Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Coined Path

What happens when you’re ranked No. 188, playing the world No. 1 in the U.S. Open, on a court that has more fans than the one you prefer to play on, in a match you don’t believe you can prevail in?

Well, if you’re Julie Coin, you win. And that is impressive considering the circumstances.

How many times does an athlete actually admit that she wasn't expecting to win? Or answer honestly with a gasp of disbelief? Who has the capacity to even fight from the underground up, especially when starting a competition with a monotonous mindset?

The qualifier from France played each point with focus and energy and found herself with a 6-3 first set win. She lost the second set 4-6, but maintained her forehand, serve, head game and rhythm. Then she blasted a couple of aces in the final set before holding on to triumph, 6-3.

It was a classic case of the best player crumbling and the extreme underdog reaching within, gaining confidence, and staying patient.

The greatest upset in tennis history? I’m not sure about that, but Julie surely coined her newly discovered path -- a humble winner headed to the next round…


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