Jonas BjÃ¶rkman, a former Swedish tennis figure, will be the captain of the Swedish selection padel. Padel Magazine meets him to discuss his new position, and his ambitions in the padel.
Swedish team captain
Franck Binisti: Can you tell us how you arrived at the captaincy of the national team of padel Swedish?
Jonas Björkman:“It happened by surprise two weeks ago. Five years ago, we launched our club chain of padel Jobs. So I have been very committed to our business over the past five years as we grow. I started playing a few tournaments and really having fun. ”
“Four weeks ago, I received a call from the federation offering me this position. The main reason is that they asked the top 20 players, and my name came up the most. It was decisive for me and I hope I can bring my tennis experience to it. ”
Franck Binisti: Do you have an explanation of the magnitude of the padel in Sweden ?
Jonas BjÃ¶rkman :"It's incredible. I think it's a boom similar to the one Spain experienced earlier. The key factor was the large number of Swedish travelers who discovered it. We were able to arouse people's curiosity when we implemented the padel in Sweden. When you start to play, you progress and have fun quickly. ”
“In tennis it is much more difficult to learn to play, whereas in padel, just take the racket and have fun. ”
Franck Binisti: In tennis, you were a specialist in doubles, that should help you padel, is not it?
Jonas Björkman:"I think yes. In addition, I was a very offensive player in singles, and I climbed the net a lot. My strength in singles allowed me to become the doubles player that I have become. At padel, for volleys, and half volleys it was easier. The most difficult task has been to let the ball bounce against the glass. In tennis, if the ball passes the point is over. I used to play a “padel-tennis ”, but now I can say that I play padel ! "
35 clubs padel
Franck Binisti: Your adventure in the padel started with your investment. Do you want to keep investing?
Jonas Björkman:"We have 35 PDL centers open right now. We will be opening many more this year, including a PDL center in Zurich. We also start with the Norvège, and the centers will open later this year. ”
Franck Binisti: Do you also invest in tennis, or only in padel ?
Jonas BjÃ¶rkman :“I haven't made any investment in tennis. I love this sport, I am a commentator at Eurosport. My passion is still tennis, but the padel allows me to play again. It has become a business, because there are great opportunities."
“I want to pass on my experience”
Franck Binisti: Can we imagine you as a player for the national team of padel ?
Jonas BjÃ¶rkman :"I do not think so. It's not fair that I'm on the team, I'm too old. My level is probably good enough if I prepare myself. But in my new position I prefer pass on to the new generation players from padel. "
Franck Binisti: You have won the Davis Cup three times. Is it a goal for you to be the captain of the national tennis team?
Jonas BjÃ¶rkman "No more now. After my career, it was a possibility but it was never offered to me. I was an assistant captain for a year. Now, I don't look for this anymore, I prefer to do this in the padel because it's a new sport. Besides, I'm very busy now. ”
“More partners, fewer enemies”
Franck Binisti: What are your goals with the Swedish selection?
Jonas Björkman:"Concerning the european championships, I think it will all depend on whether Spain will participate or not. If they play, our goal will be to be between 2nd and 4th place. On the euro denier, Sweden finished 3rd. ”
"Concerning the World's Championships, we want to be in the top 8. "
Franck Binisti: We will probably have two European Championships again this year. What do you think about this situation? Which European Championship will Sweden go to?
Jonas BjÃ¶rkman : “I think it's not good for our sport. If sport is to grow internationally, more partnerships between federations are needed. It is the same situation betweenAPT and the WPT. You cannot have organizations that fight. We must find a way to work together to make the padel. You have to think about the long term and not the short term. I think we need more partners, and fewer enemies. ”
“As a tennis player, I am shocked by this situation. Sweden will not go for two Euros. I do not know yet which one we will go to, but the federation does know and will communicate it to me. I will probably find out next week. ”
Find the video interview just below:
From his names, we can guess his Spanish and Italian origins. Lorenzo is a multilingual passionate about sports: journalism by vocation and events by adoration are his two legs. Its ambition is to cover the biggest sporting events (Olympic Games and Worlds). He is interested in the situation of padel in France, and offers prospects for optimal development.