Tennis Prose



Random Player Biofile: Hai Ying Yuan

Former national 400 meter hurdles champ says tennis is “funner” than running
 It’s easy to notice Hai Ying Yuan playing tennis at Overpeck Park in Leonia, NJ. Her strikingly mature form is a stark contrast to the typical chippers and choppers that typically use public park courts. Yuan has only been playing tennis for over a year but she is a former professional athlete from a different sporting arena. 

Yuan was a national 400 meter hurdles champion in China almost two decades ago. Which would explain her eye-catching skills and natural, elegant movements. She has a passion for tennis and self improvement which have also accelerated her progress to the point that she can sustain long rallies with far, far more experienced players. Her game is already nearly complete: solid strokes off both wings and an uncanny ability to volley at net and hit overheads although her serve is a work in progress.

Yuan spoke about her tennis interest in this interview conducted at Overpeck Park in Leonia, NJ…

First Tennis Memory: “My dad watched some tennis when I was younger. He was a gymnastics coach. I remember Agassi, Sampras, Chang. I remember seeing my dad watch on TV back home in Beijing.”

How Did You Start Tennis: “What got me into tennis? A Chinese woman in my town (Leonia) is a beginner, she got me to play. I could hit the ball but I never knew what I was doing. I started with her. I was thinking, I can do better than her. I know I have athletic background. I started playing. I want to get better. I started looking for people I can play.”

Why Do You Love Tennis: “It’s funner and more social than running. The purpose is exercise. There’s more to tennis than jogging, and it’s funner. Also, I know I can do better. At the park, a lot of people try to coach you.”

Best Moment: “I enjoy watching Roger Federer play. To see, not only to win, but his form is very enjoyable to watch.”

Your Tennis Strengths: “I can run all over the court. Others need practice. I know I can run. It’s an advantage.”

Your Weaknesses: “Sometimes I can’t take it too seriously. I want to concentrate on every ball I hit. I play too casual sometimes. I don’t care if I win or lose. It’s how to treat every ball seriously.”

Racquet Used: Babolat.

Shoes: Nike and Asics.



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