NEW DELHI (Reuters) - The sorry state of American men’s tennis will continue for some time with no real talent on the horizon, said Pete Sampras who dominated the game in the 1990s with fellow American Andre Agassi.
No American has won a men’s grand slam singles title since Andy Roddick triumphed at the 2003 U.S. Open and only five of them feature in the top 100 with John Isner highest at 19th.
“Unfortunately it looks on the slim side,” Sampras told reporters in New Delhi on Monday.
“I don’t see anyone, I don’t really know anyone that even people are talking about to break through even into the top 10.
“We’re not into the 90s anymore. It will be quite a while to see American tennis back to where it was,” said the 14-times major winner who is in India to take part in the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL).
“I think the game has got so international, so global that a lot of kids are playing tennis all around the world. So it makes it tougher for the Americans.
“Maybe the world is more hungry and for whatever reasons, we are not producing juniors, young pros with potential. It’s just a phase and hopefully doesn’t last that long.”
Two of his former rivals, Boris Becker and Stefan Edberg, coach Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer respectively but Sampras said coaching, or Davis Cup captaincy, did not interest him.
“Boris and Stefan, they are a little bit older, have kids a little bit older, they are open to travel. I am not into traveling at the moment, at least more than a couple of weeks a year,” he said.
“The captaincy is not something I am really interested in either.
“I am not ruling out captaincy or coaching in the future but for the time being, for the next couple of years I’m happy just playing some exhibition every now and again and staying home,” added the 43-year-old.
Editing by Alan Baldwin