the “inner fire” of Holger Rune, the Danish hope of world tennis

Selfie of Holger Rune, at the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy, on December 8, 2022, in front of the window where his trophy won at Bercy in November 2022 is displayed.

In kindergarten, little Holger spent his time slipping into the shoes of his hero, James Bond. But have we ever seen Agent 007, the epitome of elegance, with a balaclava and rubber boots? So, even to venture into the Danish forest, it was in a tuxedo or without it. “We told him that going for a walk in the woods dressed like that, it was not done, but he did not budge. He didn’t care what people thought, and he still does. He has a little obsessive side. » The anecdote is unearthed by the mother, Aneke Rune, who met at the beginning of December 2022 at the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy, on the heights of Antibes (Alpes-Maritimes), a few days before her son flew to Australia.

At the time of playing the first Grand Slam tournament of the season, where he enters the running on the night of Monday January 16 to Tuesday January 17 against the Serbian Filip Krajinovic (54e worldwide), Holger Rune shows up in Melbourne in the underdog costume. The 19-year-old Dane was elected “revelation of the year 2022” by his peers, reward for a season which saw him tumble from the 103e at the 10e place in the world and win his first three titles on the big circuit: Munich, Stockholm and the Bercy Masters 1000 – the category just below the Grand Slams.

Holger Rune in training at the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy, in Biot (Alpes-Maritimes), on December 8, 2022. From left to right: Aneke Rune, Patrick Mouratoglou, his coach, Lars Christensen, his historic coach, Mike James, data analyst, and Lapo Becherini, physical trainer.

In Paris, at the beginning of November 2022, the crowd fell in love with this electric battery with a still thin voice, but with cheeky talent, passing five Top 10 players in a row, including the holder of the title and six-time winner, Novak Djokovic, in the final.

This rage, reflected in his clenched fist between each winning blow, “I think it’s in my veins, tell the World the young man, placid version, sitting in a living room of the Mouratoglou academy, where he has been training since the age of 13. I’ve always had, deep within me, this determination and confidence since I fell in love with the sport and started competing.”.

Holger Rune during a fitness session on December 8, 2022 at the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy, alongside his physical trainer, Lapo Becherini (left) and his coach, Lars Christensen.

Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune, of his full name, hit his first balls at 6 years old, in the northern suburbs of Copenhagen. His first coach, Lars Christensen, is still by his side – joined since October 2022 by Patrick Mouratoglou. The kid with the blond puff grows up with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer as idols. Finally, first the Spaniard, then the Swiss. At 7, he finished second in a mixed tournament. Inconsolable, he refuses to recover his trophy. “On returning home, Holger tore down all the posters of Nadal in his room [l’Espagnol était n° 2 mondial à l’époque] telling us: “Hang Federer on the wall, from now on I want to be world number 1” », remembers his mother.

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