I think this
week was probably one of the toughest weeks of the season. First, most of us
had midterm exams. Second, we had two very close matches over the weekend. One
of them we won, and the other one we lost.
We started the week out by analyzing our weaknesses. After two defeats in a row last weekend, it was perhaps the only right thing to do, because you get stronger only if you learn from your losses.
the team remembers the first practice of the week. We had to do synchronized
jumping jacks as a team. Unfortunately, we ran out of time and didn't finish
this exercise as many of us simply lost attention. This showed us that the
reason we're losing very close matches is simply because of a lack of focus.
Over the weekend, we had two games. The one on Saturday against Penn was really inspiring for me, and I hope the whole team feels the same way as I do, as this match is one of my best memories from the first half of the season. As I recall from one of our losses several weeks ago, we were told, "You don't look like a team. If you were a team, you would feel it". It was on Saturday that I truly felt it.
On Sunday we
lost. Though every single loss brings disappointment, it also gives motivation.
We were close, and it means that we have to work harder from the very first
practice. Surely all of us should bring more excitement and interest to every
single drill, because if you are really motivated and enjoy doing even the
toughest drills, there will not be a team strong enough to beat you... We
must do it, Terps!
Coming to Maryland has brought a lot of new in my life, but surprisingly, the most considerable changes for me were not the new climate, language or the different style of life, but understanding that I am now a part of a team.
This has a great amount of advantages since tennis is usually an individual sport, and now I feel support and help from the team. It also requires a lot from me because I must respond by giving best attitude towards what I am doing and help and support the people with whom I have got to work, travel and hopefully make progress. Even though I have been playing college tennis for just two months I feel that this experience has already made me learn something very important. Now I am far more concentrated on the court than I used to be even 2-3 months ago, because now I represent not just myself, but also my university and my team.
Second, I have started working harder
during practices than I used to before I came here because having matches every
week makes you finally understand that you have no time to procrastinate
and that every single practice may allow you to become a better player if you
have a great wish to work and a clear goal. Now, I enjoy tennis more.