Hi Everyone! I hope you are enjoying Wimbledon, it has been such an enjoyable year… although I say that every year! It is Men’s semi finals day, and for me the best moment of the tournament so far was seeing Azarenka back to her best. She pushed Serena to play a level of tennis I have not seen before but it makes you feel like there is no ceiling to the level of tennis the number 1 can play. However hard you push her she will figure out the level, find the level, step up and deliver.
That is the top end of the list… scroll down a bit and you will find me. It has been a good but frustrating first half of the year for me. Interrupted by a bruised bone in my right wrist, which meant I only played 1 tournament in 2 months it has been difficult to find my form again. It is not a long amount of time to have an injury for, but I reached full fitness with my wrist 9 months after I started competing in September and 2 months out of 9 is a big chunk of time.
That has been one frustration, another is that really I have only played 3 matches I have been disappointed with and my results have not reflected this. This is for a number of reasons that I don’t really want to go in to on here, but one thing I can say is that the level of tennis is there I am jut not using it effectively enough. Some call it ‘playing the score’. The scoring system in tennis is what makes it so interesting as all points are not equal. Now don’t get me wrong, the effort and competitiveness for each point should remain the same, it is just what you chose to do in that point which is different. Do you step up and go for it or make them play? Do you do what has been working or do you switch it up to be less predictable?
Before my break I had hundreds of matches at a high level under my belt and this meant I just knew how to play the score without having to think about it. Now I find myself having to tell myself through matches and at times I have been unsure of how to treat that particular point. Yes I have had a lot of matches, but not many at a high level where this often can be the difference and you don’t get away with getting it wrong. I feel like this has improved so much over the grass so I will put it in to practice out here in California and try to play more ‘efficiently’. I did this really well when I was playing play offs which was needed to dispatch some good up and coming juniors.
I am competing in two 50Ks in California and then one 25K in Canada so this is a good opportunity for me to get matches at a high level but also some wins at a high level. I will be in qualifying this week in Stockton but hopefully directly in to main draw of the next two events. That works out quite nicely as qualifying for the first event will give me an advantage in the main draw, but there are some good players in qualifying so I will need to play how I have been practicing to do well.
I landed yesterday evening in San Francisco and then drove 2 hours to get to Stockton before collapsing on my bed for a full night of sleep. This morning I am taking it easy. I have been watching the tennis as I write this and when I am done I will head to the gym to shake some of the flight out of my legs, stretch and do some core. After lunch I will head to the club to hit a couple of times. It is important to try and set up practice before you get somewhere, especially if you are getting to the tournament early, as there aren’t many players around. This is where you need Facebook and just ask anyone you think will need be there early. Right, I better get to the gym and finish watching this match on the treadmill!