It’s not too often that I like to get all serious and touchy-feely on you, but understand that if I have a chance to mix in a post on Ana Ivanovic, I’m going to do it. After all, she is my favorite tennis player. Anywhoo, there’s a great article in the Long Beach Press-Telegram about Ivanovic and fellow Serb Jelena Jankovic who are in So. Cal this week for the East West Bank Classic. In the article, it describes how Ivanovic grew up practicing tennis amidst bombing.
After all, she was only 11 when NATO forces shelled Belgrade after the breakup of Yugoslavia.
Winter workouts were held indoors as a couple of inventive youth coaches drained the water from a little-used Olympic-sized pool, rolled out green carpet, set up a couple of nets and established a pair of tennis courts.
In the summer, practices were held outdoors on clay courts, but often in the early mornings to avoid the worst of the bombing.
Man, you hear about basketball players learning to ball in the ghetto, and track stars learning to run while escaping the police, but I’ve never quite heard of learning to play tennis while evading bombing. That really brings a whole new sense of real life to me. When I used to practice tennis, all I cared about was the Cactus Cooler I was gonna buy from the vending machine when I got done. Man I’m glad I never had to worry about bombings. How’s that for a reality check.
(Image courtesy Ana’s Official Site)Google+