Yesterday I have been playing my first final in a national squash tournament (Division C). More than that it was the National Championship. I did not manage to win it, but I know for sure that I have fought with all I had.
Now, looking back at yesterday’s game I noticed the 53 minutes duration. Well, this is now officially my longest squash game. And this brings me to the title of this post: 300 hours of squash. Yes, yesterday during the final I have reached another beautiful milestone as #squashaddict.
But what does it really bring and mean to me, because it’s far from being just a number on a piece of paper?
First of all I am fascinated by how my physical condition improved every month. A year ago after 1-2 matches in the same day I needed a massage the day after. Not to mention that 2 games together last year were not 53 minutes long. Now, after an entire tournament, I have woke up the next day and I feel fresh as a daisy. This is fantastic and I can only thank my coach Gelu who kills me with every chance he has during our training sessions. The hard and smart work pays off. Inner victory numer one.
Second of all I am grateful for the emotional ballance that I have managed to find. A year ago no matter what game I was playing in a tournament, I was feeling so nervous that I could barely stand on my feet. I still have a long journey ahead of me and the first two sets of yesterday’s final are a testament of that, but I feel that the progress I’ve made during my last 20 tournaments is huge. It’s another inner victory that I can treasure at anytime.
Third of all, but for sure not last, is the quality of my game. Yesterday in the final, by the way my opponent has started, it seemed that I had no shot I could execute better than him. Being also 10 years younger than me, the physical battle was to be avoided. I lost the first set without finding any solution about what I could do to disturb his game plan and switch him over to mine. Second set proved to be as unfortunate as the first. After this one I have finally found a common ground plan with my coach and decided to try something that we have experienced lately at our training sessions: speedup the game. I had nothing to loose and I have started to play like a beast. Every shot that I could reach I would volley, every chance I would get, I would move him from one side of the court to the other. All these with clear, long and powerful shots (as they can be for a Division C player). I have found myself in a zone I have never been before.
This is my greatest win of yesterday’s final and of these 300 hours on court: a game that last year I could only dream of. Thank you Gelu for this! And of course I thank myself for all the hard and smart work I did, for the passion and dedication! Grateful! Happy!