After ending the tournament early, why not take advantage of the local, historic sights?

Sam Groth and Nicole Gibbs are giving fans a behind-the-scenes look at the world of professional tennis all year long in My Tennis Life. To read more updates from Sam and Nicole, go to

Hi everyone,

My last week in Rome wasn't great on court. I lost in the first round in singles [at the $64,000 ATP Challenger] and, unfortunately, my partner Rob Lindstedt had to pull out of doubles on the morning of our match so it was a quick tennis week.

Off court I had a great week. My girlfriend, Britt, flew in and I booked us into a hotel in the centre of Rome. It was both of our first times in Rome and I wanted to take the chance to experience the city.

We made like tourists and took in as much as possible. We started at the Colosseum and then walked our way through the streets, through local markets and eventually to the Pantheon, onto the Trevi Fountain. We then took a taxi across town to the Vatican.

Rome was an amazing city and it definitely made me feel so much better, and mentally refreshed after a really tough three weeks, to spend some time away from the courts with Britt.

Last Thursday, we flew to Germany where I met up with my coach Billy Heiser. It had been two weeks since I saw him and it was good to get back on court and get back into working on a few things we put in place when I was last with him.

I'm playing qualies at the moment in Heilbronn where I've gotten through my first two matches and am slowly building some confidence in my game.

It's the last week before the French Open so, hopefully, things can keep progressing and I'll slowly keep finding my feet.

Groth won his third-round qualifying match at the $64,000 ATP Challenger in Heilbronn, but fell in the first round of the main draw to the No. 7 seed.