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In his third season at Wake Forest, men's tennis junior Amogh Prabhakar has earned the title of captain with his hard work and dedication to the program. The Bangalore, India native is in the midst of the breakout season where he has posted a team-leading 13-3 record at No. 3 singles. WakeForestSports.com's Maggie Cancelosi sat down with Amogh to talk about tennis, Twitter and plans beyond Wake Forest.
Q: With what little time you had off during Spring Break you guys got to go to your teammate Conner Sherwood's house at the beach to prepare for your ACC opener against North Carolina. How did that go?
A: We had the fantastic opportunity to go to Wilmington, and we thank Conner and his family for that. We had to train and get ready for the ACC season, so it was great weather, and we had some great practices and conditioning. We trained hard and then we'd relax, and I'm really thankful for that.
Q: What are the essentials in your tennis bag?
A: I have three rackets and tons of grip. I'm also pretty much the provider of sunscreen for the entire team, including the coaches. If I don't have sunscreen, no one has it. I also get blisters on my hands easily so I always have medical tape.
Q: I heard that Mardy Fish and Andy Roddick attended your high school? Have you ever met them?
A: They did go to my high school [Boca Raton Prep]. I was actually able to hit with Andy Roddick at the Wake Forest Open this past August which was pretty cool.
Q: Are you superstitious or do you have any pregame rituals required to help you play your game?
A: I can't say that I have any set rituals like eating the same meal before a big match, getting a haircut or doing any of that stuff, but I do re-grip my racket after every match. I would say that it's more out of habit and necessity. I am a bit superstitious though.
Q. Which ACC team will pose the biggest threat this season?
Well we played two of the top teams in the ACC with Carolina and Duke, and I think we had a lot of positives come out of those matches. Across the board everyone tried really hard and fought. Going off of that, there were a lot of positives and obviously we have a lot of things to work on, so as long as we keep on doing what we're doing and improve on certain things, we're set up well for the rest of the ACC season. Obviously Virginia is going to be tough, especially we'll be playing them at their courts.
Q: How old were you when you first picked up a racket?
A: I think when I was either seven or eight, but I didn't start seriously playing until I was eleven.
Q: If you could call the shots, would you change the singles rankings or doubles pairings of the team?
A: I wouldn't. It's a tough job, but I think our coaches work so hard to create the best possible doubles pairings and singles slots against our competition.
Q: What's up with the team's Twitter craze? What are your reasons for using it?
[Chuckles to himself] My Twitter name is @therealamogh which I came up with on my own. I just thought it was funny how a lot of athletes have accounts as "the real" and then their name [like @RealLamarOdom and @THEREALSHAQ], and obviously I'm the only Amogh out there. I'm not big on Facebook status updates, so I mostly use Twitter to post random things on my mind
Q: How has working towards your finance degree in the Calloway School affected your experience thus far at Wake?
A: Well Calloway has helped shape my focus. I started getting focused on what I wanted to do in my second semester of sophomore year. Once you get into the school and you're talking to your friends, they're competing for these jobs and you want the same thing, so you get more focused on that. Tennis has been a great leverage for networking or just as something to talk about with people because they're always interested. Tennis has taught me so much, and I'm thankful for the opportunity to study at Calloway and play tennis at Wake.
Q: If you could play doubles with a professional tennis player, who would you pick?
A: I would have to say John McEnroe. He's crazy and fun and just a great player.