Milos Raonic believes there has never been a better chance in the era of Roger Federer, Rafa Nadal and Novak Djokovic to end his wait for a Grand Slam title than right now.
The most successful Canadian singles male player in history, Raonic has yet to win one of the four biggest prizes in tennis – with his 2016 Wimbledon final defeat to closest he has come.
Instead he was watched on as the big three – Federer, Djokovic and Nadal – have swept up the major honours, sharing the four Grand Slam titles between them over the last three years.
But despite their dominance of men’s tennis showing no end in sight, Raonic feels confident his time will come sooner rather than later as long as he looks forward to a new chapter in his career.
“As long as those guys have been around, this is the best opportunity there is,” said the 28-year-old Jaguar ambassador. “They don’t give up much of those opportunities, they are very few and far between.
“But it’s not about them giving it up, it’s about you working on your game, you stepping up and taking it because you deserve it as you’ve put in the right attitude, work mentality.
“You also have to get lucky in those situations as well and it’s about you bringing the best from yourself and that being enough. It’s also being in those situations many times over.
“I haven’t had the momentum to put things together. I’m just trying to make the most of a new chapter and hopefully I can give myself the possibility of a long window to play healthy.
“If I can play consistent tennis, put together weeks and months to create some kind of momentum, then I can make the most of it at the big moments on the big stages like
Raonic was ranked as high as third in the world after losing to Andy Murray at the All England Lawn Tennis Club in 2016, but he has since slipped out of the top 20 after being plagued by injury.
His latest setback came at the US Open when a glute problem forced him to withdraw before the tournament – and Raonic admits a window of fitness is all he needs to get back to the top.
“It’s been a tough season to swallow as it’s been sporadic when I’ve been healthy and when I’ve been able to get myself in the right kind of shape I’ve been able to play well,” he said.
“When I have that ability and freedom to focus on my tennis and not on the status of my body I can do good things and I can do things on a tennis court that I’m proud of.
“I’m trying to finish the season strong and healthy, so over this period of time I can create a base that I can use as a platform to take a big boost off in the winter months.
“I want to go into Australia feeling strong and fit, really give myself the chance to express my tennis and challenge myself to show the things I can do, to show I have improved.
“It’s all about succeeding at the Slams and I think I’m a much better player now than when I was back then, I just don’t think I’ve had the freedom of continually working on things.
“If I can play consistent tennis, put together weeks and months to create some kind of momentum, then I can make the most of it at the big moments on the big stages like Wimbledon.
Raonic was speaking at a Jaguar Tennis Masterclass at Wimbledon, where he provided a coaching session to 24 lucky competition winners alongside Tim Henman and Katie Boulter.
And having had fond memories of playing at the All England Lawn Tennis Club at the 2012 Olympics, Raonic is also setting his sights on going for gold once again at Tokyo 2020.
“Tokyo 2020 is huge on my mind, it’s something I look forward to,” said the Jaguar Ambassador. “I wasn’t able to compete in the last one in Rio but I had a great experience in 2012.
“I’m really looking forward to it as it’s one of my favourite cities in the world and I want to make the most of every aspect of it and hopefully have a successful event there.”
The Jaguar I-PACE recently won the treble at 2019 World Car Awards including World Car of the Year, World Car Design of the Year and World Green Car awards. For more information about Jaguar’s partnership with Wimbledon visit https://www.jaguar.co.uk/partnerships/wimbledon.html