A few weeks removed from a final run in Sofia to end his 2020 season, Vasek Pospisil joins the TENNIS.com Podcast to talk all things on court and off.
The 30-year-old Canadian turned pro back in 2007 and would make his biggest splash in 2014 when he won Wimbledon (with Jack Sock) and climbed to No. 25 in the world in singles. Now he's soaring back up the ranks after returning from back surgery in 2019.
This year, Pospisil reached the final of Montpellier and Sofia, and the fourth round of the US Open, helping him finish his best season since 2015 at No. 61.
"Ten years ago I'd be concerned I'm getting too old to make any kind of new milestone runs or anything," he says. "But now that everyone's in their mid-30s playing the best tennis of their careers then maybe I've got something up my sleeve coming soon."
He's been even more busy off the court. During his injury hiatus, on top of gaining 24 pounds (something he laughs at now), he began creating the Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA). That's not all the off-court developments for Pospisil. When the tour was shut down, he co-hosted the digital ATP-WTA show Tennis United with Bethanie Mattek-Sands and co-founded a functional mushroom supplement company called Hekate. Though he gained viral fame for chugging maple syrup in Montpellier, he swears by the mushroom powder that eases inflammation and boosts recovery efforts.
In August, Pospisil and Novak Djokovic launched the PTPA with the support of most of their peers. It hasn't been easy as the power struggle on the ATP tour intensifies, and recently, Djokovic and Pospisil were in the news for trying to return to the ATP Player Council.
"We basically don't have any information and the tournaments don't need to provide anything and don't need to be transparent at all," he says. "And that's not a business partnership. And especially when we're the product, where people come in and pay money to watch the players play. It's nothing confrontational. We're not here to be confrontational at all."
Pospisil clears the air about the PTPA's intentions and his reasons for accepting nomination for the Council, which was quickly blocked by the ATP. He gives an inside take on why tennis needs the PTPA, how he gained support and what the association's status is going into 2021.
"Obviously, Rome wasn't built in a day, as the expression goes," he says. "But right now, we are in the middle of drafting the bylaws, which is basically the structure and everything written on a contract to how it would actually operate. And so, the idea [is] that we'll get the bylaws drafted and we'll gather the support from the players, and also, make key hires."
The views, information, and/or opinions expressed are solely those of the podcast creators and do not necessarily represent those of The Tennis Channel, Inc., its affiliates or subsidiaries.