He’s been absent from Serbian and world water polo for two years… Still, he came out the other end of the well-known events even stronger. Nikola Radjen, a man with 180 performances for the national team and dozens of valuable medals, one of those whose name is synonymous to the success of Serbian water polo, endured the toughest period in his life and career and is now ready to be a great champion once again…
How do you feel now that you are playing again, after a long break?
I feel as if I had never stopped playing water polo. The debut game went really well, we secured a place in the EuroCup finals. Excellent performances lead me to become one of the key reinforcements for the water polo club Dinamo from Moscow, where I will be playing from September.
How much did you miss water polo?
Because I was working in the Wind Sport Agency, I stayed close to sports, especially water polo. I stayed in touch with many athletes and clubs, members of the sports marketing agency of which I am the director.
How long will you keep playing and what are your plans once you retire from your sports career?
I plan to keep playing top level water polo for the next five or six years. And after? The Wind Sport’s plan is a long-term project – a water sports camp in Vrnjacka Banja. I’m organizing the first camp this summer already, “Number ONE” camp, that will receive 200 kids. The camp is international, so in addition to children from Serbia, we will have kids from New Zealand, Romania, Greece, Israel and Germany. In this period, I will act as the host to the visiting children, while our clients from the world of water polo and other sports will be on hand to give them an unforgettable experience of socializing with real, true champions. I think it will be unforgettable for every child to master the skills of water sports and to hang out with true champions like Dejan Savic, Filip Filipovic, Dusko and Gojko Pijetlovic, Sava Randjelovic and many others, as well as our colleagues from other sports, Milena Rasic, Branko Lazic, Stefan Bircevic…
What is your favourite place for rest and relaxation in Serbia and why?
I feel most comfortable in Vrnjacka Banja with my family. Vrnjacka Banja offers a huge number of extremely attractive locations and a possibility to enjoy numerous cultural and historic monuments, mountain camping sites, wondrous rivers… all of these are reasons why I decided on Vrnjacka Banja as the location for our camp.
When your team mates or guests from abroad come to visit, where do you take them out for a night on the town?
I take them to our famous traditional restaurants where they can try the real Serbian dishes and enjoy them. As for night life, if Ana is performing somewhere, I take them to see my wife’s performance.
What’s your favourite place for going out in our capital?
Honestly, lately I’ve been preoccupied with obligations relating to the opening of our camp, so any free time I have, I spend with my family.
Where do you like to take the kids when you have a day off?
We try to maximize the use we get out of our free time, to spend each moment together, whether we are walking, riding bicycles, or going to the pool together…
Finally, it’s well known that you have strong ties to Vojvodina and Novi Sad…
I have grandparents in Sombor and I try to visit them every chance I get. I go to Novi Sad here and there, to visit friends and family…
autor: Dejan Kontić