Australia has a bunch of young tennis talents coming up. But one of the names that stands out is that of James McCabe. The hard hitting 19 year old made the semi-finals (as a qualifier) of his last ATP Challenger events. As a result, he’s 276 on the Live ATP Rankings, and just a few spots away from securing a Grand Slam Qualifying berth.
He joins us from the Rafa Nadal Academy, where he is training for a week, to speak about his experience of playing in India, his goals for the upcoming months, and more –
Q) You played Challengers in Chennai & Bangalore. How was your experience?
JM – I absolutely loved it. It was my first time in India. Honestly, I couldn’t be treated any better. All the experience of getting off the flight, getting into the taxi, going to the hotel – it was one of the best tournaments I’ve played so far, especially Bangalore. Chennai was really good, but Bangalore was 100% my favorite.
Q) Can you talk about your experience with Indian food?
JM – The food was especially nice. I tried many types of Indian food. I loved having the real Naan bread. I also love having Biryani back home in Australia. But having all this in India was next level. I really enjoyed the food. I really enjoyed the people and hospitality.
Q) Thoughts on Digvijay Pratap Singh. You played against him twice in India.
JM – Absolutely amazing player. He has got a great serve. Both my matches against him were really tight. Incidentally, both my best points were against him, so just a funny highlight reel (laughs). We are very good friends. I see him doing big things. Hopefully he can keep believing and moving up.
Q) You are moving up the rankings swiftly. What are your short term and long term goals?
JM – I am staying a week here at the Rafa Nadal Academy to train and recover. Then I am going to Switzerland to play a $100K Challenger in Biel. Then Paris (Lille) $100K Challenger. Then I go to clay. I was defending a lot of points during the Indian Challengers leg – I managed to do that with my performances. The end of season goal is to be Top 100. You never know what can happen if I can keep this going.
Q) Do you like playing on clay? Aussies are generally known to be hard/grass court players?
JM – Last year I was struggling on the clay because of a few sicknesses. But this year the body & mind is really good. I am really looking forward to the clay this year. And then to the grass after that as well. I have never played on it. I think with my serve and forehand, it’s going to be super fun.
Also, I have really enjoyed following the Indian Tennis Daily (ITD) Instagram page over the past few weeks. You guys do a really good job of it.