Inside the head: Graf talks tennis at MC
April 8, 2011
“The Courier” recently spoke with senior tennis player, Sam Graf to discuss how he got started playing tennis, what he enjoys most about his sport, and how tennis has helped him off the court.
Farraher: When did you start playing tennis?
Graf: I started playing tennis a little bit when I was 10, but I didn’t get serious until my freshman year of high school. My dad was the high school coach and he worked with me throughout high school.
Farraher: What is your favorite thing about tennis?
Graf: My favorite thing about tennis is that every player brings a different style to the match.
Farraher: How do you keep in shape in the off season, not just physically, but how do you keep in ‘tennis’ shape?
Graf: Tennis and ROTC go hand in hand for me as far as keeping in shape. I try to run and do a variety of circuit drills on a regular basis.
Farraher: Do/did you play any other sports that helped you become a better tennis player?
Graf: I played basketball from sixth grade to eleventh grade. Basketball developed my athleticism; that transfers well to the tennis court.
Farraher: How has tennis helped you off the court?
Graf: Tennis can be a frustrating sport at times, but I have learned to keep control of my emotions well both on and off the court. Tennis has taught me how to deal with ups and downs.
Farraher: How do you prepare for a match? (i.e. what kind of music do you listen to? Do you have any superstitious routines?)
Graf: I don’t do anything special to prepare for a match. I try to get an adequate amount of sleep the night before and just try to focus on going out there and doing my best.
Farraher: Is your style of play more aggressive, or do you like to sit back, play defensively and let your opponent make a mistake?
Graf: I play multiple styles. I try to limit my mistakes by playing consistently, but I am not afraid to charge the net at the opportune time.
BY ANDREW FARRAHER