Gilles Muller of Luxembourg is still searching for his first Grand Slam title. But every round that he goes through at the 2017 Wimbledon tennis tournament makes it appear as if he may have his best shot to do so this year in London.
Muller, 34, turned professional in 2001 but didn’t win his first ATP World Tour title until January 2017 at the Sydney International tournament. He’s currently ranked as at No. 26 player in the world and has reached as far as the fourth round at the 2015 Australian Open and made the quarterfinal round at the 2008 U.S. Open.
Muller shocked the world when he upset Rafael Nadal of Spain in five sets on July 10 in the fourth round of the tournament and will look to continue on his improbable run in the quarterfinal round.
Without a doubt, he’s the most successful tennis player to come out of Luxembourg. He’s married to Alessia Fauzzi Muller and has two children with her.
Here’s what you need to know about Muller’s family:
1. Muller & His Wife Have Been Married Since 2010
Muller and his wife Alessia got married in July 2010, Wort.lu reported. The couple first met when they were teenagers but didn’t end up dating until 2001. Like her husband, Alessia is also from Luxembourg and travels with her husband at times to see some of the tennis tournaments that he’s competing in.
They now reside in Leudelange in southwestern Luxembourg.
2. The Couple Have 2 Children Together
Muller and his wife have been married eight years now and have two children, who can often be seen around the tennis star as he preps for matches.
They have 6-year-old Lenny and 4-year-old Nils, and Muller was able to spend a lot more time with them when he suffered a serious elbow injury in 2013. While he was recovering from the injury, which almost claimed his career, as The Independent reported, he was able to be at home to spend time with them while also working on his fitness and the non-technique parts of his game.
In January 2017 when he won his first-ever ATP World Tour title, his family traveled to Australia to cheer him on. He’s always been a very family-oriented person. So when we won the title, he broke down into tears as his two boys and wife joined him on the court.
“Wow, what a night, I’ve waited a long time for this,” Muller said in an interview after he was handed the tournament trophy. “I’m sorry. It just means so much to me to win the first time on the ATP in front of my boys and my wife.”
Muller said that it was his wife and two children that “always” have been behind him.
“It’s very tough sometimes to leave them behind at home for a couple of weeks,” Muller told ATPTourWorld.com. “They make a lot of sacrifices and it’s nice to give something back to them.”
3. Muller’s Father Was a Postal Worker & His Mother Is a Housewife
According to his biography on ATPWorldTour.com, Muller’s father Marcel worked as a postal worker and is now retired. His mother Miriam is a housewife.
A feature article by Wort.lu told the story about how he first discovered his love and interest in tennis when he was 5-years old. He wasn’t the only one who noticed his skill level, either, as his parents and coaches saw potential.
Gilles attended high school in Luxembourg until he teenage years. When he was 16, his parents decided to pick up and move to France, where he completed one more year of schooling before shifting his focus to his future tennis career. He joined the Bob Board School of Tennis in Montreuil, located just east of Paris, when he was 17 and saw a steady rise in his junior career.
4. He Has 1 Brother Who Works for a Security Company
Muller has one sibling, who’s named Patrick. A bio posted to the ATP’s website said that his brother works for a security company, though there isn’t much information on where he works or resides currently.
5. In His Home Country, He Has Been Named the Sportsman of the Year
As should be expected, Muller is very popular in the small country of Luxembourg, which has a population of around 569,000 people.
Muller took part in the 2012 and 2016 Summer Olympics, but didn’t medal. After winning his first-ever ATP title, he said that the people back home, many who he considers family, would be thrilled to see him come home with the trophy.
“To be honest, it doesn’t mean that much because I’m the first player from Luxembourg to do a lot of things,” Muller told ATPWorldTour.com. “It’s obviously nice to win the title and bring the trophy back home to Luxembourg. There are a lot of people who are really happy for me and have been waiting for this for a long time.”