USTA 35 National Hard Court Championships – First Round
It sure is great to play an event in the Southwest Section again! There are 2 big things that have been great to remember. The first is showing up early is encouraged is highly encouraged and rewarded. I arrived to the tournament site 2 ½ hours before match time, early is always better than late. Several other players arrived shortly after and all of the courts (25) were available for hitting. I had the opportunity to warm up with David and Wolfgang, great people and solid players.
The second is little but a very important distinction, being on site does not mean you have checked in for the tournament. Being familiar with the tournament director we spoke for a while before other players arrived and intermittently before matches started. While Bill knew I was at the facility he did not check me in as ready to play until I checked in 10 minutes before match time. While that might seem like a small detail that doesn’t really matter but it matters a lot. Arriving early for a match is a benefit to stretch and hopefully get on a court to hit some balls to warm up, it doesn’t mean you’re ready to start a tournament match. Getting thrown on court before you’ve completed your warm up routine is a huge disadvantage going into a match.
I had the great opportunity to meet Angela Gibbs today. She specializes in pain management massage and holy smokes does she do an amazing job! I have never felt better after a massage, pain free and ready for the next match! If you are in the Phoenix area I highly recommend scheduling an appointment with her, please take a look at her website.
As for different things you can learn from looking at the draw. My opponent defaulted due to injury. Unfortunately he called 5 minutes after the match was scheduled to start. My Friday match has also been decided by default as well with the opponent needing to pull out for family reasons. While at the tournament I was able to play a practice set with Nick who is taking on the #2 seed tomorrow at noon. It will be fun to see the outcome of the match as I’ll have the opportunity to play the winner.
Thank you very much to Jay, Thom, Keith, Russ, Maddie, & Paul for taking time out of your day to make the long drive to the tournament. I’m sorry there wasn’t a match for you to watch.
Please excuse typos and grammar to post this the same day it was not possible to have the more literate team members proof read before posting. Thank you.