Made progress but lost the match
Anytime you have a match point in a tennis match and can’t close it out, it’s a tough loss. Unfortunately, that exactly what happened to me last night. I lost 6-2, 3-6, 13-11 in the 10-point 3rd set tiebreaker. In fact, I had TWO match points that I couldn’t convert. Ouch.
Side note: I hate those 3rd set tiebreakers. Win or lose, it doesn’t feel good.
As much as I want to beat myself up about the match, I really can’t. I played well. I played “the right way. My mental game was a lot stronger and I made a nice comeback. There are definitely some things to build on.
I also played smart tennis. After getting my ass kicked in the 1st set where I was having trouble holding my serve, I changed to a much more aggressive and attacking style of play. I probably attacked the net 30 times in the second set alone and converted many of those points with clean volley winners. I’ve NEVER been a net player in singles, but it was working in this match, so I kept doing it. I know that if we had played out the 3rd set I would have won, because over the long-haul I was winning more points.
I also got my head straight by deciding where the ball was going (most of the time). My opponent had a really good forehand, so I literally hit it to his backhand 80% of the time. Just kept drilling it down the line. This allowed me to focus on the ball and watch it longer. The only problem was that occasionally my mind would go blank and I would revert to some of my “old ways”. If I watched the ball, I was successful. If I didn’t, I wasn’t. It was a good lesson on how just making up my mind where I want to hit the ball can improve my game.
I’m disappointed, but it was good progress. I have a better understanding of what I need to do to improve my tennis game and I have more confidence now. I just wish I could have closed out that match. Damn.