Dubai: Former professional tennis player Elena Bergomi is willing to offer free financial advice to current players in a bid to give something back to the sport.
The Bulgarian, who won one singles title and three doubles events on the WTA Tour in a 14-year career, is in Dubai this week for talks that could see her advise young stars on how to plan for their life after tennis.
Bergomi — nee Pampoulova — retired in 2011 and has since established herself as a financial management specialist. The 41-year-old, who is married to a Swiss banker, is managing director of Zurich-based company Aquila Wealth Coordinators AG.
“Tennis has given me whatever I have and I think it is time for me to give something back to this sport,” the former world No.62 told Gulf News.
“In recent years, the WTA has done a wonderful job in creating an awareness among the young tennis players who compete so hard to make a career for themselves. While it is okay for these players to focus on their playing careers, it is equally important for them to know what happens to their earnings so that they can secure their futures.
“What is needed is to spread out these awareness programmes around the world so that players realise the importance of having an eye on financial management. There is life after 30 and these youngsters need to secure this.
“Tennis is a sport that teaches one so much for life. It is an individual sport where consistency is the key. I think modern-day players need to work on how to position themselves for the future, and I think I could be of help.”
She is also keen on running similar educational programmes in the UAE and has held talks with Tennis Emirates General Secretary Sarah Baker and board member Khalid Al Ali. “I have a kid of my own and I know what it means to educate them early and nurture that spark,” Bergomi said.