Chico Wildcard Tournament, Day 1

June 17, 2010

Today was my first day back returning to competition, and what a first day it was! I played in the wildcard tournament for the Chico Futures; a draw of just over 32 players, 8-game pro sets all the way through, winner gets the wildcard (free spot) into the main draw of the Futures event.

Good day…won my first three rounds and playing in the semifinals tomorrow morning! My first round I won 8-4, starting solid, getting an early break which eventually turned into two, and found a nice rhythm throughout the course of the match, putting me in the round of 16. My second match was an absolute grind, saving off eight match points and winning 9-8, 10-8 in the tiebreak. After a brief rest I was back on the court again in the quarterfinals, and battling away once again. This one also reached a tiebreak, and after saving two more match points in the tiebreak, I won 9-8, 9-7 in the tiebreak.

Tomorrow morning is the semifinals against a familiar opponent, and I can’t wait. I am feeling fitter than ever, and today was the best I’ve struck the ball since my return to training. It feels really good knowing all the hard work and dedication is paying off. And the exciting thing is this is just the beginning of the journey. Coming into the day I had no expectations as far as how I was going to do. I knew I was in the best shape of my life, playing well, and had simply given myself the best opportunity to succeed today when I stepped out on the court. The rest took care of itself, and now I look forward to seeing what more can happen…

I’m physically exhausted, but I am well fed and will be well rested and ready to go tomorrow. I must give a shout out to my friend Ally and her family in Chico who made me an incredible meal this evening and am allowing me to stay with them during the beginning portion of this tournament. Their incredible hospitality allows me to relax, recharge the batteries, and focus solely on my tennis. Thank you!!

Stay tuned for more results tomorrow. And how ‘bout ‘dem Lakers!!

-Andy

Please allow me to introduce myself…

My name is Andy, and I just recently graduated college after playing four years of tennis at the NCAA Division I college level. Like most recent college grads, I kept facing the same daunting question from people over and over again, “So…what are you going to do with your life now that college is done?” Since I’m not quite ready yet (though I applaud those who are) to start the job search and enter the real world, I decided to choose another path…chase my lifelong dream of becoming a professional tennis player.

Ever since my parents first stuck a racquet in my hand at the age of three, it has been a dream of mine to travel the world and play professional tennis. Since I was little, I was awe-struck watching all the grand slams on TV, dreaming of one day being able to play under the lights in front of thousands of screaming fans at Arthur Ashe Stadium, or step through the legendary clubhouse doors onto the grass at Wimbledon. However, as I got older and learned about the steps required to get there, traveling all over the world with little or no money, scrambling to acquire valuable ATP points in obscure areas across the globe, I realized that the ATP tour isn’t always all the glitz and glamour its hyped up to be. And I also realized that this might be the life for me…

I want to provide an in-depth look into the life and times of a young tennis professional just starting out on the tour. I will be documenting my travels as I begin my quest for my first few ATP points, setting out across the United States in my 10-year-old Jeep with no A/C, and eventually across the globe to places that give me the best opportunity to win as well as keeping the expenses to a minimum.

I realize that many young, up-and-coming players share this same dream that I do of being apart of the world tour, and that many extremely capable and willing players never are able to chase after that dream. I feel extremely fortunate and blessed to have the opportunity to do so, and because of that I want to thank a few people who have helped to make my dream a reality. First and foremost, I want to thank the incredible people at Tennis Warehouse, for without their support none of this would be possible. I want to thank my Cal Poly tennis family, who has been there for me and allowed me to grow into the player and person I am today. I want to thank my coach and mentor Hugh Bream, and friend and trainer Chris Borgard, who have generously given their valuable time and energy into training me over these past months. And last and certainly not least, my parents, who first put a racquet in my hand, have been there everyday supporting me, taking me to practice and tournaments, and now providing incredible support for this journey on which I am about to embark.

I look forward to documenting my travels and sharing them with everyone!

-Andy