The Influence of my Father Through Tennis

Matthew - Scarsdale, New York
Entered on October 22, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, sports

Over the summer, my father and I were asked to play in a tennis tournament at my country club. At first I hesitated because I thought it would be boring. I knew the competitors would not be up to my level of play but decided to participate because I like doing things with my father. When I was young, my father would feed balls to me while I tried to correct my strokes and improve my game. By the age of twelve, I was able to beat my dad because of the tremendous time he took improving my tennis game. Even when I was older, I would hit with him during the summers. Whenever I had a tournament, he would come watch me play. Even if a tournament conflicted with work, he would always be there for me. So when my dad asked me to play with him, I suddenly realized that the point wasn’t really to play tennis, but to be with him. He made me who I am, and I believe he was extremely influential on my life and tennis game.

Ultimately, playing with my dad was a lot of fun, and we bonded. It was the first time my dad and I were a doubles partner in a tournament. I had seen my dad play tennis as a hobby but realized that he wasn’t messing around during our matches. His attitude was all business. It reminded me of myself when I was playing U.S.T.A. tournaments as if nothing mattered except giving my all. My dad was grunting and running after balls that I didn’t think he could get. During the first match, we were able to push through and work as a team. It made me happy to see the fire of intensity in his eyes and the willingness to fight for every point.

We easily defeated all of our opponents and won the trophy. Usually it takes awhile to become a good doubles team because you have to feel out your partner and figure out his tendencies and weaknesses. I know my Dad’s game by heart because of all of the time he spent on the court with me. We triumphed because of teamwork and the talent that we showed. Now I understand his impact on my life and the time he took being there me.