New Year

Back in 2005, two of the most promising 18-year-olds in the world had to face each other in the first round of the US Open main draw. The names are now familiar to everyone, but back then they started with very few people on the stands of the side court that they were playing on because to our American fans, they were simply unknown. Mr. Djokovic and Mr. Monfils had an unbelievable five set battle that had all sorts of ups and downs from both players and multiple medical timeouts due to the physicality of the match (most 18-year-olds have not gotten much experience on that kind of length). We don’t need to say much about his incredible commitment to the game in every single aspect of it, and what Djokovic has done with his game over the past eighteen years as he clearly continues breaking almost every record that there is. On the other side of that coin is Mr. Monfils who is known to be one of the nicest guys on tour, a guy now with a nice young family, a guy who has enjoyed his life, and an entertainer to many young and old fans for years and years.

Unfortunately, Gael Monfils has also been known for a bit of lack of seriousness (never laziness) in his approach to taking care of details in regard to his game and all of its many parts. I am sure that he does not have any “regrets” regarding what his life has been, the privileges that he has had, and the large amount of people who he has been able to impact positively, but I wonder if the lack of Grand Slam trophies in his house ever make him think about what could have happened if he had just worked a little bit harder across the board. Since the differences of levels are so incredibly small at the highest levels of the game, I wonder if a five percent consistent increase of attention to detail over his long career would have given one of the best athletes that the game has had (Mr. Monfils) a few or even just one Grand Slam championship.

As we start this new year, many of us approach the beginning of it with some “resolutions” about positive things to implement to make a difference in our lives. My most important resolution is going to be to simply raise our program standard by a small margin. I know how hard and deliberate is all the work that all of our players, parents and coaches put each week to continue aiming high with the game, but I know that an incremental improvement is possible, and I am definitely positively charged about it. I hope that everyone embraces the new year as an opportunity to reset and restart the process. I know that our entire team is very proud of the steps that we have taken this year, the progress of our players, the atmosphere on the courts every day, but I KNOW that we are not satisfied, and we want to do more!!!! Our standards are officially higher, so be ready!!

See you on the courts, and a Happy New Year to everyone!!!!