Tennis Prose



Biofile: Peng Shuai Interview

Peng Shuai - Flickr - chascow.jpg

By Scoop Malinowski

Status: Former WTA No. 1 ranked doubles player. The first Chinese player, male or female – singles or doubles, to achieve the world No. 1 ranking. Winner of 19 career WTA singles titles including two this year.

Ht: 5-8  Wt: 140

DOB: January 8. 1986  In: Xiangtan, Hunan, China

Tennis Inspiration:  “Steffi Graf.”

First Tennis Memory:  “I started at eight years old. And then I’m not like strong, I’m small and skinny. And my mom think I need to get stronger. My mom had two brothers who are tennis players and that’s why I chose to play tennis.”

Why Do You Love Playing Tennis: “Well, when I was young I didn’t love it. Now I think I love more than before. I think it brings me a lot of happiness but also a lot of tough times and sad, they are kind of together. I feel, in the court to play the match, a lot of time you are thinking how to play the opponent. I just love this game. Even if I lose. I really want to enjoy this short tennis career.”

Last Book Read:  ‘Oh my god. That was a long time ago [laughs]. A lot of times I read half and don’t finish it [laughs]. I didn’t read a book lately. All the time playing in the Chinese system I  talk to friends, all this. In the room I look at movies.”

Greatest Sports Moment: “Well, I didn’t finish my career yet. I think it’s tough to say now [laughs]. I’d like to answer in a couple years. I think I’ve had some great moments. But it’s really tough to say it’s the best.”

Most Painful Moment:  “Oh lots. Too much [laughs]. I think in 2006. Yeah. (Injuries? Bad year?) it’s tough to say. It’s just really hard for me to talk about it.”

Favorite Tournaments:   “I think I like… tough for me to say also [laughs]. Maybe, for me, China Open. Because it’s home.”

Closest Friends On Tour:  “Close friends… how close [laughs]? Chuang Chia-Jung.  Sometimes I talk with my doubles partner. But not like best (friend).”

Funniest Players Encountered:  “I think it’s Chuang Chia-Jung, Yan Zi. When we are three together we always make some jokes. And John McEnroe.”

Strangest Match:  “[Laughs] I don’t remember that [laughs]. I think if it did happen I was just happy it was over!”

Favorite Players To Watch:  “I don’t have one. There’s many players, because they play differently. So it’s many players. I like to watch Clijsters, Wozniacki, Bartoli. I cannot play like a Rafa [laughs]. Like to watch. Federer. And Andy Murray,.”

Favorite Sport Outside Tennis:  “I like many sports. Badminton, soccer. Not really (to) like play. Also ping pong and swimming, yeah. Just play like a little game of soccer.”

Best You Ever Felt On Court: “Well, I don’t know what’s the best I played. Because I’m always amazed … sometimes I do it and I lose. And sometimes I play little good and maybe I win. So, the best… I don’t know yet.”

Career Accomplishments:  Achieved WTA world No. 1 ranking in doubles in February 2014; Won 2010 Asian Games gold medal; Won 2013 Wimbledon doubles and 2014 French Open doubles with Su-Wei Hsieh; Has career singles wins over Venus Williams, Hingis, Petrova, Myskina, Na, Radwanska, Safina, Clijsters, Mauresmo, Schiavone, Jankovic, Ivanovic, Kuznetsova, Zvonareva.

More Biofile interviews like this at

Peng and Scoop Malinowski at 2005 US Open.

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