In the case of Magda Linette, the rule “Up to 30 times lucky” worked. It took that many attempts to the Grand Slam main bracket to pass the third round for the first time. And she was not satisfied with breaking this barrier. Thanks to advancing to the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, the Polish woman born in 1992 became the eighth tennis player in the last 50 years who reached this stage at the age of at least 30.
Players’ Council – time-consuming, but very valuable activity. Break through with your opinion
Ranking 45th in the WTA ranking, the player, who will debut in the top 30 next week, has been speaking more and more widely in the media for some time now. She touched on various topics, including important and sometimes difficult ones. Recently, she has also become more active on social media. In the second half of last year, she began to look better and better on the court and continues to do so at the beginning of this year. Maturity on and off the court has already made her a successful career in Melbourne.
The Polish woman has often openly talked about the difficulties in finding sponsors whose support would make it easier for her to focus solely on tennis development. She was also asked about it at the Australian Open.
– Thanks to such help, it is possible to enlarge the training staff and ensure a much greater professionalization of preparations. Plus, it also gives you some financial security and the feeling that whatever happens on the court, you’re not really fighting for your life. Because at the beginning of the road, the players are in such a situation. If you win, you can afford to take your coach to the next tournament. But if you lose, a difficult question arises and you either have to let go or look for another way, explained the Poznań resident.
She herself is an example of a person whose life is now not limited to tennis alone. Since 2021, she has been a member of the WTA Players’ Council. She admits that it is a very absorbing job.
– We have a lot of extra things to do and meetings related to this. It takes a lot more time and energy than I expected. This was to prepare for the life after life. So that I could communicate better, express myself better. So that I could break through and express my opinion in front of people who have a lot of authority. Sometimes it is very hard to oppose Victoria Azarence. It took me over a year – he laughs, referring to the Belarusian who is also active in this group.
However, the Polish woman assures that although it is a time-consuming job, she has benefited greatly from it. – It really gave me a lot. It’s easier for me to speak. I feel stronger in expressing my opinion. It definitely helped me on the court, I am more confident – sums up Linette.
The pros and cons of studying during a tennis career. Crisis moment
She left the world of tennis a few years ago, when she started studying at Indiana University East. From 2021, he can boast of a bachelor’s degree. She studied business and administration on an extramural basis. The Polish woman admits that such an extra job had its advantages, but then there were also disadvantages.
“In the beginning, it helped me to disassociate myself from tennis in a positive way. But then those three or four hours of study a day was too much. I was burned out by the end. I felt like I was barely making it. I was also getting ready for knee surgery at the time and wondered if I would even graduate. Because I couldn’t handle it anymore. I was really mentally exhausted. I had to take a break of at least about a year – recalls a difficult period in the life of a 30-year-old.
Starting studies during a tennis career among players competing on a daily basis in WTA and ATP tournaments is rather rare. We asked Linette in Melbourne if she didn’t feel like she might have lost something in sports due to the hardships associated with her education. She admitted that she discussed it with coach Mark Gellard.
– Because in fact, sometimes we had the feeling that maybe I couldn’t train as much. But I’m not sure either, because on the other hand, spending too much time on it is also not good. And it’s worth having such a springboard. That’s why I wanted to take a break from my studies. Because at the beginning I had a lot of energy for it, I enjoyed it, but at the end there was a huge crisis. Before the exams, I cried because I couldn’t cope with fatigue – she says.
Her studies lasted almost six years. The tennis player emphasizes that although she had extramural mode, it did not mean a reduced tariff.
– It’s not so easy to get a pass there. I had specific things to do. There was a lot of interaction with others. There was always something to add or write. It was very time-consuming and tiring, but from the point of view of tennis, we were meeting the hourly schedule that we assumed. So I don’t think it took anything away from me. But the last 5-6 months have been very difficult.
Linette is already thinking about a new side job
Linette, however, does not like boredom, and besides, she is aware that she is already an experienced player and does not have a whole career ahead of her on the court.
So I was wondering if I should go back to college. If I do, I’d like them to be more focused on what I’d like to do after tennis. However, I do not want to take them too quickly, because I know how little free time I have now and I know how difficult it was for me. Even more so when traveling. And I want to do it all right. And I want to get as much out of my tennis career as I can.
The Polish woman also does not hide that the decision to continue her education must be made carefully due to its high cost.
– Master’s studies in the USA cost a lot, and there are not so many scholarships in the fields that I would be interested in – he adds.
The 30-year-old also has an alternative idea to keep her head busy outside of tennis. As he says, he is considering creating “something of his own”. What that “something” would be, I don’t want to reveal yet. He only admits that it probably wouldn’t be a tennis academy or a club.
“I’ve always wondered what it would really be like.” I do not want to reveal it too hastily, but plans are slowly sprouting. I don’t want to give specifics yet, because I don’t really want to give others a mistake – argues Linette.
Tristin is an accomplished author and journalist, known for his in-depth and engaging writing on sports. He currently works as a writer at 247 News Agency, where he has established himself as a respected voice in the sports industry.