***Jesse Levine is a 23 year old from Ottawa who moved at the age of 13 to Florida due to his brother’s health. As a junior he won the US Under 14 championships, as well as the doubles junior title at Wimbledon. He was out for five months with a knee injury when he started his comeback. He had reached 94 ATP ranking in March of 2008 before slipping to 526 in August this past summer. He has just recently won the USTA Wild Card playoff beating Robbie Ginepri in the finals in front of Robbie’s home town crowd 60, 62,61 in under an hour and a half, and received a Wild Card to the Australian Open in January 2012. He is currently ranked 164. He has continued his friendship with his former coach Nathan Gatt who now acts as a consultant and very good friend to Jesse.***
ONcourt: Do you miss Canada?
Jesse Levine: I really miss Ottawa, I grew up there and my mom’s side of the family still lives there. I am a huge Sens fan, so of course, I miss the hockey and family and friends that I have there.
ONcourt: In recent years efforts were made to bring you back to play for Canada?
Jesse Levine: Yes, there was especially after I got to the third round of Wimbledon. I was disappointed it did not work out although I am open to come back as I have not played Davis Cup for the US.
ONcourt: Who is your support team now?
Jesse Levine: Obviously, my parents and brother are a big part of my support team. Nathan Gatt, my coach when I was 13 years old, has always been a big part of my support team, as well as a big brother to me. Also, SGT major Keith Williams, a former US marine, has also played a big role on my support team.
ONcourt: While going through rehabilitation, did you ever think of quitting?
Jesse Levine: I never thought of quitting tennis, but there were for sure doubts in my mind if I would be back to 100 percent.
ONcourt: How do you feel about your performance of the last six months and what are you goals now?
Jesse Levine: I am happy with my performance over the last six months, not satisfied but happy. I am hoping to play all the Slams this year and be back in the top 100 by US Open. I’m still hungry to get back to where I want to be, there’s still plenty of food on the table.