'Days Where It Got Tough': Tiafoe Opens Up About Struggles During Childhood

'Days Where It Got Tough': Tiafoe Opens Up About Struggles During Childhood

by Jordan Reynolds

Frances Tiafoe has offered an illuminating insight into his life as a child when he first began to play tennis.

Tiafoe has endured a tough start to 2024 so far. He has yet to find consistency, with some fleeting good moments followed by performances below his potential.

The 26-year-old's level is extremely difficult to deal with when he is near his best. An example was the American's run at the 2022 US Open. Recently, Tiafoe reflected on his epic semifinal against Carlos Alcaraz at the US Open.

Hopefully, Tiafoe will find his best tennis again soon since he can be so entertaining. However, world No. 21 also has an engaging personality off-court, and he showed this with some very honest comments about his childhood.

In an appearance on Nick Kyrgios' podcast, Tiafoe discussed how he and his brother were sometimes ridiculed for using demo rackets due to the financial struggles that his family faced.

"There’s days where it got tough for me, my brother. We’re going to practice, and we’re wearing hand-me-down stuff or demo rackets, whatever you can play with. People are laughing at us, saying, ‘This guy thinks he can be a pro, or this guy is playing with holes in his shoes."

Tiafoe then provided three people in his life who have been extremely supportive of him and a source of strength throughout his career.

"Yeah, my dad's definitely one. My dad was always saying, ‘It's not about where he starts but where you going.’ That sentence right there changed my life. He’s just so proud of me. He, my long-term girlfriend, and my twin brother."

The former US Open semifinalist also talked about how important family is to him and that it has been instrumental in the success he has enjoyed throughout his career.

"I like a good family base. I think families are so big that you can just lean on them and they’ll tell you the room—stuff you’re not trying to hear but you need to hear. Yeah, I’ll probably say my whole family."

Tiafoe is among the players in the draw at the ATP Houston Open. He will hope to find some form during the clay court season.


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