The Tennis Fanatic

Last night after the final point of the Australian Open Phil turned off the tv.  I promptly yelled at him to turn it back on because I wanted to see the awards presentation.  Phil looked at me and said "Who are you and what have you done with Suzanner?"

I've never really been a big sports fan (unless you count watching gymnastics or ice skating during the Olympics, which I'm sure most of you don't).  But somehow in the past two weeks I've become a tennis fanatic.  We went to our first match last year and Phil was excited because going to one of the majors was a lifelong dream come true.  I enjoyed it more for the new experience than anything else.

The Australian Open grounds has a very festive atmosphere.  Besides the stadiums there are several practice courts you can watch players warm up from and two large screens where people can see the matches while hanging out on the grass.  There is a group called The Heard that dresses up in green and gold and cheers for the Aussie players, and booths selling food and merchandise to new tennis enthusiasts like us.

This year we went to the tennis twice, the second round night session and the fourth round day session.  During the day session we got to see Djokovic (who went on to win the cup) and Stepanek play, and that was the match that got me hooked.  They both played with a sense of humour and had the audience laughing throughout the game.  It was very unexpected that the sport could be such a show.  It was also refreshing to see the athleticism - tennis is one of those rare individual sports where the success is based on how each person plays that day.

Now I am starting to learn some of the names and personalities of the game.  We got Maybe a large tennis ball to kick around in the back yard, and I'm looking forward to many more Australian Opens to come.  And who knows, perhaps someday we'll make it to Wimbleton, the US Open, and the French Open too.

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