Athlete: Matteo Berrettini
Client: Red Bull
Location: Rome, Italy
“Tennis player by chance”, so his mother Claudia defined Matteo Berrettini. In fact the Italian born into a family of tennis fans, started playing at a club in Rome mainly because he was pushed by his younger brother Jacopo, while previously he practiced judo and swimming.
Since then he has never abandoned this sport.
His debut among professionals took place in August 2013 at Futures Italy F21, while his first ATP Challenger took place in Trentino Alto-Adige, Ortisei, in 2014. The 2015 is the year of the first victory of a match on the professional circuit.
The following year, an injury to his left knee kept him away from the fields for several months, but still did not stop him from ending the year in a crescendo.
In 2017 Matteo’s climb to the top of world tennis continues, with his official debut on the ATP circuit. In fact, in May, thanks to a wild card granted by the organizers, he made his debut on clay at the Internazionali d’Italia in Rome.
The beginning of 2018 brought immediately excellent results, as in the ATP 250 in Doha (Qatar) Berrettini passed the qualifications of an ATP tournament by entering the main draw and winning his first match in the major circuit. Soon after, the debut also came in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament. Indeed at the Australian Open he was fished out as a lucky loser, even though he was defeated in the first round.
The season also sees him debut in the Davis Cup. While at Roland Garros he won his first matches in a Grand Slam, which opened the doors to the world Top 100.
During 2019 he captured two more ATP 250 titles, in Budapest and Stuttgart. But it was his performances at Wimbledon and the US Open that caused the most sensation. In fact on English grass he became the youngest Italian tennis player to reach the round of 16, where he challenged Roger Federer, a youthful idol, on the central court, who defeated him in three sets.
These results allowed him to close the year in the Top 10 of the ATP ranking, thus gaining access to the ATP Finals, and to earn the award of “Most improved player of the year”.
It was the first time I met Matteo, but we immediately got in tune. Probably because of the very similar age but also for the fact that he is a very easy guy, down to earth, head on his shoulders and desire to do.
The shooting day was actually organized to shoot some video contents for a campaign focused on him. My task was to “steal” as much as possible without affecting the work of the filming crew and to slot myself into any dead moments.
I must admit that it was not easy to obtain satisfying action images. Firstly I did not have the athlete at my disposal and moreover a cameraman was always interposed between me and the subject.
While in the morning the light was very strong and created very sharp shadows, in the afternoon the sky clouded over generating much better lighting conditions.
Although the day was very intense, especially on a physical level, Matteo made himself super available. So I took advantage of a few moments of pause to take portraits of him, my favorite below.
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