Brad Smith is an agent with the CIA.
He is also a former tennis pro. Ranked near the top and in demand at all tournaments, Smith could pick and choose and go where he pleased. At his prime, he had won Wimbledon and was a darling of the tennis circuit. Now at age 40, he has long since quit the circuit. Having made a considerable amount from his winnings, Smith is not in need of money.
Smith might have been an operative but he was never given an actual cloak or dagger. Instead he was approached near the start of his career and asked to do a small job here or there. His travels to tournaments or exhibition games or interviews made for a great cover for his extracurricular activities. Who looks for a covert agent in someone doing something as overt as a press conference? His work was simpler and less dangerous
Just as he had quit playing professionally nearly a decade before, Smith had done his last job for the Agency nearly five years before the start of this series. He had retired. Now he occupied his time and stayed in the sport that he still loved by writing about it as a freelance journalist. He remains in terrific physical shape by playing in the occasional charity event, making him in better shape than most men his age but he knows his endurance is not what it once was. The days of risking limb in a match or his life on a case should be long over.
Then his old handler, Collie Davis, came calling for just one more job. A simple one, to Davis, and one tailor-made for Smith. Just one more. And then another. And so on.