© Ella Ling

Ernests Gulbis

Top 10 Ernests Gulbis quotes


Top 10 Ernests Gulbis quotes:

On how he likes playing a tournament in Rotterdam: “I like that the marijuana here is legal. I’m for that. Unfortunately, tennis players cannot do that. We get checked every week. But I like the way of thinking.”

On rumours that he has travelled to tournaments in his father’s private jet (his father is one of the richest men in Latvia): “Yes, and I have a helicopter, a submarine and a spaceship.”

On being named after Ernest Hemingway: “My parents both read books like crazy. My father has a library in his home. He collects books. My mother also. They enjoyed Ernest Hemingway so they thought – why not?”

On spending a night in a police cell in Stockholm a few years ago, after he was arrested on suspicion of soliciting prostitutes during a tournament: “It was great fun. It was very funny. It’s really interesting as they are very strict. I was in jail for one night, about six hours. I slept a bit. Then the prosecutor came and he asked me what happened, and then he said, ‘Sorry, we didn’t know that it was this’. And he let me go after I paid a fine. I paid the minimum fine for violating the law in Sweden. It’s the same fine I would get for, say, smashing up a telephone booth. I paid 300 euros to get out of jail, as I had a match to play in just a few days, and I couldn’t stay there anymore.”

On how he has thought about early retirement: “On one side I don’t like tennis. I don’t like the travelling, I don’t like the attention, all the pressure. But on the other side I’m thinking, ‘What else would I do?’ I’m in my early twenties. Would I go to college, would I stay at home and do nothing, would I think about how to make some money, or would I live on my parents’ money? But no, I’ve decided I would prefer to play tennis.”

On talking to girls: “If you go out and meet girls, and immediately you’re put in jail, that’s not normal. When I meet a girl, I don’t ask her what her profession is, I don’t ask if she’s a hairdresser or something else. I just meet her. And she meets me. She maybe doesn’t ask what I’m doing. Anyway, if she does ask, I usually lie: I say that I do nothing or I’m a musician or something.”

On how he isn’t motivated by money or fame: “Because I come from a wealthy family, it’s more normal for me to have this money as a tennis player. It’s OK if it’s there, it’s OK if it’s not there. It’s not a big issue for me. If you come from a poor family, you want to pull yourseld up, you have a goal to earn money. I don’t have that goal. The fire in me is that I want to prove to myself that I can do it, that I can be at the top. I don’t care about money, I don’t care about fame. I don’t like money and fame. I don’t need them and I’m not living for them.”

On how he felt bad about trashing rackets: “I felt bad after going to the racket factory and seeing all the work they do. The rackets are hand-made, they do everything for the players, they really think about what the players need, and then an idiot like me comes along and breaks it.”

On how he spent the night after reaching his first Masters semi-final: “We flew to Riga, arriving at one in the morning, and we went straight to a nightclub.”

On what he has given up as he tries to make the most of his talent: “Smoking, drinking, staying up late.”