The 21-year-old tennis star Jiri Lehecka said he always idolized Roger Federer when he was young. But today his idol is another great champion, on whom Lehecka based his style of play: Tomas Berdych, true idol at home, and true idol for Jari.
The young Czech tennis player explained: “When I was little, Roger was my idol. I’ve always loved his game and his varied style. Then, as I got older and got into tennis and looked in the mirror to figure out what kind of player I was, I tried to focus my game and my style on Tomas Berdych.
When I was 16, my coach was Jaroslav Navratil, who is the father of Michal, my current coach. He’s the one who got Tomas into the top 10, and he’s been with him for a long time. Maybe if you can notice some specific details in my game, which may seem a bit similar to Tomas’s, like forehand, something like that, then it’s a work of Jaro who took me under his guidance when I was 16 years old.
Tomas was the one I looked forward to and watched his Davis Cup games and everything. So I’ve seen some similarities in our games.”
The Rise of Jiri Lehecka
Jiri Lehecka is undoubtedly one of the purest emerging talents on the world tennis scene.
The current number 47 in the ranking, who is currently the Czech tennis player no.1, made himself known to the general public with the first quarterfinals reached in a Grand Slam, precisely at the Australian Open, where he stopped in front of the finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Even the semifinal in Doha confirmed his great potential. When he was just 16, he was taken by Jaroslav Navratil, who guided Tomas Berdych to success. Now Lehecka works with Michal Navratil, Jaroslav’s son. From here you can guess the boundless esteem for the former number 4 in the world.