Finished the week strong with a win and a $5,000 check, my biggest tennis check so far. Feels good!

Started the day off with my semifinal match starting at 9:30. There was quite some controversy in the semifinal match. The first quarrel came at 5-5 in the first set. My opponent was serving 40-love that game. I quickly brought it back to 40-30 with two great rallies. At 40-30 I called his second serve out which he seemed to disagree. My opponent was on a short fuse after that point, kicking the ball, yelling at me. I took the deuce point to make it my advantage. The point to break serve was a pretty long rally with me ending it hitting a forehand that my opponent called out. I asked the umpire standing atop how he saw the ball, the umpire called it good. And all hell broke loose for Roman Borvanov. But it didn’t stop there. Today, Roman was serving at 4-4, 15-30 he hit a forehand wide which I called out. And his temper picked off where it was yesterday. Didn’t even bother to shake my hand after the match. Sometimes I don’t understand these type of players, it’s not like my game plan is to cheat him so I can win. That was not the way I was brought up. At least I got one of the biggest wins of my career so far, Roman is currently ranked #244 on the ATP circuit. That makes me #243 right πŸ˜‰

The championship match was a battle. My opponent, Nick Monroe definitely brought his A game. He took the first break of serve in the first set going up 4-3. I played a great next game bringing it back to 4-4. By then I was locked in and focused on my game plan which gave me a 6-4 first set. I was feeling good at that point, relaxed and focused. But Nick stepped up his game in the second set and took a 6-4 set. In the third set both of us were playing well, every point was hard fought. His service at 1-2 was crucial for me. I must have had five or six break points and every time he came up with a great shot. But I came up big and won that last break point I had. That set the tone for the rest of the set, I took the set at 6-1.

It’s been a great week here in Phoenix. I thought I played very well the whole week, definitely on top of my game right now. But after a rest tomorrow it’s back to the courts and gym again to continue where I’ve left off in Phoenix. Have to thank my U of M friends here in Phoenix for keeping me relaxed throughout the week and cheering me on even when they had to go into work today (Monday). That’s the Michigan connection!

I’ll keep the updates coming as I make my way to China at the end of this month for two tournaments.


Go Blue!


– JJ



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