World’s oldest tennis player! 97-year-old Ukrainian starts training for 2021 Super-Senior World Championship
Apart from tennis, Stanislavskyi loves swimming and skiing and desires to do a parachute jump. He ultimately aspires to be 100 years and challenge Roger Federer.Author : Shagun
Leonid Stanislavskyi was 30 when he was introduced to tennis by a coworker who was a Soviet gymnastics champion at the time. Now, he has been playing amateur tennis for more than half a century. The 97-year-old Ukrainian man holds the Guinness World Record for the world's oldest tennis player.
Finding a worthy opponent in his age group is nearly impossible, but that hasn't stopped him from participating in the world and European senior championships. Despite the fact that he can't move around the court as quickly as he used to, Stanislavskyi outplays younger competitors.
"It's an elegant sport. It is a good physical activity. It is a wonderful game. And there's one more thing about tennis: it can be played at any age," says Leonid Stanislavsky.
Guinness World Record holder, Stanislavskyi has been practicing hard for the 2021 Super-Seniors World Championship scheduled to be held in October in n Mallorca, Spain.
It is for the first time that International Tennis Federation has introduced the 90 plus age group in the 2021 tournament. This could only happen after Stanislavskyi submitted a written request to the federation seeking the addition of the new category.
"I felt far better when I was 95 years old than I do today," Stanislavskyi said. Just three years close to celebrating his 100th birthday, he moves at his own pace trying to return every shot. “Even walking is hard when you are 97,” he added.
He further says, “People under 70 say- 'Thank goodness I lived another year.' People between 70 and 90 say- 'Thank goodness I lived another month.' I count every day and say- Thank God I lived another day.”
The secret to his longevity is a combination of good genes and frequent exercise, says Stanislavskyi. He starts his day with gymnastics and a series of push-ups and pull-ups.
Apart from tennis, Stanislavskyi loves swimming and skiing and desires to do a parachute jump. He ultimately aspires to be 100 years and challenge Roger Federer.