Seattle Tennis - A Palm Springs Heaven!

What's with all the beautiful weather in Seattle? In case you didn't know, Seattle has had amazing, sunny weather the past week or two. But what most people don't know is that this is pretty common for this time of year. So, no, it's not always raining here!

What else? Well, this weekend, the USTA League Tennis got underway in the Northwest, and my team had our first match! Roger Mark (Avanti Sports) recommended me for the 4.5 Dao Team, led by the very capable and clever doubles player Duong Dao. This was my first time playing USTA League Tennis, so I was very excited!

I started practicing with Dao's team back in December. And as my singles challenge record indicates (1-4), I didn't have the "warmest of welcomes" by the guys.

But if you know me, you know I'm a fighter. So I pulled out The Inner Game of Tennis (read earlier blog) and Winning Ugly (Brad Gilbert) in order to mentally prepare myself to produce a better challenge record against my new teammates. I was going to be on the starting lineup for our upcoming match (come hell or high water)! In addition, I worked out in the gym and on the court regularly to up my fitness level.

Six pounds lighter, faster, stronger and armed with the advice of Gilbert and Gallwey, I racket up impressive numbers at practice, winning several key challenge matches.

Which brings us to this weekend. A very intriguing first match was booked. We were set to play the Ball Busters, a team I had contemplated playing for in November before finally deciding on the Dao Team. Unfortunately, the captain of the Ball Busters felt they had their singles line-up pretty much settled. Seeing as how I suck at Doubles, I had no other option but to join a team in which I could compete rather than warm the bench. And so, with some persuasion, I was chosen to start as #2 Singles, against the team that wouldn't have me! The prospect of revenge can be quite salivating, indeed!

Actually, it was much more stressful than you can imagine. In fact, I became so nervous during the warm-up that I could not get a long rally going. My hands were sweating and my feet were dead. I had the jitters. I wanted to win eagerly for the obvious reasons of proving a point and giving my team a lead. With the match underway, I settled into my pre-match summary (as instructed by Gilbert in "Winning Ugly"). My nerves never really did settle. Nonetheless, I won my match 6-2, 6-2. Our team had the early lead at 1-0.

Unfortunately, things overall didn't work out as I had hoped. My team lost the match 3-2. A bittersweet victory for me. But definitely, much sweeter than bitter.

Posted by bigE


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