Many of the top tennis players in the world have to be away from their families at Christmas, as they cannot afford to take time-off from practice. They have to travel to the most suitable places to do this, and it often means they are separated from their loved ones when most people are together for the festive season.
So where did the top male and female players spend Christmas 2010?
Roger Federer, the World Number 2 is one of the few Top 10 players who could actually spend Christmas with his family. They are in Abu Dhabi where he is looking forward to a rest and a peaceful time. “The twins are still too young to even realize what is going on around them,” he said. “But we shoot a lot of pictures which they can watch later.”
He will play his first tournament in Abu Dhabi since winning the World Championships and he hopes to win there, as well as toppling Rafael Nadal from his Number 1 spot.
How the British Number Ones Spent Christmas
Britain’s Number 1 female player Elena Baltacha kept up her normal training schedule over Christmas, spending four hours a day on court with sessions in the morning and afternoon. If she has got time she also goes to the gym.
She arrived in Auckland, New Zealand on Christmas Day so she can get ready for the Australian Open which begins mid-January. She is also playing in two WTA warm-up events before the Open begins on January 13th.
It is Baltacha’s first Christmas away from home, and she was going try to eat a special meal with her mother who flew out with her. She would have liked her boyfriend to spend Christmas in Australia with her, but if she could have anything she wanted she would like a new pair of feet so she could be quicker around the court.
Andy Murray, the British Number 1 is sacrificing his festive holidays in his bid to beat his Grand Slam duck. He is spending Christmas in Miami for a month of intensive training ahead of the new season.
He believes missing a family Christmas is a price worth paying to achieve his goal. After Christmas he heads for Australia to try and achieve success at the Australian Open.
Robin Soderling had an extended vacation in the Maldives before beginning his preparations at the ATP World Tour Training Camp in Monte Carlo. Despite his busy training schedule he took time out to attend the Monte Carlo Kids Club Christmas Party and posed for photos with Santa. He also spent time signing autographs for the children
Vera Zvonerava Celebrates Two Christmases
Russian player Zvonerava says “To me Christmas is an important family holiday. Unfortunately I am not usually at home on December 25th because I am far away doing pre-season training, but me and my team won’t forget to make it a special day with a nice dinner and presents.
“We celebrate Russian Christmas on January 7th so I’ll be making lots of telephone calls to my friends and family back home that day.
“‘I’ve done all my shopping online as I had already decided what to give everyone, but I will probably need to make a last minute run to the mail for some funny last minute gifts.”
Svetlana Kuznetsova left her home in Moscow on December 5th for Dubai to adjust to the warm weather, and practice at the Jumerah Hotel. She will head for Auckland in New Zealand on December 27th. Although she misses her home at Christmas, in Dubai she can swim and jog outdoors between on-court matches.
World Number 1 Caroline Wozniacki is another world-class player who was lucky enough to spend Christmas with her family before flying to Thailand on Boxing Day to take part in a commercial with Kim