STARNBERG, July 10, 2017
In March 2015, Frenchman Jules Marie reached a new personal career high ranking at World No. 228. He celebrated his biggest wins like beating Robin Haase in the qualifying of the ATP 250 event in Auckland.
By the end of the same year, however, different media reported that the then 24-year-old was tired of the professional international tennis circuit. Marie was fed up with travelling and did not want to spend more money than he actually earned.
But Marie still wanted to play tennis and started his second career, joining the Circuits Nationaux des Grand Tournois (CNGT), a national competition in France consisting of about 40 tournaments per year.
“It is a really great opportunity to continue playing without all the long travels. We have matches every weekend and there are a lot of great players around like Josseline Ouanna or Maxime Teixeira. By the end of last year’s ranking, I finished first and I am still on top in 2017,” Marie told Tennis TourTalk last weekend. The 11-time ITF Pro Circuit champion was in Starnberg competing in Germany’s Regionalliga team competition with his club Rot-Blau Regensburg.
“Life on the ATP or ITF Tour was not very relaxed. I had to travel every weekend and it was very expensive, too. I also had to ask my father for money, as I spent about €30,000 every year and I did not know if I could make it to the Top 100. There was no guarantee for that. You need to win at least two or three Challengers. It was very tough, also mentally. So I stopped due to financial reasons. I just wanted to earn money,” Marie told and while explaining the system of national prize money tournaments in France, the Caen native made a satisfied impression with his current situation.
He said that he moved to Paris a couple of weeks ago, having the chance to practice at the National Tennis Centre. From time to time, he is also back on the ITF Pro Circuit.
“If you reach a particular ranking position you get some bonus in France. So I wanted to get back to the ATP rankings and I played one Futures tournament in Bagnoles-de-l’Orne, close to my home town. I received a wild card and made it to the semis. Then I went to Toulouse. I qualified but lost in the first round and I was sick of it again.”
Playing some team tennis in Germany seems to be a refreshing change for the World No. 1075. “A friend of mine is a coach here. He retired as an active player and set up the contact with the team. It is my second year now and so far I have won all of my matches. It is a really nice opportunity and the guys are very cool. I enjoy it a lot.”
Marie has not made any plans for his life after his tennis career. “I could imagine myself being a coach for young talents at Roland Garros but I am not asking that question at the moment. I still want to play as long as possible.”