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I started playing wheelchair tennis at the age of 11. It was actually my big sister who suggested it. I have a lot to thank her for in that department. Many others too, but especially that one.
I like the feeling and the challenge of constantly trying to improve and get better at my sport. That feeling of being able to do more now than I could last week is something I really enjoy.
My ultimate aim is to win a Gold medal at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo and to win all four Grand Slams in a year
My biggest moment so far has been winning the 2017 Australian Open, that was my first time. The Australian Open was the first Grand Slam I played in, so it has special meaning for me. I also have fond memories of my victory over Jiske Griffioen at that tournament.
I like the feeling and the challenge of constantly trying to improve and get better at my sport.
My days are pretty regimented. I wake up at 07:00, then I have tennis practice 10:00–12:00, then a second session 13:00–15:00, I finish the day with a fitness session from 16:00–18:00 before going to bed at 22:00.
Sticking with this kind of daily approach helps me regain my momentum after a bad day or a tough loss. I basically just practice until I begin to feel better.
It’s understanding that balance between the physical and mental sides of the game. For me, it’s about 40% physical and about 60% mental. Even being in the very best physical condition cannot guarantee you the very best mental condition. But even if you’re not in the best physical condition, your game will be improved by being in a good mental situation.
One of the ways I try to acclimatise myself to all the travelling we do in our sport is to, as the saying goes, ‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do.’ It’s important to adapt to the different culture of a place and get used to the particular circumstances there. That helps you feel at home. I have a real spirit of enquiry, always wanting to know more. So that helps me in many situations.
I really enjoy sightseeing so that really helps get to know a place. The travelling is actually quite a nice part of the sport for me.
To relax, I like to watch pretty much any sport. I play table tennis for fun, it’s a good way to unwind but to stay competitive.
I have a real spirit of enquiry, always wanting to know more. So that helps me in many situations.
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