For many years now, the name of Stan Wawrinka has been floating around. Now 32, the Lausanne-born superstar looks like his epic career might be in its last few years. Ranked third at the moment in the ATP Rankings, though, he’s shown in recent months and years that he is easily the ‘best of the rest’ after the Djokovic/Murray/Nadal/Federer axis. Under the coaching tutelage of Magnus Norman, Wawrinka has become a feared name in tennis with his right-handed style becoming a very popular method to try and copy for newcomers to the game.
While he’s not a serial medal winner, he’s merely unlucky in the generation he was born in. it would be rare that a nation would have a player better than Wawrinka, nevermind having four or so players on an equal or better footing. In previous generations, it’s no surprise to think that Wawrinka might have been a dominant force in many ways.
Having been playing since the age of 8, the ‘Stanimal’ gave up school at 15 to concentrate on his tennis career – and it looks to have paid off. He comes from a very strong background, with both of his parents working on an organic farm assisting in the assistance of disabled people. A kind-hearted person himself, Wawrinka stand out amongst sportsmen as a compassionate and empathetic individual.
Known for his wonderful backhand, which he himself considers his finest weapon, Wawrinka has been defeating opponents’ courtesy of it for many, many years. He’s been popular both at home and abroad, famously beating Federer himself to the 2013 Swiss of the Year award, a massive Swiss award decided by the TV audience of the nation.
He also served as part of the ATP’ Player Council from 2014 to 2016, before leaving. A talented and engaging sportsman, he’s reached four semi-finals of various ATP Finals, winning 11 straight finals across various venues between 2014 and 2016, meaning he has lifted a whopping 15 medals in his career.
His Grand Slam career is also impressive, having beaten Novak Djokovic twice and Nadal once. He beat Nadal in 2014 to win the Australian Open, before defeating Djokovic in the 2015 French Open and the 2016 US Open.
He’s reached the Quarter Finals at least of each of the major Grand Slam tournaments, too, showcasing his incredible determination to be a top name in the sport despite overwhelming competition. By far and away the ‘best of the rest’, Wawrinka himself has proven to be a top-level competitor at the most elite levels of the sport.