Sota Tani was born in 2002. in Japan, and he came with the group of his peers to train tennis in TC Dinamo Pančevo, with their coach Boško Tešić. Sota play tournaments in Belgrade and across Serbia, and already have very good results: he won U14 Belgrade Open in Reket Club and U14 Zlatibor Open at TC Zlatibor Springs last year, and was runner-up at U14 Belgrade Open at TC Topaco this week. We have great pleasure to introduce this talented tennis player from Japan.
❓ Hi Sota, when have you started to play tennis, and who was your tennis idol?
I started tennis at the age of 5 as Djokovic became my favorite tennis player as he is #1.
❓ Why have you decided to come to Serbia to train tennis?
My coach, Boško Tešić, happens to be Serbian himself and therefore I was granted the opportunity to train in his homeland, starting at the age of 10 and so on. I also loved red clay in general as Serbia is filled with them, varying to because of the high level tournaments I can enter for gain in experience.
❓ Please could you compare junior and kind tennis up to U14 level in Japan and in Serbia?
In my opinion, Serbian U-14 tournaments and players are probably higher in terms of level due to the fact that there are more players in Serbia that tend to have stronger commitment, whilst also having a feeling for hunger in competition.
❓ Do you have good facilities for training in Pančevo and with whom do you play sparring matches the most?
I think that the environment and the training facilities definitely meat a standard of satisfactory due to amounts of courts, space for running and physical training, and so on.
I have done many sparring matches with new people I have meet in Serbia, with the age group ranging from 16 to 18.
❓ How do you spend spare time, have you made friendship with kids from Dinamo?
In my free time in between and after tennis practice sessions, I listen to music, talk with my room mates, and watch tennis highlights to see if I have anything to learn as relaxing is also an important part in tennis.
Before I sleep, I write in my journal about the positives, negatives, improvements and new tactics that I have learned throughout the day.
❓ What do you like the most in Serbia?
Throughout the days in Serbia, I have experienced that the people around are very kind and friendly (especially to foreigners) because back in Japan, people tend to be more serious, strict with rules especially when it comes to not disturbing other people. The girls in Serbian are also obviously the most beautiful in the world.
❓ Could you describe your birthplace, and what you miss the most from Japan?
I have to say that I definitely miss the Japanese food such as sushi. I also miss my family even after having small conversations because I cannot meet them.
❓ Could you share with us your plans for summer season, will you play only in Serbia, or some international tournaments too?
Currently, I have 2 more tournaments to enter throughout this tennis camp, one for U-16 and one for U-14. Afterwards, I will go back to Japan and enter more tournaments until school starts.
Overall, I am having a great time in Serbia and I will try to work to my best abilities for upcoming tournaments.