Pablo Andújar had his best year as a professional tennis player in 2015. He was on the rise in the ATP rankings, placing himself in 32nd position after reaching the final in Barcelona and advancing to the third round of Wimbledon, something epic for him because in his previous appearances he had never been able to win a match in that tournament.
Everything was looking good until he felt a sharp pain in his right elbow. At first he believed that it was temporary and would not affect his performance in later competitions. The pain persisted and his return was delayed.
He stopped in August 2015 to avoid exposing himself to a serious injury and to arrive in shape at Doha 2016, where he competed to realize that his elbow was already battered for a long time. The only solution was surgery. It was operated in March 2016.
It took six months to step on a court again. He delayed a second surgery because he got married but at the beginning of 2017 it was impossible to resist the pain caused by the elbow, which was increasing. Andújar underwent surgery again. Everything achieved in 2015 had vanished in 2017. The ghosts of retirement were beginning to appear in his dreams but he did not want to retire just yet.
Then came an extra push: he became a dad. With the birth of her son, the depression disappeared. His wife backed him for one more surgery in an attempt to eliminate the elbow pain and in 2018, he was reborn as a tennis player.
His first test was in Marrakech 2018. Located in position 355 of the ATP ranking, he was champion of the tournament. Pandemic through Spanish started 2021 in 59th place in the ranking.
With 35 years and the best triumph of his career, Andújar can say that he finally graduated as a tennis player. And at Federer’s school.