Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Darin Stojanovic - Has found the love of playing competitive tennis

We caught up with Darin Stojanovic out of the TennisPhilly.com franchise.  

Darin has played an amazing 54 matches in under a 1 year period of time. He started his journey during his early 40’s in the summer of 2022.

What do you love about tennis?

Tennis gives me the right balance in the amount of cardio while enjoying the sport.  I set goals and tennis keeps me mentally challenged.   The fun part is wearing the bright neon shirts.

How long have you participated in your league?

This is my first year that I started playing competitively in the leagues.

How did you first learn about it?

I started taking lessons at the Legacy Youth Tennis and Education.  After a few clinics, other players suggested I try Tennis Philly.

How often do you play?

I play three to four times a week. 

What do you like most about the league?

The players in the league tend to have a lot more experience and they always offer tips for other players to improve their game.

Tell us about your most memorable match(es).

My most memorable match is when I play someone with a similar skill level.  I played the longest two sets with my opponent over the summer.   I needed a two-point difference to win the first and second set.  After many deuces, in the second set, I hit a heavy backhand down his right side wide in the court to win the final point.  

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?

I didn’t have that many repeat matches yet.  I will get there eventually.

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

As the daylight slowly goes away in the evening games, we still keep playing for the love of the sport.

How did you get started playing tennis?

My parents started me with weekly tennis lessons after elementary school classes ended.

Do you play to compete, or for fun?

I want to compete and have fun at the same time!

What level player are you? (NTRP rating)

2.5

Who are your favorite pro players? Why?

Nadal and Federer. I enjoy the amazing shots that these two players make.  They also display good character during their matches and that is more important than winning the match.

Tell us a little bit about yourself, for example: What do you do? Where did you grow up? What are your hobbies?

I grew up abroad. Currently I reside in Philadelphia with my wife and two small Chihuahua mixes. I stay active with activities such a biking and taking the wife and dogs on the trail.  Travel for warm beaches is always on my mind such as south Florida.

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Eric Dosal - Future Advanced player?

We caught up with Eric Dosal out of the Tennis-Miami.com community!  Here's his story. 

I grew up in Miami, went to college at Babson College in Boston, then made my way to Wall Street to work in Finance for a few years before coming back home to Miami to join the family business.  It's been 20+ years since I came home and during that time I have been working with my family (mostly my brother) starting, selling & operating different businesses in the technology space.  Currently I spend my professional time running Compuquip Cybersecurity, a cybersecurity consulting practice. 


Which league are you a member of?

I am currently a member of the Tennis Miami Competitive2 (3.25) League but a future member of the Elite & Advanced (4.0) League (wink wink!)

How long have you participated in your league?

This is my 2nd full season as I was recovering from an injury that kept me out of 2 other seasons earlier this year.

How did you first learn about it?

A friend of a friend told me about Tennis Miami when I was looking for regular matches to improve my skills.  I was tired of playing the same people over and over without any structure.

How often do you play?

My goal is to play twice during the week and once on the weekend which ends up being about 2 to 3 times per week depending on scheduling and how my body holds up. 

What do you like most about the league?

I love the structure of the league which allows you to schedule matches based on your availability vs a required day of the week as other leagues have.  And I love the tracking of scores and rankings for the league so you can see how you’re playing compared to others in your league.

Tell us about your most memorable match(es)?

I had one match against someone that played mostly junk balls and frustrated me to the point I wanted to scream and smash racquets.  But I learned more in that match about the mental game and patience than any other time.  Outside of the league, just recently I played a match with my brother while we were in Park City, Utah in December in a “bubble” they put over the outdoor courts since there was 2ft of snow outside.  Playing at high altitude totally changes the game.

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?

I don’t have many rivals but Jesus Gonzalez is who I’ve played with the most and it's always fun to play against him.

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

I feel like it's a big community and I’ve seen some players advance to other leagues and thought “that means I know I can do it too”.  Everyone is extremely friendly and I’ve never had a bad experience on the court.

How did you get started playing tennis?

My mother started me playing tennis when I was very young, however I chose baseball over tennis and played baseball through college.  I didn’t pick up tennis again for another 30+ years in 2021 when I wanted some “fun exercise” outside.  I have been playing regularly ever since.

Do you play to compete, or for fun?

A little of both.  I have a lot of fun on the court and love the calorie burn.  But the competitive nature of the sport feels great, I feel like a kid when I’m out there chasing balls down.

What level player are you? (NTRP rating)

I have never had an official rating but from everything I have read and other tournaments I’ve played I would comfortably say I’m at a 3.5 level.

What do you love about tennis?

I love the fitness aspect, the mental challenge, the opportunity to compete, the fact you can’t think about anything else on the court, and the social aspect. 

Who are your favorite pro players? Why?

I’m a big fan of anyone with a single handed backhand because that’s what I have so guys like Tsitsipas, Dimitrov, Musetti, Theim, Wawrinka, and of course Federer.  Besides that I’m a fan of Taylor Fritz (currently the top American), Nick Kyrios (excitement on the court), Casper Ruud (his playing demeanor), and Jack Sock (doubles skills),

When I’m not playing tennis I love to workout, I love to read, I love to spend time with my family which includes my amazing daughters and my incredible wife (who also plays tennis).

 

Friday, January 6, 2023

Roberto Olivares-Amaya - Really enjoying the community in East Bay


Tell us a little bit about yourself, for example: What do you do? Where did you grow up? What are your hobbies?

I grew up in Mexico City. I spent about 12 years in the Northeast, mainly in the Boston area. In late 2019 I moved to Berkeley, CA, where fortunately there are plenty of public tennis courts. I moved right before the pandemic. That's where the League became a lifeline to get back to playing tennis all-year round. 

When I'm not playing tennis, I'm doing long distance running or doing hikes alongside my wife. Just as I like playing long matches, you can probably see me reading novels or watching movies at the local theaters.


Professionally, I'm a chemist who became a machine learning scientist. So I spend my work hours doing programming working in the biotech industry.

Which league are you a member of?

EastBay Tennis

How long have you participated in your league?

I've been a member since August, 2021

How did you first learn about it?

I looked up leagues online and was lucky to found Tennis East Bay!

How often do you play?

I try to play 3 matches a week

What do you like most about the league?

I really like the sense of community it builds. 

Tell us about your most memorable match(es)

I remember the championship match for the Advanced 1 League over the summer. There's also been memorable matches where it all boils down to a tiebreaker. The League is so competitive that we've all been in good wins and losses where we have to hand it to the other player.

Who are your favorite rivals in the league? Why?

It's hard to call them rivals because we're all so friendly to each other. We have a band of lefties in the league: Diego Roig, Charlie Mintz, Eric Smith, and Ben Kleinman that has made it a lot of fun. Tomás Perez's and Eric Katerman's sage advice has made the EBTL better. Last Matty Moss's play has kept all of us on our toes.

How did you get started playing tennis?

I started playing tennis when I was young in Mexico. I never made past local tournaments, but did have fun in plenty of summer camps.

Do you play to compete, or for fun?

I play to have fun, but the league's competitive spirit keeps me on my toes.

What level player are you? (NTRP rating)

4.25 

What do you love about tennis?  

I love the aspect of self-improvement in tennis. While we play matches, we aim to improve every single one of our shots, and trying to win. All of these aspects come together like a jigsaw puzzle. 

But more to the point, a well-constructed point is a thing of beauty.

Who are your favorite pro players? Why?

Roger Federer, for his style of play. He's also a player that as he aged, he continued improving and changing his game.