Robin Soderling – A Starry Future

Player Profiles
By Ajay Singh, January 12th, 2011
Robin Soderling

Robin Soderling

2011 has already started well for 26-year Robin Soderling.  With his January Brisbane championship win over American Andy Roddick, Sweden’s top player usurped the number four ranking from Andy Murray.  Since turning pro in 2001, nothing has come easily for Soderling.

Although he has never won a Grand Slam, his much improved serve and powerful forehand have had him knocking on the door on several occasions.  The baseliner has finished runner-up in the French Open in 2009 and 2010.  He also reached the quarterfinals at both Wimbledon and the U.S. Open in 2010.

Perhaps, most significant has been Soderling’s ability to compete against upper echelon players.  He has had more success against Roger Federer than Rafa Nadal but as his consistent serve has become more effective, he now dominates lesser players.  And, that is how he jump started 2011, polishing off Andy Roddick in straight sets in the finals at Brisbane.

The report on Soderling is that to beat him, you must keep him moving and stay away from his forehand.  Soderling stays fit and works out rigorously but he is slow afoot and uncomfortable on the move.  New coach Claudio Pistolesi continues to work on Soderling’s foot speed.

The last two years have seen Soderling’s fortune rise.  He has now won 7 ATP titles and has an admirable career won-lost record of 277-161.

The son of an attorney, Soderling began playing tennis at age 5.  His mother, Britt-Inge, is a housewife and has always supported Robin.

2010 did not start well for Soderling.  He suffered a first round loss at the Australian Open, where he sees big improvement this season.  In fact, his Melbourne record is a humbling 2-5.  Whether it is the Australian heat or the hard surface, Melbourne has been Soderling’s most difficult event.

After the disappointment at Melbourne, Soderling stormed back, winning his fifth ATP title in Rotterdam.  Later, he defeated Murray, Tsonga and Lopez at Indian Wells before losing to Roddick in the finals.  He added his sixth ATP title in Paris, defeating Gael Monfils in the finals and raised his ATP finals record to 6–11.

At 26, the time has come for Soderling.  Like many of today’s players, he is trapped between two of the greatest tennis players of all time in Federer and Nadal.  To win a Grand Slam, he can no longer be satisfied to reach the quarters or the semis or even the finals.  The key for Robin is to start believing he can win Grand Slam titles, regardless of who is in his path.  2011 could well be the year that he not only breaks into the top three but also picks up his first major championship.

One thing is for sure, Federer and Nadal are very aware of this dangerous foe.  That is quite an accomplishment in itself.

Birth DateAugust 14, 1984
ResidenceMonaco, Monte Carlo
Weight192 lbs
Year Turned Pro2001
Current Rank – Singles4
Current Rank – Doubles0
Career Prize Earnings$9,099,268
Year-To- Date – Earnings$73,000
Grand Slam (Singles)0
Australian Open0
French Open0
U.S. Open0
Grand Slam Doubles0


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