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Richard Krajicek      

Former Wimbledon Champion and Professional Tennis Player

Richard Krajicek was born in Rotterdam as the son of Czech refugees. At age 4, as he started playing tennis, he got his Dutch Passport . As a youngster he won the Dutch 12-under and 14-under National Championships, twice each. He turned professional in 1989, and in 1991 won his first top-level singles title at Hong Kong, and his first tour doubles title in Hilversum. In 1992, Krajicek reached his first Grand Slam semi-final at the Australian Open, but then had to withdraw from his semi-final match due to a shoulder injury. The following year, he reached the semi-finals at the French Open where he lost in four sets to the defending champion Jim Courier. He stood among the world's top ten tennis players all through the nineties.

Wimbledon 1996: Krajicek shocked the tennis world by defeating Sampras in straight sets, becoming the only player to beat Sampras in a Wimbledon singles match in the eight-year period from 1993-2000. He then beat Australia's Jason Stoltenberg in the semi-finals, and went on to face American MaliVai Washington in the final. He won the final in straight sets to become the first Dutchman to win Wimbledon. Two years later Krajicek was in the Wimbledon semi-finals again, where he lost to Goran IvaniĊĦevi. His final attempt at winning a second Wimbledon title was in 2002, when he lost in the quarter-finals to Xavier Malisse. Krajicek had to retire from the professional tour in 2003. During his career, he won 17 singles titles and 3 doubles titles. His highest world ranking was in 1999 when he was the world's number 4.

Since retiring from the ATP circuit, Krajicek runs The Richard Krajicek Foundation which builds sports facilities for children in Holland's inner-city areas. In 2004 Krajicek became the tournament director of the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam. His first tournament was a success with 105,000 spectators. ABN AMRO bank's Sports Desk ambassador, Richard Krajicek advises the bank how to optimise its service to athletes.

In 2005, he published a book on tennis called 'Fast Balls' (Dutch: 'Harde Ballen'). Krajicek was named Sportsman of the year 1996 and the most popular athlete a year later.

Richard Krajicek gives lectures about ambition and motivation. Ambition is a good thing, but blind ambition needs a pair of glasses. Glasses of reason, patience and intelligence. Know your own limits! He tries to take the audience by the hand into the world of tennis and the emotions attached to it. He speaks about the difference between his life as a professional tennis player and after and about taking risks and the consequences.


  • Motivational

  • Ambition

  • Know you limits!

  • Taking risks!

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