Getting To Know... Alexa Glatch
Published August 02, 2011 12:39
CARLSBAD, CA, USA - Now 21, Alexa Glatch set American hearts racing when she made the final of the 2005 US Open juniors - finishing runner-up to a certain Victoria Azarenka - and also reached the second round of the main event. The same year, the young Californian advanced to the semis at the Forest Hills WTA stop but a few months later was involved in an accident that resulted in a broken wrist and elbow. Out of the game for eight months, she nevertheless went on to represent the US with distinction at Fed Cup - earning a nomination for one of the competition's Heart Awards.
We caught up with world No.155 Alexa after her first round win over Ekaterina Makarova at the Mercury Insurance Open, which set a clash with Andrea Petkovic, the No.2 seed.
How did you get into tennis?
AG: I started playing when I was about five years old. My parents played a little bit, and I'd go out to the courts at the local club in Irvine with them. I just really enjoyed it from the beginning.
Tell us about your family.
AG: My parents are both retired. My mom Lisa was an engineer, and my dad Trey owned his own mortgage business. When I was born he quit his job and stayed at home with me and my brother, Tyler. My brother is 18 now, and getting ready to go to college. he's a golf player. He's going to Boston University, so I'm pretty excited for him.
What's your coaching situation at the moment?
AG: I've been working with a guy in Colorado, his name is Andy Potter. Whenever I'm there, I work with him. And when I'm travelling I work with another guy, Rick Mortera. He played at Oregon and he's just out of college. We've been working together since the beginning of the year.
How do you describe your playing style?
AG: I'd say I'm an all-court player. I have a lot of variety, I like to mix it up - mix up the pace. My serve is one of my biggest weapons, and lately I've just been working on being a little more aggressive and dictating points a little more.
If you could steal a shot from another player, what would it be?
AG: I would probably take Rafa's forehand.
Do you have a tennis idol?
AG: Growing up, I really looked up to Steffi Graf. I loved watching her play and liked her game… I think that's where I picked up my slice backhand from! Also, Pete Sampras was a big idol of mine.
Best tennis memory so far?
AG: Probably Fed Cup, when we played the semis in the Czech Republic in 2009 and I beat both Petra Kvitova and Iveta Benesova, and then also the finals in Italy. Those were two unbelievable experiences and something I'll never forget.
Who has been your toughest opponent?
AG: Well, I've played Serena twice, so I have to say Serena!
What are your goals in tennis?
AG: You know, just to keep improving every day - keep working hard to try and maximize my potential and see where it takes me. Hopefully that's Top 20, Top 10 some day. But I know it takes time.
Favorite tournament and surface?
AG: My favorite surface is hardcourt - I grew up on hardcourts so it feels comfortable for me. My favorite tournament has to be the US Open, being an American. The atmosphere there is unlike anything else.
How far did you go in your education?
AG: I was home schooled, mostly, just because of tennis. I mean, I started playing international events when I was 13, and it was just too tough. I was accepted to UCLA but didn't take it up.
What do you like to do for fun?
AG: Just normal things. Hang out with friends. Going to the movies. And I love sports - all sports. I started skiing a little bit this past winter, and I also surf. A lot of outdoor stuff.
Do you have a favorite type of music or band?
AG: I like Green Day a lot… kind of alternative music.
If you could meet anyone in the world, who would you like it to be?
AG: Tony Romo, quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys.
Your house is on fire… what do you grab?
AG: I'd save my animals: my four cats - Dizzy, Porky, Peewee and Ziggy - and my dog, Cali.