Marc VanDam writes: “Yesterday I got to play in the singles final of the club championship. In the open division there were not that many entries, so on Saturday they played a type of round robin set up, with the winners of the most games meeting in the finals on Sunday.
My opponent was 50 years old and a former Div. 1 college player from California with an impressive record.
He was so dominant on Saturday, that the people that played against him, were not able to get a game off him. Instead of getting nervous about the match, I decided to shift my perspective, and focused on the fact that I had made it to the finals and that playing against a player of this caliber is exciting and fun.
About 200 or so people came to watch the match on center court. Our on court scene, resembled David and Goliath, me 5’7, he 6’4. His strokes were powerful and penetrating, and his serve broke the sound barrier at times 😉
I went down 3-0 in the first set. But I had noticed something about my opponent…he underestimated me. That’s never a good thing. Like a jack rabbit, I chased every ball down and when the opportunities presented themselves, I took advantage and went for my shots.
The crowd was cheering for me mostly so that helped. I was able to get back to 3-3, and then 4-4. His serve was the difference. So I lost the first set 6-4. I had him a bit rattled and it felt good.
But…his experience and his expertise allowed him to kick it up a notch in the second set. Even though every game was close, I found my self down 0-5. OUCH.
I looked at one of my older friends watching, he gave me the thumbs up and said…keep going, it isn’t over. I stepped it up and fought back to 3-5. I had a break point in the last game and I could have been at 4-5 with me serving…but it wasn’t to be. After my breakpoint he blasted to very big first serves to take the match 6-4, 6-3.
I didn’t feel bad about losing at all, but proud that I gave the big man game and even better that a recreational player like me was able to hang with a former college level player.”
Marc – As one “of your older friends watching,” i tell you that you did play a great match against a terrific player! george