Q&A with Sanam Singh
The top-ranked Virginia men’s tennis team travels to Seattle this week for the 2011 ITA National Team Indoor Championships. The Cavaliers are looking for their unprecedented fourth consecutive title and open the event Friday at 9:30 p.m. ET when they meet host Washington. Virginiasports.com talked with senior Sanam Singh to preview the tournament.
Question: What will it mean for the team this weekend to have the chance to play against some of the top teams in the country at National Team Indoors?
Singh: This is the first big tournament of the season and probably first true test for our team. We have put in the hard work on the court, in practice, and in the gym. We know teams will be gunning for us because we are seeded No. 1, but we have to take it match by match and be ready each time we take the courts.
Question: What are the challenges with playing four matches in four days against some of the better teams in the country?
Singh: That is always a challenge, but we are pretty fit right now so it shouldn’t be a problem. Sometimes matches finish late at night and you could have one at the next morning. There’s a quick turnaround so you have to make sure you recover properly.
Question: Virginia has won the National Team Indoors the past three years, what would it mean to you to win it all four years of your career?
Singh: That would be unbelievable. The fact that we have won the past three years feels really good, but we need to think of this as just another tournament. We are going there to make a show what this year’s team in capable of.
Question: What do you think of the depth of this year’s team?
Singh: On paper this team obviously looks unbelievable, but when you get out on the court you can’t rely on that. You need to go out there and make sure everyone takes care of business. It doesn’t matter if you’re No. 1, No. 19 or No. 90 in the country, you need to go out there and play every point. That’s what we need to focus on, controlling what you can on the court, and not what individual rankings are.
Question: What will it be like to play only road matches for the next month and a half?
Singh: It feels weird that my first away match of the year is at National Team Indoors. We have opened the year at home and have had good crowds. Now we need to get ready for playing Washington at their court in the first round of Indoors. We have some other tough road matches coming up, but those experiences will help us get better.
Question: How will it feel to play in Seattle again, where you won the National Team Indoors title for the first time three years ago?
Singh: It’s a little different of a situation this time. Going out there my first year, we hadn’t won one before. Winning that title was obviously a great feeling, but if we can accomplish that this year I feel like it will be an equally good feeling. We can’t get ahead of ourselves and need to take every match as it comes.