At 97, world's oldest tennis player wants to play against Roger Federer
- Leonid Stanislavskyi, 97, is the world's oldest tennis player
- Stanislavskyi was introduced to tennis by his colleague
- He has his eyes set on the 2021 Super-Seniors World Championship
Leonid Stanislavskyi, 97-year-old, from Ukraine is the world's oldest tennis player and has been playing amateur tennis for over half a century. According to a Reuters report, he has been participating in the world and European championships for seniors and at times outplays his younger competitors.
When he was 30 years old, Stanislavskyi was introduced to tennis by his colleague who was a Soviet champion in gymnastics. And since then, he has trained three times a week in his hometown of Kharkiv in eastern Ukraine.
"It is an elegant type of sport. It is good physical exercise. It is a beautiful game. And there is one more thing about tennis – you can play no matter what age you are," he was quoted as saying by Reuters.
Stanislavskyi, a Guinness World Record holder as the world's oldest tennis player, has his eyes set on the 2021 Super-Seniors World Championship that is due to be held in October in Spain's Mallorca.
This is for the first time, the International Tennis Federation introduced a 90 plus age group in the 2021 tournament after he wrote to them, asking the federation to introduce a new category.
"When I was 95 years old, I felt much better than now. It is even hard to walk when you are 97 years old," Stanislavskyi said.
"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,'" he added.
Talking about the secret to his longevity, Stanislavskyi said that it is all due to a mixture of good genes and playing regular sports.
As per a Reuters report, he begins each morning with gymnastics and a series of push-ups, coupled with pull-ups. Apart from playing tennis, he loves to indulge in swimming, skiing and has a parachute jump unticked on his bucket list.
He said that his ultimate goal is to live 100 years and battle the Swiss maestro Roger Federer.