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TenniStory: Hubert Hurkacz is a nice guy who isn’t finishing last
Polish tennis isn't just Iga. We caught up with the F1-loving, dart-throwing and supremely motivated Hubi—along with his well-bearded coach, Craig Boynton.
Published Jan 04, 2023
WATCH: Our time with Hubert Hurkacz and coach Craig Boynton, at Saddlebrook
Nice guys don’t finish last.
After a breakout season in 2021 in which he won his first Masters 1000 title in Miami and made the semifinals of Wimbledon, Hubert Hurkacz remained in form, finishing the 2022 season inside the Top 10 for the second straight year.
One of the major contributors to the 25-year-old Pole’s recent success has been his ongoing partnership with veteran coach Craig Boynton.
Boynton has coached a long list of ATP professionals including Jim Courier, Mardy Fish, John Isner and Sam Querrey, among others.
“Hubi’s easy going. He’s funny. He’s got a dry sense of humor,” said Boynton from his home base outside of Tampa at the Saddlebrook Resort. “I have said it many times but he is the guy you want dating your daughter coming from a father.”
The duo first joined forces in 2020, and Hubi’s stock has been on the rise ever since.
While practicing at Saddlebrook with fellow American Mackie McDonald, Hurkacz keeps the the mood light with his dry humor and his quick wit.
“His personality is pretty funny. A little goofy, fun to just joke around with and just have fun,” said McDonald. “One of the nicest guys in the locker room for sure.”
Although Hurkacz did not reach beyond the fourth round at Grand Slam in 2022, he had a strong season, winning his fifth career title in Halle, and also coming within a set of winning his second Masters 1000 title in Canada.
It will be interesting to see what’s next for the Boynton and Hurkacz partnership as they prepare for the 2023 season, but one thing is clear: Hubi isn't satisfied.
“He’s not motivated by the money, that’s not why he plays. He plays because he loves the sport and he wants to maximize,” Boynton says. “It’s not going to surprise me when he keeps moving up and up. He’s a really good tennis player. I mean a really good tennis player.”
Having already made history by becoming the highest ranked male tennis player ever from Poland, Hurkacz is eyeing bigger achievements in the near future and the coming years.
“I love playing tennis, love competing. Playing in front of big crowds it’s something I always dreamt of. I just want to be a better player and a better person. My dream is to win some really big events.”