I won a set of singles at tennis last week.
This really shouldn't be an occasion for a blog entry, but I was thinking about it afterwards, and it had probably been close to two years since that had happened. I have had a horrible start to fixtures (this was the first set my team has won all year, after losing 19 straight), and I've been losing sets (albeit sometimes close sets) to Matt for the last few months. Before that was knee surgery and rehab, and it was probably against Franck or someone in Rennes that I last had a singles set go my way.
I talk a very good game these days about getting pleasure from playing well rather than winning on the scoresheet, but the two really are so closely linked. The preceding 3 weeks that I'd played fixtures, I had lost despite hitting the ball reasonably well - I just failed to do what was necessary, head-wise, to construct points and games. That was probably more frustrating than losing because of poor ball-striking.
Last week, though, I hit the ball pretty well, and really scrapped to stay in the game. My opponent was better than me - if we played 10 sets, he'd win probably 7 or 8, and I was actually thinking during the match, "I don't mind if I lose this - my opponent is better than me, and I'm just so happy I've made it a competitive match".
I actually played OK in the doubles, too - we were down 4-1 when we called time - but my doubles play had been OK the previous week or two, so I was less struck by it.