a house built opposite to the one of his parents and he will move into it in September with his gf.
He practices at the tennis club of Pau with the 3 best local players or with Fontang himself. There are posters of the Davis Cup matches played in Pau in 1999 and 2002 on the walls of the tennis club. Jérémy was there as a ballkid: "I remember Kuerten, Meligeni, Pioline. Grosjean who had put on a clown hat!"
Then the same stuff as last time about his 3 physios from Pau who follow him in turn and complement each other.
That's how he progresses, at his rate, quietly, continuously. Never showing off, even in his brand new Mercedes. Fontang doesn't need to repeat him all the time the motto: "In order that it lasts, never look at the short term".

And the pics:
Jérémy when he was 11 years old and started to train with Fontang. They've never parted ways since then.
The story with Grosjean he mentions in the article, when he was a ballkid in Davis Cup.
His room at home (a pic taken after this great run in Roland-Garros in 2008).
And a pic of his old car (the Renault Clio of his grand-father) and his new one.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the article, interesting read.

I like the setup he has with Fontang and his local club, seems to be working just fine for him, no reason to work with the bigger French giant systems. They just swallow players up anyway and that point about the player/coach relationship is so true!

It's good that he's so grounded. The car thing was just too cute.

I hope he does get to play Davis Cup. :)
 

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Thanks for the article and translation. Some great points there.

Jérémy :hearts:
 

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Long interview with Jim in the latest edition of French tennis magazine:

Even if I come from the Pyrenees, I suck in skiing...
We have something in common, Jim, even if I am Austrian, I suck in skiing, too. :haha:
 

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In the new issue of Deuce:
On The Rise... Jeremy Chardy
by Alison Kim | 10.11.2009

Loyal and family orientated Jeremy Chardy is intent on keeping his feet on the ground despite clinching his first ATP World Tour title and rising from No. 73 to No. 32 in the South African Airways 2009 ATP Rankings. Surrounded by a strong support team anchored by his coach of 10 years, the Frenchman has shown that success can be homegrown.

When Jeremy Chardy first came to train at his new academy in Pau a decade ago, Frederic Fontang gave the promising youngster a gift: Paolo Coelho's novel, The Alchemist, a tale of a shepherd boy who follows his dreams to foreign lands only to discover the treasure he seeks waiting at home.

The book became a favourite of Chardy's, not only for sentimental reasons, but also for its many important messages.

"I gave him this book to read because the life of tennis player is a lot of travel, you can win money, you can see a lot of good things," says Fontang, a former World No. 59. "But you need to know that the simple things are good also. Your family, your friends, those things are like stone; it's not moving. It gives you confidence. And after that, you can travel, you can go every week to play tournaments. I think it's important to know that those things are indeed the essence of things.

"It's good to have dreams, in life it's important, but sometimes you can have everything close. You don't have to find it so far. In The Alchemist, the story is like that."

Chardy's own story reflects those very ideas. The 22-year-old Frenchman, who prizes loyalty and family above all else, has reached the upper echelon of the sport without leaving his hometown in the south-west of France – circumventing the traditional route of training with the French Tennis Federation or Team Lagardère in Paris.

"It's very important for me," confirms Chardy, who lives in the village of Boeil-Bezing. "When I don't play, I need to go home to see my father, my mother, my grandpapa. We are very close."

Though his recent success has afforded him a couple perks, it has not changed his priorities. After winning his first ATP World Tour title in July, he upgraded the Clio he inherited from his grandfather with the Mercedes E350 he received from the title sponsors, but faithfully kept his first car. And while he moved out of his parents' home this past autumn, he chose a new place just five minutes away to ensure they would still be close by.

Fontang has always been at the centre of Chardy's personal and professional development, bringing together a strong group of individuals dedicated to their same values and goals. Over the past 10 years, the team has grown to include three physiotherapists from Pau – Olivier Sourbès, Jean-Jacques Peyroutou and Étienne Labat – a physical trainer from the south of France, Alain Jacquet, and a mental coach, Jacques Hervet, who once worked with Byron Black.

The team gathers on a monthly basis in Pau to discuss the current situation, how they can improve Chardy's level and pinpoint specific goals they're working on for the next month. Every two to three months, they meet as a collective group with Chardy. On the road, 39-year-old Fontang and the physiotherapists take turns travelling. Fontang starts off a three or four tournament stretch and one of the physios takes over for the final week.

The unique arrangement works well for Chardy, who played football throughout his childhood and enjoyed the camaraderie of being on a team. "It's important for me to have a team because it's good for the stability," he admits. "It's good for the confidence too, because I know everybody does the best for me. It's good for my tennis… If I play well, everybody gets more money, so I think it's important to be on the same boat and work together. We have the same goal. I think it's a good thing for everybody."

Right from the start, Fontang knew that Chardy had the attitude and talent to become a professional player. "I saw in the first meeting, in the first practice, that he had enthusiasm, good leg speed and with the hands," he remembers.

Chardy carved out a successful junior career, winning the Wimbledon title and reaching the US Open final to finish as the No. 4-ranked junior in 2005, but he needed to endure a couple of frustrating years on his transition to the ATP World Tour.

The breakthrough came on his country's biggest stage, Roland Garros.

The Parisian crowd had gotten a glimpse of Chardy back in 2006 when he defeated Swedish veteran Jonas Bjorkman on his Grand Slam debut, but they were unprepared for what was to come when he returned two years later.

After opening with a straight-sets win over Portugal's Frederico Gil, the 145th-ranked wild card recipient – playing in just his sixth tour-level event – seemed on the verge of a second-round exit to World No. 7 David Nalbandian. Down two sets, Chardy fell into a 0-40 hole in the first game of the third set.

But with nothing to lose, Chardy found renewed courage. Regaining his composure he erased the deficit, overcame cramps in the fourth set and recovered from an early service break in the fifth set, reeling off six straight games to punctuate his first victory over a Top 10 player. "I don't know what happened. I closed my eyes. Every shot went on the court," Chardy recalls, with a still disbelieving laugh. "It was like a dream."

For members of the Chardy team, the result did not come as a surprise. They had seen Chardy's improvement in the months leading up to the clay-court Grand Slam championship, notably at an ATP Challenger in Marrakech where he finished runner-up to Gael Monfils in two tie-break sets. "We were feeling that something was coming in his game," Fontang explains. "We were expecting this because his level was better and better. It was also good satisfaction. It was logic for me."

With his confidence at an all-time high, France's new star defeated Russian Dmitry Tursunov in straight sets before his run came to an end against Nicolas Almagro of Spain in the fourth round. His performance proved a pivotal moment in Chardy's life, as he surged 51 spots to break into the Top 100 of the South African Airways ATP Rankings. "It was my best moment of my career," says Chardy. "After Roland Garros, my confidence grew. After I beat Nalbandian, I felt I could play good."

During the off-season last year he focused on improving his precision, power and net game. It helped him exceed his team's expectations in 2009. He reached his first tour-level final in February at the inaugural SA Tennis Open in Johannesburg, defeating World No. 13 David Ferrer before falling to countryman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Five months later, he claimed his first ATP World Tour title at the MercedesCup in Stuttgart.

Although he did not sustain the same level of success through the final few months of the season, Chardy finished the season with a 35-28 record overall – exceeding his 2008 match-wins total by 25 – and a No. 32 South African Airways 2009 ATP Ranking ensured him a seeding at next year's Australian Open.

Following his final match at the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, Chardy reflected on his first full year on the ATP World Tour, which included his debut appearance on the French Davis Cup squad in September. "I think my season was great," he said. "When I started the year, the goal was to be Top 50. I reached that goal in a couple of months. After that, I was a competitor always wanting more, which is normal. So you always try to push your goals further. You want to do better."

With the backing of Fontang, who likens Chardy's game to the all-round and attacking game of Roger Federer, Chardy development is in safe hands. "For a tennis player like Jeremy, his progression is step by step. For me, that's important because that means it's something solid," says Fontang. He considers Chardy's good nature an integral part of their homegrown success story, but also believes the "always nice, always smiling" Frenchman could benefit by adopting a more aggressive mentality when on the court. "He needs to believe that he has the shots and everything to go to the next step, to the Top 20."

Learning to control his mentality could also come in handy in his next choice of career, becoming an actor. "It's my dream. I love the cinema," says Chardy, who is drawn to the idea of portraying a wide range of personalities and emotions on the screen – a stark departure from his collected temperament on the tennis court.

But if his taste in movies is any indication, it's highly likely that the roles he undertakes in the future won't stray far from his true character and values. He says of his favourite movie, Meet Joe Black: "It's just beautiful. I love the story, I love the actors inside. When you see this movie, you think about all your family."
http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/DEUCE-Tennis/DEUCE-Finals-2009/Jeremy-Chardy.aspx
 

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http://www.pretorianews.co.za/index.php?fArticleId=5304537

Rising star Chardy still craves movie fame



By Sapa

His tennis career has been on a dizzying ascent since he reached the final of the SA Open at Montecasino last year, but Jeremy Chardy has not forsaken his dream of becoming a movie star.

Meanwhile, however, the 22-year-old engaging tennis stylist with a big serve will be seeking an Oscar of a different kind when he returns to Montecasino early next month - hoping to do better than the defeat he suffered against fellow Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the final of last year's SA Open.

Chardy has been a loyal supporter of South African tennis for the past couple of years. He first played in the SA Open in East London two years ago, where he reached the semi-finals, and last year reached his first ATP tour-level final against Tsonga at Montecasino.

Five months later, after finishing as runner-up in the R25 million SA Open, the steadily improving Chardy claimed his first ATP World Tour title in the Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart.

But last year's world No 32could find it tougher this time round at Montecasino.

The world's 17th-ranked David Ferrer, whom Chardy beat in a dramatic semi-final at Montecasino last year, will also be back, while fellow Frenchman Gael Monfils, ranked the world's No 13, will be in the line-up as the likely top seed.

For all this, Chardy's rise up the rankings from No 73 to No 32 in less than 12 months is almost certain to see him start this year's tournament as the number three seed.

An article in the ATP's official publication describes Chardy as loyal, family-oriented and intent on keeping his feet on the ground.

When Chardy first went to the renowned French tennis academy in Pau about 10 years ago, seasoned coach Frederic Fontang gave the promising youngster a copy of Paulo Coelho's novel, The Alchemist. It's a tale about a shepherd boy who follows his dream to foreign lands only to discover the treasure he is seeking is waiting at home.

The book became a favourite of Chardy's, not only for sentimental reasons, but also for its many important messages.

"I gave him this book to read because the life of a tennis player is a lot of travel, you can win money, you can see a lot of good things," says Fontang. "But you need to know that the simple things in life are what really count in the end."

Chardy's own rise to prominence reflects this. The young Frenchman, who prizes loyalty and family above all else, has reached the upper echelon of the sport without abandoning his roots in the picturesque village of Boeil-Bezing in the south-west of France.

"It's very important for me. When I don't play, I need to go home to see my father, my mother, my grandfather. We are very close."

Chardy believes his big breakthrough came at Roland Garros in the French Open in 2008.

The Parisian crowd had a glimpse of Chardy back in 2006 when he defeated Swedish veteran Jonas Bjorkman in his grand slam debut, but they were unprepared for what was to come when he returned two years later.

After opening with a straight sets win over Portugal's Frederico Gil, the 145th-ranked wild card recipient - playing in just his sixth tour-level event - seemed on the verge of a second-round exit to world No 7 David Nalbandian. Down two sets, Chardy trailed 0-40 in the first game of the third set.

But with nothing to lose, Chardy found renewed courage. Regaining his composure, he erased the deficit, overcame cramp in the fourth set and recovered from an early service break in the fifth set, reeling off six straight games to claim his first victory over a Top 10 player.

"It was the best moment of my career," says Chardy. "After Roland Garros, my confidence grew. After I beat Nalbandian, I realised I could compete at the top level."

He has gone on to claim a place in the powerful French Davis Cup squad alongside players like Tsonga, Monfils and Gilles Simon. But he still dreams of becoming an actor.

"It's my dream," he says. "I love the cinema and the idea of portraying a wide range of personalities and emotions on the screen."

Published on the web by Pretoria News on January 6, 2010.


This doesn't open up though, so no need to try.


P.S. I just read the article Fran posted above this, so it seems this one is just recycling a lot of stuffs. :lol:, but still, nice of them to have him on a newspaper. Maybe will bring him good luck in SA Open this year.
 

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He cracks me up when he talks about his dream of becoming an actor, he's dead serious about it.
Also in the interview for Tennis Magazine that I didn't translate because it was too long, it even was the title ("If somebody wants me to make a casting test, please, here I am!") And then wondering very seriously in the interview "I don't know how I should do this exactly, should I take some lesson, maybe? I really want to be an actor after my tennis career" etc.
 

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And then wondering very seriously in the interview "I don't know how I should do this exactly, should I take some lesson, maybe? I really want to be an actor after my tennis career" etc.
That will defintely help, Jim. :lol:
 
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