Tennis Tampa Bay
How long have you participated in your league?
This is my second season. I joined TennisTampaBay in November, 2021 for the first time and this actually is my first league ever.
How did you first learn about it?
One of my friends, Raj Anne, introduced me to this league.
How often do you play?
3-4 times a week. If time and body permits, my mind and heart asks for it everyday :-)
What do you like most about the league?
The best part is getting to play with a lot of different styles of players. Some love being aggressive, some would just love to keep building rallies. It really developed me better as a player. Before this, I have never played with these many different styles. And of course the flexibility to meet people and play. I never run out of people to hit with. It has given me many new friends and I would love this community to keep growing further.
Tell us about your most memorable match(es).
I would think of 3 matches which really stood out and stay in my memory. One was last season's semi-final with Tom Foran where I won but I loved playing with Tom since we kind of have a similar style of playing, we both have decent top spins and good serves (Tom has better than me of course, balls were kicking 2-3 ft over my head almost every time).
Second was the one I played with Chritopher Conte (I'm sure he is 4.5 or up) and lost 0-6,0-6 ( In my opinion, he is the only opponent I faced ever where I could not handle the pace of the shots).
Last but not the least was with Alexander Damjanovic, lost 5-7,5-7. Both sets started with 0-2 and I took the lead to 3-2 on both and I was 2 points away to level the first set (at 5-6 down) and 2 points away to win the second (at 5-4) but couldn't convert it. Alexander really has great slices and flat top spin shots with wide angles. I was really happy with the way I competed in this match knowing Alex plays 4.0 and 4.5 level.
I would not say rival but I would love to play with Andrew Epperson again and again, even though he beat me badly in both the matches, I see him as the most consistent player with the best defense. I wish I could get only 50% of his consistency.
Do you have any other interesting comments about your experiences with the league?
Well, when I started playing this league I used to get frustrated initially with few unconventional styles of tennis and would just give away the match in frustration. I slowly learnt to focus on my game rather than the feed and I can proudly say I'm getting better. With only 15 months of tennis in my life, without any professional coaching, I feel I came a long way and thanks to this network of players as well who really shares great feedback after every match.
How did you get started playing tennis?
I was out of work for a few months during 2020 and finally October, 2020 started with one of my friends just to kill some time but never knew that this would become my obsession (in a positive sense).
Do you play to compete, or for fun?
Right now, I am playing to improve and learn. Playing great and losing gives me more pleasure than playing bad and somehow winning.
What level player are you? (NTRP rating)
I just love every aspect of it. The mechanics behind how a contact should be made to mental toughness.
Who are your favorite pro players? Why?
Rafa. He has got the best shots either forehand or backhand. I think the only player with no bend in his arms while contacting the ball gives him the most spin and power.
What do you do? Where did you grow up? What are your hobbies (besides tennis)?
Mechanical Engineer in Application sales. I grew up in one of the Himalayan towns, in north India and came to the USA for a Master's degree and have been here since then. I love working out in the gym 5 days a week if time allows and love hanging out in the mountain sides. Just have one beloved wife :-) and one kid.
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