Just got word from my son that he is heading away this weekend for his first college tennis tournament.
He had a rough beginning with a broken finger of his dominant hand but has managed to come back stronger than ever. Not being on athletic scholarship he has had to battle his way into a playing position on the team. The coach set up a tournament for the players to see who could earn the sixth spot on the team. As always Alex had his eye on the prize and was not going to be stopped until he earned a position on the team.
His first match was set up against a player he wasn’t expected to beat. Alex came out swinging and was up on the young man 5-0 before he knew what was happening. He finished the challenge with a 6-2 win. This was the win he needed to get the attention of the coach and his fellow team mates. He went on to beat three of the scholarship players.
His friendship with the number one player has also served him well. The friendship has taken itself onto the court and the number one player has requested Alex to be his doubles partner. In the challenge matches they took on the number one doubles team and beat them. The coach is not on board with the pairing yet but Alex remains confident that he can prove himself worthy by the end of the year.
So this evening I received the text message telling me that the coach told him today to pack his bags, he’s playing in the tournament this weekend. Only six are going and he is one of the six. His hard work has paid off and he has earned either the fourth or fifth position singles and is playing three doubles.
I offered drive down to watch his first college tennis match, but I was turned down. He said he was going to be too nervous already and didn’t want anyone else there. As much as I would like to believe that my presence could be a calming factor I understand that parental presence usually adds to the pressure.
Just as well anyway since I would be an absolute nervous wreck anyway.
Well this is it, the payoff to all the years of hard work, the dream coming to fruition.
Congratulations son, you deserve this opportunity. No matter how it goes this weekend remember that we will be proud of you. If I was there you know what I would say, it is the same thing I have said for the past seven years…
“No matter what happens, win or lose, you are still the same person you where before you walked on the court. If you play with passion, remain a gentleman on the court and do your best under the conditions at that moment, you cannot ask for more.”
Good luck and know that your number one cheerleader will be saying a prayer and cheering you on from here, as always…I’m soooooo proud of you.