Teodor Davidov: "People who have never seen me play in real life often criticize my style of play"

4 min. reading
Published on 13/02/2024

Teodor Davidov, 13, is causing a sensation in the world of junior tennis with a very particular style of play, which consists of using two forehands while swapping his racket in and out of his hand.

Teo was born in Sofia, Bulgaria, but his family moved to Denver, Colorado, when he was just a year and a half old. Having grown up in Colorado, as he approached his 11th birthday, he and his family moved to Bradenton, Florida. By this time, Teo had already been playing tennis for many years: "I discovered tennis when I was a baby. My father - who is now his coach - hung a tennis ball on a string and gave me a little racquet. We started playing on a tennis court when I was two and a half."

"My father noticed that my left-handed forehand wasn't so bad".

Teodor Davidov's unique two-strike forehand playing style began to develop when he was 8 years old after an idea from his father. Teodor explains: "It was my father's idea. My father first wanted to improve my coordination but noticed that my left-handed forehand - he's right-handed - wasn't so bad. So, we started training him more and more." Nonetheless, his unconventional playing style is not always appreciated: "People who have never seen me play in real life often criticize my playing style. However, everyone who watches me play tells me to keep doing what I'm doing." According to him, the right moment to change hands with his racket, or not, is just before his opponent's shot, when he knows where the latter is going to hit.

Outside tennis, Teodor has many passions, including skiing, fishing, surfing and wakeboarding. "On a typical day, I get up at 6am. After breakfast, I have my first tennis training session from 7am to 9.30am. Then I go to the gym from 9:30 to 10:30. In the afternoon, I'm home-schooled from 12 p.m. to 2.45 p.m., before my second tennis training session from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., including running and athletic training." Three times a week, Teo also practices Olympic weightlifting.

"I want to be the best player of all time".

In January 2024, Teodor Davidov won the 42nd edition of the Petits As de Tarbes in doubles. In the short term, Teodor Davidov is focusing on his physical and mental development, aiming to become stronger and more explosive. In the long term, he aims to reach the ITF top 50 in order to compete in junior Grand Slam tournaments before turning professional and, ultimately, competing in Grand Slam tournaments.

Teodor aspires to become a renowned professional tennis player but insists that he doesn't just want to be another professional: "I don't just want to be a professional player, I want to be the best tennis player of all time." He is confident that he can reach the highest level with his two forehands, although he also continues to train to perfect his backhand, just in case...

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