I just learned this past weekend that David Ferrer shares an interesting tidbit with a former Aussie player, Phil Dent. Both, at one point, quit their tennis and job real jobs. Dent left the tour and worked in a sewing machine factory and Ferrer worked construction. Dent, if I remember correctly, said that he found working for a living much harder than playing tennis for a living. Additional scoop on Ferrer that was gleaned watching tennis from the Latin American swing. Ferrer's coach used to lock him in a "cupboard", later another commentator during Buenos Aires said it was a wooden locker they kept balls in for stoarge, when he decided Ferrer wasn't trying. He would lock Ferrer in for a couple of hours until he decided he was ready to "try". Ferrer's fitness early on was suspect. Ferrer really didn't try and always thought he "sucked" at tennis. Ferrer, at his lowest point, was a smoker! The commentator said Ferrer would lose, disappear, and apparently just sat around smoking cigarettes until he felt better. Ferrer, and I've heard this for several years, doesn't think much of his ability at all. He was quoted several years ago as saying he shouldn't take a set of Nadal. As recently as the Acapulco tournament, he said he expected to lose to Verdasco as "he is better than me, he has beaten me more than I've beaten him." From all accounts Ferrer really is a throwback to the Aussie days. He works his ass off now, he's supremely fit, he comes to play and doesn't engage in the histrionics so many of his contemporaries do and he's just a real competitor. From what I heard on TV this weekend as well, Ferrer is well liked and well respected by his peers. It was really unreal how much the two guys on Tennis Channel opened up about Ferrer. I knew I always admired his game and attitude, but it's nice to hear where he came from and that the guy really is humble.