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Athlete of the Week Q&A: Lev Kazakov

Each week, BRSN sits down for a Q & A session with the Athlete of the Week. This week, we caught up with freshman tennis player Lev Kazakov following his stellar performance against the University of Pennsylvania last weekend.

BRSN: Lev, thanks for taking the time to speak with us.  You had a great performance against Penn last weekend.  Can you walk us through your mindset before, during, and after the match?

LK: My mindset before and during the match should not differ at all. Therefore, I will combine these two. It was the first outdoor match for us in the season, and we didn’t have a chance to adjust to outdoors. But our coach said just go there on a court, dictate the game, impose your will on them, and make most out of every point. I did that, and we got a win. After the match the whole team was a bit upset with the absolute unfair decision towards our captain Colin Sinclair. In the match record, it is written down as a retirement from him, but that is not what happened. They stopped the match due to Pietro Rimondini clinching, and it is definitely not because Colin could not finish the match. Opponent from UP enn said that Colin retired due to the injury, which was very sneaky and unfair in my opinion, because Colin did not have any injuries. But anyway, overall a win is a win.

BRSN: How did you first get involved with tennis?

LK: My dad brought me to the tennis courts when I was 6, since that I have not stopped playing. That is how I got involved in tennis for a first time. 

BRSN: Why did you choose Cornell?

LK: I think Cornell has a great academic level and very solid tennis program. The combination of these two made me choose Cornell. In addition, I truly believe that our tennis program is one of the best programs in the country at the moment. The last thing to be mentioned, the head coach of our program is the most dedicated and hard-working coach in the country. I am very confident in that last statement because I talked to more than 30+ universities in the country. 

BRSN: What’s your favorite pre-game meal?  

LK: My favorite pre-game meal is Chicken Parmesan. I think there was not a single match this season without that meal. 

BRSN: If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?

LK: I would love to go to Corsica.  I hope I will have a chance to go thee during the summer. 

BRSN: What is one thing that most people don’t know about you?

LK: I understand Croatian without having learned the language. 

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