Thursday, October 21, 2021

Player Profile: Raj Anne - Tennis is a sport where we need to be mentally strong

We caught up with Raj from TennisTampaBay.com and here's his story.

Which league are you a member of? 

TampaBayTennis 

 How long have you participated in your league?

From June 2021

How did you first learn about it?

Got to know about this league from a friend (Sandeep Kolluri)

How often do you play?

2-3 times a week

What do you like most about the league?

Flexibility in scheduling, court selections, incentives, meet and learn from new players

Tell us about your most memorable match(es) –

Match played with Greg H in Sep 2021, it went ~3 hours, have enjoyed it fully. We know each other's game so well that our rallies and games are long. We became good friends and discussed a lot of other things.

During recent doubles finals in a different league, we were 0-4 but came back strongly to make it 6-4 and set two with 6-1 [won 11 games in a row] – This was possible only by being mentally strong and never give up attitude

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?

None so far, yet to find one

Do you have any other interesting comments about your experiences with the league?

I Love the way it is organized, like the various kinds of incentives, Friendly admin, Flexible and Competitive - it's all in one Package.

Love the mobile app – it's super friendly ! The web site is also very easy to navigate and has all details like courts, player profiles, complete stats, rules, pics and a lot.

How did you get started playing tennis?

Informal games with colleagues/Friends

Do you play to compete, or for fun?

Started with fun but now liking competing

What level player are you? (NTRP rating)

I think 3 or 3.25

What do you love about tennis?  

It feels like I miss a lot if I don’t play tennis at least twice in a week, I get a sense of satisfaction.

Meeting interesting people in different professions from many different places and making new friends, learning from their experience and discussing various other topics.

Tennis is a sport where we need to be mentally strong, we can run for 2-3 hours all over the court but if we are not mentally strong and if no proper strategies, we will end up on the other side of the fence. During recent doubles finals in a different league, we were 0-4 but came back strongly to make it 6-4 and set two with 6-1 [won 11 games in a row] – This was possible only by being mentally strong and never give up attitude

Who are your favorite pro players? Why?

Rafael Nadal, like his game, attitude and consistency

Tell us a little bit about yourself, for example: What do you do? Where did you grow up? What are your hobbies (besides tennis)? (Feel free to share any interesting details about your life.)

I am an IT program manager by profession. I grew up in a small town in India and never played tennis during my childhood/school/college days – started a few years back for fun and slowly developed love towards tennis and it feels like I miss a lot if I don’t play tennis at least twice in a week.

My other hobbies/activities: running (I have done 4 half marathons so far), I also play Volleyball and Pickleball but Tennis is my favorite sport.

Love spending time with family and friends

 

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Player Profile: James Pudner - How you play 106 matches and counting in a year and a half.

We checked in with James Pudner out of the Jacksonville league.  He's already played 106 matches in 16 months. That's amazing.

Which league are you a member of?

JacksonvilleTennis League

 

How long have you participated in your league? ​

June 2020.

How did you first learn about it? ​

Google

 

How often do you play?  ​

When I'm not fighting some little joint tweak, I try 3x per week. 

 

What do you like most about the league? 

The flexibility. When I have a slow week I can play 5 times, if I'm out of town I cannot play for 2 weeks. 

 

Tell us about your most memorable match(es) 

Two matches stand out, against Ingan and Ziki. Both matches went 6-7 / 7-6 and very competitive 3rd set tiebreaker. Against Ziki no one broke serve until the last 2 games of the 2nd set. Extremely competitive and high quality tennis (for my level). 

 

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?  

I really have enjoyed everyone I play, but I really like people who can push me and force me to be aggressive. Ingan and Ziki both come to mind, but there are many more. 

 

Do you have any other interesting comments about your experiences with the league? 

When I finished college I thought my competitive sporting days were over. I was ecstatic when I learned about the local adult soccer and basketball leagues, but nothing has compared to the tennis league. I just love the flexibility, frequency of play, the people and the exercise.

 

How did you get started playing tennis? 

When I was in middle school I started playing on the neighborhood team. I played through HS and then stopped for 15 years until COVID cancelled all my other sports. From my first match I instantly fell back in love with the sport and its now the primary one I play.

 

Do you play to compete, or for fun? 

Both. I'm internally a competitive person so I try very hard to improve and win, but ultimately I'm out here for fun and exercise. You won't catch me arguing any calls I disagree with or using gamesmanship. I want people to enjoy playing me as much as I enjoy playing them.

 

What level player are you? (NTRP rating) 

I'd call myself a "weak 4.0"

 


Who are your favorite pro players? Why?

Musetti, Federer, Thiem and Dimitrov. I love all anyone (except Tsitsipas) with a good one-handed backhand. 

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I grew up all over, but went to Auburn University and have lived in Florida working as a CPA since finishing my Masters. I enjoy all sports but am best at soccer and tennis. I have 3 awesome kids (2, 4 and 6) and an even better wife who lets me abandon her to play sports several nights each week.

 

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Player Profile: Arul Josely - He's improved from 3.0 to 4.5 with the help of TennisDC match play.

We caught up with Arul Josely who has been playing with TennisDC since 2012.   He's amazingly talented with the racquet and has won a couple of championships over the years.   Here's his story.


Which league are you a member of?

TennisDC.com

 

How long have you participated in your league?

9 years, since March 2012

 

How did you first learn about it?

Google search

 

How often do you play?

Once a week, these days. 

 

What do you like most about the league?

Friendly, Flexible and Competitive

 

Tell us about your most memorable match(es)

A Playoff Match Against Keith Mcmicheals in 2013. The loss of the first set at 1 inspired me to play great tennis to take the second set at love. However Keith was a fighter and we had a very close third set. The momentum swinging both ways. I was playing at my best, the only time I had a back spinning volley come back into my court. Yet Keith held firm at the end and won the match deservingly. 

 

Most matches against Vipul Chawla are memorable. Being buddies, we know each other's game so well that our rallies and games are long. Irrespective of form and fitness, we always have a good match. This year, all of our matches have been a 3 setter. 

 

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?

My recent favorite rivals are Taylor Lewis, Vipul Chawla, Virak Nuygon and Chris Purdy.

 

Our matches are always competitive with great rallies irrespective of the scoreline. These competitors also bring out the best in me. 

 

Do you have any other interesting comments about your experiences with the league?

This league provides flexibility, competitiveness and fun, a perfect all in one package

 

How did you get started playing tennis?

Played as a 10 year old and occasionally in my early 20’s. Tennis DC is the platform that enabled me to actively play tennis in my life. I started off as a 3.0 and improved to 4.5. The variety of talents in the league helped me to become a better tennis player. 

 

Do you play to compete, or for fun?

Both 

 

What level player are you? (NTRP rating)

4.5

 

What do you love about tennis?  

The love for tennis was inspired by watching Wimbledon as a kid. It’s a personal experience that I share with my father, we used to watch Wimbledon on the weekends. Still vividly remember Martina Navratilova’s tough loss against Conchita Martinez. Also the challenge of figuring out the best combination against your opponent is a reward on its own. Additionally this is the only workout I love. One of my friends used to say that the way to kidnap me is to just invite me for watch or play a tennis match and I would willingly go anywhere.

 

Who are your favorite pro players? Why?

Rafael Nadal. Only player to consistently win against Roger at his peak. 2008 Wimbledon Finals and 2009 Australian Open Semi-finals were some of his best matches. It’s amazing to watch him turn defense to offense. He made tennis competitive during Rogers' great run in the late 2000s.  

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself:  

I am a software test engineer by profession. My job gave me the opportunity to travel the world and to end up in DC. Grew up in a small town in the outskirts of Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. I also enjoy playing ping pong, cricket and reading some books (mostly listening in audible). Also trying out my first garden this summer. 

 

Monday, April 5, 2021

Player Profile: Matt Schneiderman - I am playing tennis because it's fun

We checked in with Matt Schneiderman and here's his story.   Matt's Profile:  https://www.tennissf.com/85949/profile

Which league are you a member of?

TennisSF.com

How long have you participated in your league?

4 years, since October 2016

How did you first learn about it?

Google search

How often do you play?

Twice a week, ideally

What do you like most about the league?

Competitive matches with genuinely nice players

Tell us about your most memorable match(es)

A recent 3-set match that kept going and going... We had a 1-hour court reservation and thought we'd have to stop after the first set -- but no one showed after the first hour, so we played on. Split the first two sets (one in a tie-break) and expected to get kicked off the court -- but again, no one showed to take the court, so we played on. The third set went long, too, so we wound up playing a full three hours before we finished. Exhausting but so much fun. 

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?

Marty Pye. Super nice guy, good matches, and he plays net so effectively — and I suck against good net players. It's a good challenge to play against a style that I struggle with. He's also been OK about my minor temper tantrums. 

Do you have any other interesting comments about your experiences with the league?

I lost 40 matches before my first win. I hadn’t played much before moving to SF and joining the league — playing in NYC seemed too complicated. I didn’t really know how to play, but my opponents didn’t seem to mind crushing me. Still, I kept playing and took some lessons to improve, and after several seasons the matches became closer. I try to keep my beginner’s mind mentality even as I start winning more often, and remind myself that the fun is in learning. 

How did you get started playing tennis?

Played in middle school, and then not again until I moved to SF in 2016 when I joined the league.

Do you play to compete, or for fun?

Both 

What level player are you? (NTRP rating)

3.0

What do you love about tennis?  

I love learning — how to improve physically and mentally and how to deal with challenges. I've learned the most from the matches that were the most challenging — sets or even games I've lost that I felt that I shouldn't have, which frustrated me to the point where I threw my racquet down in disgust. Feeling frustration and recognizing it for what it is, then reminding myself I am playing tennis because it's fun.

Tell us a little bit about yourself, for example: What do you do? Where did you grow up? What are your hobbies (besides tennis)? (Feel free to share any interesting details about your life.)

I’m a 45-year-old single father to a 4-year-old. Besides tennis I enjoy puzzles, board games, and running — mostly after my kid.