Nikolay Davydenko reached a career-high ranking of No. 3 in 2006. (Marwan Naamani/AFP/Getty Images)
Nikolay Davydenko, future member of Russian Parliament? He's up for it.
The former No. 3 told R-Sport that he wouldn't mind following countryman Marat Safin's post-retirement route and going into politics when his tennis career ends.
"If they invite me into politics, I'll go into politics," he said after a loss to Roger Federer in Dubai on Wednesday. "I'm not sure, of course, because politics is not exactly straightforward. You need to move in the right direction, where to go, what to do. But if the interest is there, I would go into it."
Davydenko said he'd love to stay in tennis with the Russian Federation, but those opportunities are few and far between in Moscow.
"There it's easier to go into business or into politics," he said. "Because sport, tennis, at the moment is not really progressing. Everyone is firmly rooted to their spot and it's very tough to budge someone from their place. Pretty much impossible, in fact, so it's best not to touch them. I don't think that any of our players want to stay in tennis. It's hard to do something with the federation."
As for his good buddy Safin, who was elected to the Russian Duma in 2011 as a member of Vladimir Putin's United Russia Party, Davydenko said he's on his way up.
"Safin is doing well," he said. "He's advancing, progressing. After tennis, he entered politics in the right way. We meet up pretty often, have a chat, he's doing great. He hasn't lost touch with us, he gets in contact quite a lot, I've been quite surprised."
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