Tag Archives: Simona Halep

One Day I Will Process What Happened. Today is Not That Day….

Sitting through the Roland Garros trophy ceremony in 2014, thinking “Simo put up an unbelievable fight, her time will come, it’s fine.” Sitting through the 2017 Roland Garros Ceremony thinking “I really wonder what it’s like to lift one of these slam trophies, the pain is very real this time. I feel it. A huge punch to the gut. I really thought it was her time, at her favorite grand slam. ” Sitting through the 2018 Australian Open ceremony thinking “Did it really happen again? What did she do to deserve this fate for a third time? Do the gods want her to have a slam?” June 9th, 2018. The 2018 Roland Garros ceremony. “She did it. We did it. So this is what it feels like. Bliss. Pure bliss.”

The point to the intro is, you will feel many things in times of hardship. But how do you get through them? Realize what the greater goal is after defeat. You feel heartbreak for the first time. You move on, it happens. You feel heartbreak for the second time. You move on, it happens. It really hurts, but it happens. You feel heartbreak for the third time. You don’t want to move on. You start to question everything. But you have to move on. You have to. You wait. Just wait. Sure enough, like the old cliché saying goes… good things come to those who wait. The longer you wait for something, the more you appreciate it when you finally get it. We’ve all felt what that winning a title feeling is like, but never in a slam. We wondered: what can that possibly feel like? You see her serve, you see Sloane Stephens hit a forehand return into the net, you see arms in the air, hands on her face, and you realize… it’s real. How real is it? That’s the feeling I wanted to talk about in this article. Not about the match overall, but the feeling of seeing an idol to so many all over the world win something that she’s never been able to grasp in her lifetime.

I think every Simo fan will tell you after this victory that there are no words to describe this feeling. But I love words. They give us the ability to express ourselves in vivid detail, they give us the ability to let loose, get over our worries, conquer our fears, immerse ourselfs in joyfulness, and paint a picture that is different from every other person in the world. Our words are our own. We may all be celebrating and talking about the same title, but each and every one of us is uniquely describing what it feels like that will be more different from the next person. That’s what makes this so special.

Personally, from the very beginning I had no idea how I would react if this ended in our favor. I still had no idea at 5-1 40-30. When it happens though, it just hits you. Boy oh boy did it ever hit me hard and I know I’m speaking for everyone here. There was no punch to the gut, no tearing up because you had to watch Simo in pain, and no more enduring more agonizing months of waiting. I was standing on championship point, the ball hit the net and I was suddenly on the floor, hands in face? I think that’s how it went. I don’t remember. It happened so fast I just knew I was on the floor. Also the fact that there were definitely plenty of tears streaming down too. I saw Simo also having her hands in her face and I could not believe what was happening. I saw elation on my TL, pure elation. I wept some more for you guys. My happiness was fun, Simo’s happiness was fun, but seeing everyone else explode was better than I ever imagined. I never ever in my lifetime read through so much happiness from her fellow players, neutral fans, and above all… my dear Simo fans. You guys were there being positive when she was going through her worst moments. You made me smile when I didn’t think I could. You guys never gave up. I love you all and you deserve this so much. Like I said, we are all celebrating her greatness at the same time, but each of us felt something different. Whether watching at home, at a party, at a bar, at a family/friend gathering, or with thousands of other fans… we watched it. We really did watch it.


You realize in that moment that it’s real, that the suffering is over, and that we were about to lose our minds in the best of ways. You see her climb the wall and hug her team and her family. You remember what it was like to watch many tennis players do that after winning a grand slam. You say to yourself “I want to see that from MY favorite player.” Well guys, we did. Simo hugged her proud coach Darren tight; the embrace we’ve seen before but you knew this one meant the most. She hugged Mama and Papa Halep, her proud parents. This was likely happening at the same time we were hugging the people we watched the match with. I don’t think there was ever more love at that moment than any other time in our lives as a tennis fan.

She walked up to the podium, waved to the crowd. She spoke. We listened. I feel like I drowned out the noise of every sound in the world to hear her in this moment, a moment where she tried to address so many inspired people all over the world that always wondered what this moment would be like, and realized how hard she worked and believed to get to this very stage. This was not a speech of disappointment, or a speech congratulating the winner, this was Simo on the podium, ON TOP! She had a smile that didn’t say ‘I’m holding back something I don’t want you to see’ but rather, ‘I’m smiling because I did it. This is my time and I’m going to make sure you know how much this means to me’ Last but not least… lifting the trophy. The final stage of this unbelievable day when she showed the world how high she could lift it, how high her spirit was, how bright her smile was, and that nobody was snatching this trophy away from her. We never again have to ask the question of “what would a grand slam trophy look like in Simo’s arms?” It is in her arms. Eyes closed she hugged it like it was her long-lost family member that she never knew how much she loved until it was in her grasp. Hold it tight dear Simo, and don’t worry…. it’s never leaving you anyway.

I hope you enjoyed my description of this moment. I really needed to let it out in the best way I could. June 9th, 2018. Simo’s day. Our day.

One day I will process what happened… but today is not that day.


2017 Season Preview/Predictions of Simo Halep. Is a Grand Slam Title Finally in the Cards?

Welcome back fellow Halepenos and HalepBand!! It is that time again as we are ready to kick off another year of supporting our champion. Last year Simo started very slow with a first round exit in the first slam in the year down under. She came into it with an illness which ended up becoming a more serious issue than initially expected and she even announced that she would have nasal surgery to fix it which would’ve sidelined her for at least a month including fed cup. Here’s where I jump in to say THANK GOD SHE POSTPONED IT WE GOT THE GREATEST KVITALEP MATCH OF ALL TIME BECAUSE OF THAT!! Ok. Moving on. Simo went on to win three titles in 2016: Madrid, (her first one in 14 months) Bucharest for the second time in her career (the first one she ever won multiple times) and another huge win in Montreal over Madison Keys the week before the Olympics which she didn’t participate in. She kind of struggled towards the end of the year but one of her highlights even in defeat was a very hard-fought battle against Serena in Flushing Meadows at the US Open which she lost in three sets. Including one of the most clutch sets you’ll see in a long time where she faced 12 break points in the second set and saved every single one to win it.

So…. What does 2017 have in store for us? She will begin her journey in Shenzhen again; an event which she won back in 2015. Barring health issues, as I believe every year, the highlight of this year will be seeing her stand in front of a massive crowd kissing her first career grand slam trophy. Doubters and haters will say she will never be able to do it because of weak mental strength, power, etc. but they have never stopped us before in believing it will happen. Simo has to trust herself most importantly, live in the moment and play without fear because that’s the only thing holding her back as of now since we know her fighting spirit and talent has never been in question.He can’t help her on court during them but believe in Darren to show her the way to this majestic trophy! He’s a wizard don’t ever doubt that! This partnership has many great things left to accomplish in her career. I think Simo can win at least five titles this year (my bias could even do more if I wanted! But five sounded nice to start with) And I’m gonna predict them (despite not knowing draws which of course would help) and the results at every slam for starters here:

Australian Open: QF- This one is hard to predict for a lot more reasons than usual mainly because it’s so early in the year and it can be hard to get fully zoned into grand slam mode immediately starting 2017, you don’t know who is hot and who is cold yet, and the extreme heat is always random and that can get concerning on certain days. I mean I know she can go further but she has never reached a SF here and so I’m hesitant to think she will all of a sudden, but she has the talent to even win this so I’m trying to be cautious but at the same time optimistic! Based on plenty of experience… it’s better to be pleasantly surprised than expect a title and get let down again.

Roland Garros– Winner! A boring and obvious pick for many as the one she will win first but hey, this is her favorite event to play so why shouldn’t it be here? And she has shown amazing success here before and on clay in general. I still am very bitter about how it ended last year as the conditions were extremely horrid and they made her play through them and it cost her a loss. It’s not like she played great but come on she should’ve never been out there. That could’ve easily been her first slam too who knows. Ok that’s enough of Jake’s rant session that’s a topic you don’t want to push me on! So throw away the loss to Lucic Baroni in 2015 and her resume here doesn’t look too shabby.

Wimbledon: QF- This would be the same result as last year and I feel the same way about this one as AO because I know she can have success here and the 2014 SF shows that, but grass has never been her best surface and I feel she will need some draw luck to go deep. If she didn’t have to play Angie last year I think she could’ve had a shot at the title again so while this wouldn’t be an amazing run, I am still optimistic that she can go even deeper here! She has to believe I keep saying that’s always the key!

US Open- Final. I don’t know if she can win but I can easily see her making her first USO final this year because she has played some fantastic tennis in New York and nearly made it in 2015 before falling very flat in the SF vs Pennetta. If she gets there, it’s not like I’m automatically predicting a loss I am just saying I think she’s gonna get there and the rest will play out itself. I mean it could be against Serena for all we know and that’s big trouble (not that it’s totally impossible to beat her 😉 If she already has one this year coming into this one, the thought of her playing for her second one in the same year gives me so many feels don’t touch me right now I’m getting emotional.

The main thing I’m praying for this grand slam season are that there are no extremely early round flops to break our hearts. (Ok YES ANY GRAND SLAM LOSS WILL BREAK OUR HEARTS BUT YOU GET ME) Because this has happened at least once in each of the past couple of years and we know it’s very difficult to deal with! It crushes me seeing all of her fans sad after losses like those because it’s so unexpected and it’s just like a huge bomb out of nowhere dropping down on her fanbase. If she is gonna lose at a slam I prefer it to be later because at least she gave herself a much better chance to lift the trophy.

Also another prediction that is probably worth mentioning is her ranking status this year. She is currently #4 in the world and you have to think if she can maintain that consistency and stay in the top 5 the whole year that would be another great year for her. Of course her reaching #1 in the world is another huge achievement that we would all love to see her get to at some point, but it certainly won’t be easy. However, it’s obviously not impossible and there will be some nice chances early for her to get at least to #3 by the end of the Australian Open and if she wins it, could leapfrog all the way to #2 if I’m not mistaken. Bottom line, my prediction is that she will end at #3. I think staying in the top 5 is still my main wish but I’m not ruling her out to get higher and higher if she believes in herself and takes her chances.

Last but not least, my four other trophy predictions include Shenzhen again, Miami, Cincy and Singapore. Why not try for some more new trophies for her trophy case! Feel free to make your predictions on her titles, her grand slam results and anything else you want! Regardless of how her year plays out I can’t wait to support Simo with all of you for another year. Win or lose we always have her beautiful smile, her positivity, her cuteness, her kindness, her hard work ethic, and too many more amazing qualities to count. That counts for more than any tennis result could. I wish you all a healthy and Happy New Year and let’s make 2017 the best one yet! Hai Super Simo!!

Hope you enjoyed reading!


Five Reasons Why Simo Will and Won’t Win Roland Garros

Since I made one for Petra of course I had to do one for Super Simo! There are always plenty of questions for her entering every slam it seems like and each one the anticipation grows and grows of when that elusive first slam title will come. The following points will show why she will finally get that first slam here in beautiful Paris, and why she will have to wait another month to try again.

Five Reasons Why Simo Will Win Roland Garros

  1. She is as confident as she has been in a long time

This year has been a rocky one with not many positives and nearly was cut short after an announced surgery that ended up never happening. We often have to question her confidence and yes a lot of it is bad luck with injuries, but there have been losses this year that are hard to explain. However, she is fresh off of her biggest win of the season and the past 14 months with her title in Madrid that seemingly came out of nowhere. (Or it was a long time coming if you’re like us and know how hard she constantly works) It came at the perfect time as Simo has to feel like her game is right where it needs to be and she can fully believe that she can lift this trophy. Everything came together and she proved that the good times were far from over. Any title is special but when she got one this big and right before a slam, her confidence will never get higher. Forget about the early loss in Rome right after that. It’s very hard to get focused that quickly and switch court speeds like that. I would not put any stock on that result. As long as she didn’t get injured it’s fine. That should not change her belief.

  1. She finally seems to be getting toward 100% health wise

Before Madrid started this was a major concern as we saw because she got absolutely crushed by Laura Siegemund in Stuttgart and her injury from Fed Cup the previous weekend was a big factor. She couldn’t do anything she wanted to do and was very limited in her shots and movement. I still think it was an event she should not have entered as she said her ankle was still very painful after the weekend and basically tried to run on adrenaline alone. That wasn’t going to cut it and it showed. In Madrid she basically made all of our worries disappear as there were no signs of trouble with it during her title run. Even in Rome it didn’t seem to be that bad, it was just a tough recovery match right after a long week in Madrid. Me personally I don’t have concerns about it unless she says something bad about it. Simo moved beautifully all week in Madrid and if she is 100% percent healthy or close to it unlike in Melbourne this year during the first slam… then watch out she can win it all; especially because of how often injuries have held her back in the past and what kind of player she is when fully healthy.

  1. She is a very good clay court player

There is no doubt about it she has the game on this surface to win it. There are so many ways that clay suites her game. She slides so well and it enhances her world class defending skills to a point where it can drive her opponents crazy. The SF and Finals matches in Madrid proved every bit of that. She will never be able to outhit the big power guns but what she can do is make them earn every point they play and players like them are more vulnerable to breaking down because of that. Simo likes the long points and if she can make them work harder than they have to she will have them right where she wants them. It’s not like she has no power at all either; she is very capable of turning her brilliant defense into offense quickly and that will be a crucial step to win this title.

  1. The WTA has not been in a consistent state this year

This was a positive reason in my Petra article and I believe it can easily be used again because of how important it is. You never know what you’re going to get at a WTA event this year because of all of the inconsistent players and this is something Simo can take advantage of. I mean she kind of did it in Madrid because she was the only seeded player in the QFs. It doesn’t matter how she did it though because she hasn’t taken advantage that often in the previous 14 months without a title. This draw is also capable of breaking down and if Simo has a favorable enough draw we could see her playing opponents that are very manageable which would mean a deeper result and perhaps her being fresher for the really tough opponents down the road. That being said, the slam draws haven’t mattered to her much the past year or so as she’s lost to players like Zhang, Cepelova, Lucic Baroni, etc. She can’t take advantage of draws without beating those kind of players.

  1. Her only grand slam final was at this very event

Yes it’s time to bring back one of the best Simo moments of all time when she made a memorable run to the 2014 Roland Garros final and nearly captured her first grand slam title against Maria Sharapova. That is a match if you have to watch one Simo match that she didn’t win, that’s the one. It demonstrates all of the reasons Simo has a great chance to win this slam every year and why many people think her first one will be here. Everyone already knows she can challenge any player on the tour but this just showed that in the biggest moments she is ready to fight her hardest until the very end. The strengths that I described about Simo on clay earlier were in full force against Maria who is one of the toughest competitors of the game during this era. She did everything but win the match and I fully believe that when she has the chance, she will show her best again and this time it will be good enough to win.

Five Reasons Why Simo Won’t Win Roland Garros

  1. She puts too much pressure on herself by saying there is no pressure

Every slam it seems we hear the same thing from her ‘I have no expectations, I’m just going to play my game and see what happens’ Well I know she means well but it’s like she is trying so hard to avoid pressure to make it seem like she doesn’t have to worry about it, and next thing you know she is out. You can’t say things that are unrealistic and I know some will say this is a good frame of mind but to me it makes it seem she is making it harder on herself by avoiding any pressure talks. I’m not saying she should just admit the pressure is on and she’s nervous, but in reality it will always be there and she has to deal with it. If she plays it too safe again she won’t last long.

  1. Grand Slams have ended in horrific fashion for her many times recently

Recent history shows that this is the main concern for why Simo will not win Roland Garros this year although it’s my second reason. When Simo loses at a slam, she doesn’t just lose, she collapses in a terrifying way. There is no warning of when it is coming, it just happens and we have to sit there stunned and depressed. This isn’t a reason that can be explained other than she just faces the wrong opponents at the wrong time. Think of her slam losses since 2014 Wimbledon. Lucic Baroni badly twice, basically giving up against Makarova in 2015 AO, no answer for Cepelova in the first round of 2015 Wimbledon, and then again a complete no show in USO SF against Flavia Pennetta after one of her greatest matches in her career against Vika. And of course we can’t forget this year’s first round defeat in Melbourne where Zhang blew her off the court. That leads to my next point. There isn’t a legit loss for Simo at a slam since that RG final I just discussed. It happens way too often for a player of her stature and don’t think it can’t happen again.

  1. She can get blown off the court when you least expect it

Like I said before and it’s something that is widely known so you don’t need me to tell you, Simo is not the most powerful player so she is vulnerable to this against the big hitters. She has run into opponents like Lucic Baroni and Zhang who had their way with her in every possible way imagined and there is nothing Simo can do. She just sits back and takes the abuse and in the blink of an eye it’s over. It’s almost like early on she knows she is getting painfully outhit and just goes through the motions the rest of the way until the bleeding is over. This is something that fans can realize early on too that she is in big trouble when her opponents are on fire and painting lines where even her strong defending can’t save her. When players take away her defending ability and being able to turn that into offense, it hurts her chances much more. I am afraid of this reason happening the most because there isn’t a worse feeling than watching her being helpless out there.

  1. Injuries that linger turn into painful consequences

Simo can tell us all she wants that she is feeling great and all of that fine and dandy stuff. However, it always seems her injuries never really go away and get worse and worse during a specific match during a slam or any event for that matter and all of a sudden it is affecting every part of her game and that’s how losses can happen. I’m not saying she is losing at slams because of her injuries, but she has a very fragile body and this is a reason you cannot avoid because we have seen it too many times before. She needs to be able to win matches as quickly as possible early on so she doesn’t put so much wear and tear on her ankle/foot which is usually the main part of her body that has trouble holding up. Clay especially more than any surface in my opinion is where you need healthy feet because of how much running and sliding needs to be done. Plus when movement and defense are her biggest strengths on this surface, it’s not something that would be good at all if that is taken away. I can tell you this much, if she has any troubles with it during this event, you can forget about her winning. Although playing every other day is a plus.

  1. Her mind and emotions are as fragile as her body

This does tie into the other points a bit but still there is more to be said. I feel the emotions part especially is noteworthy because Simo is extremely hard on herself and a perfectionist. This leads to her emotions getting the best of her because she loses control when it isn’t necessary. We saw a great example of this in Madrid when she faced Irina Begu and let a simple tactic or what she thought was bad when Begu was getting coaching during the match play. Those are things she has to put away and not worry about. In slams there are gonna be a lot of tense moments and she has to focus on herself and nothing else. Yes she can’t change the fact that she will get angry on bad shots and want to win every point badly and throw her racquet, etc. She can change when she does it and how often because the less upset she gets, the more energy she saves during the match. Every ounce of energy will be needed for her because of her style. If she doesn’t have enough, of course she won’t win it.

I hope you liked this article and again thank you for reading! You can give more reasons if you please and feel free to agree or disagree with these reasons! Let’s hope for a huge run here once again!

Hai Simo!!


Reliving a Trip of a Lifetime; Attending the 2016 Miami Open

Hello everyone! Last year I had the opportunity to experience the Miami Open in Key Biscayne for the first time in my life for five days. What an experience it was. It made me realize I had to come back again ASAP and this year I did something I couldn’t have imagined would happen so soon but I made it work: attending this great event for nearly the whole two weeks. 12 days to be exact; including my first ever final on the WTA side. It was absolutely incredible. The best part was Petra was here this time after sadly skipping it last year due to fatigue and needing a mental break from tennis. No event is the same without her. That was the only negative of last year but all was well this time! I will try to recap all of my greatest moments here, any fun stories while on the trip, what it was like to be here for an amazing 12 days, and anything else I can think of! Hope you enjoy reading!

First a quick background for you, I stayed about an hour and 15 minutes from the park and with the traffic it added up to about 1.5 hours every day there and back. Compared to Cincy where the drive is only about 20 minutes for me every day. I don’t know how many of you do something like this when you are attending live events but it’s not something I see people do often. I told some fans here about this and they were stunned I would do that. Some people within a half hour of Miami even wouldn’t dare to tackle that traffic everyday like that it’s so rough. The traffic in Miami is one of the worst in the country and that was easily the toughest part of every day. I’m a good driver though no worries. Doesn’t mean that everyone else there is though 😉

Not much changed from last year regarding the scenery, player access, practice schedule chaos and such and most of that is never a bad thing. As always, coming in my mind was set on getting to see as much of my favorites up close as possible and I think I accomplished that mission in a huge way. I saw at least one of them every single day except the first day and the last so it definitely made the trip that much more enjoyable. One of the funniest things about coming every day was some of the staff members especially the parking and ticket people started to recognize me pretty easily. Like every day I came through it was “back again?” Or “Welcome back nice to see you again!” I brought the same stuff every day a little green bag and a camera so it wasn’t the hardest to spot me out I guess.

One of my favorite parts of last year was media day and how close I got to be to Simo as she did various interviews; most of which were funny and interesting so plenty of smiles were involved. This year was no different. This is a very rare time at an event where you get to be up close to players where they aren’t so serious practicing or playing a match and just relaxing and talking and having a good time. It’s quite exciting to watch and just in case you didn’t know, Kvitty and Simo are every bit as relaxed, beautiful and smiley as they seem on TV 🙂

Two moments stood out on this day that were pretty hard to describe how amazing they were but I’ll try. First, right before media day started at about 11 I was walking around looking at the practice courts for my faves because that’s what I always do during a lot of my time. Like last year, the practice schedule was nowhere to be found anywhere so you basically had to walk around to every court every hour to have a chance to find someone you wanted to see practicing. There’s two sections of practice courts, one near the entrance and one way across towards the back of the park so they were far apart. It just created much more work for people to walk all of that way back and forth. That’s the one huge flaw this event has but to give them credit, it was only for the first 4 days or so. Then they had the schedule viewable to the public.

Anyway, the first story. Like I said I was walking around the practice courts and all of a sudden I hear Simo’s grunt and I’m like really… Looking at the time it was just about 11 so I figured I missed all of it. I literally stopped in my tracks and ran over there and sure enough, just as I got there they were walking off. So I found an open spot by the gate where they come out and since there weren’t too many fans around, I got a selfie. That’s never happened and I never expected to get a selfie from a fave after missing their whole practice but that’s how it went and I’m not complaining. (Well I would’ve liked to see some of the practice at least) Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good as they say.


During media day another moment I’ve dreamed about for the longest time happened for a brief moment.  Kvitty was the first to do her interviews and I was watching her do them and it was of course mesmerizing to watch, and I quick turn around a little to the right of me and pretty much right next to me Simo is standing there! No warning! Kvitalep were so close to each other and I was right in the middle of it bye. She went upstairs shortly after but I have to say that alone was worth the trip. I was screaming inside and not breathing I’m not kidding. You just have to know me and something like that does not come around often if ever. Even if it was for a second.


I also watched Petra practice that day which was great as always. The stunning part was that she practiced with Genie that day and she’s probably at the bottom of the list of people you’d expect Petra to practice with but it happened. It was just a bit awkward I have to say… Not very long after that I saw fed practice on stadium court and what a delight that was. It was funny because Lucie was on before him and at the end of her practice while she was still hitting, fed came on and the crowd roared and she was laughing because it just happened suddenly. They passed each other later and there may have been some other words exchanged who knows. As for Roger’s practice, it was great to see him back in action after a couple months missed due to a knee injury sustained after the Australian Open. This practice was the highlight of my experience with him here because I didn’t get to see much else of him sadly the rest of the event after he pulled out of his first match with a stomach virus. He was crisp, moving great and happy, he put on a nice show for the fans.



I had many selfies during this event and the perfect day regarding selfies came on the third day when I got selfies with Kvitty, Simo, and Lucie. All came out pretty good I have to say. Kvitty and Lucie practiced together that day and I was a bit surprised I could get pics with both considering it doesn’t always work that way if they come out at the same time. I also told Petra about me being in the fan book she got for her birthday and she smiled and said it was very nice. We knew that but I doubt she expected someone in it to say something to her about it so soon after she read it. I was just glad to put a smile on her face because she put so many on mine 🙂


The next day was the first match day for Kvitty and Simo but I think those will all be separate articles like I’ve been doing since those are a whole different story. But it’s always an amazing experience seeing those two play live, it is such a joy. Win or lose it’s a dream come true.

The best day of the whole tournament I have to say was the exact day I could’ve hoped it would be; my birthday. I was hoping before it started that Kvitty and/or Simo could’ve played on it but neither did which was fine since it probably was better they didn’t considering what happened. The beginning of the day was a bit strange because I thought Petra’s practice was at 11 so I started to go over to her court at about 10:45 but checked the practice schedule again just to make sure. In yet another misunderstanding it was actually from 10-1130 so it wasn’t the end of the world since I could see the second half of it still, but I was just a bit annoyed that I missed some of it again.

Anyway, I watched her practice and it was easily the best one I saw of the week as she was laughing constantly with her relaxed and goofy team. When it’s not a match day you can expect a little more of this and it didn’t disappoint. My favorite part was when they threw around a nerf football and Petra threw it over the fence and they lost it. Boy that got some great laughs 🙂 Most of you know what happened after but I can’t ever say it enough how happy and amazed I was during it all. I came into the day hoping I could get a birthday wish from her and I told her it was my birthday and she did indeed wish me a happy birthday and then I had a picture of her and she was very nice to write happy birthday on that I was just speechless pretty much. After she signed it I was too out of it and in awe to get a selfie but that didn’t matter. I tried to take a video of her doing something else after it was over and if you ever see it, you can tell how much I’m shaking because I still couldn’t believe what happened.

I could’ve tried to tweet her for a birthday wish and probably wouldn’t have got it, and even if I did it wouldn’t have been anything close to as special as one in person. Like I said I will never be grateful enough I had the opportunity to do this; the fact I could even see her hitting and smiling right in front of me on my birthday was such a great gift already. She is such a wonderful human being as I already knew to take the time to do those things for me, to make a dream come true. It’s so normal for her to be nice but we appreciate it so much for every little thing she does because she never has to be perfect for everybody, it’s just in her nature.  I can look at this photo forever and remember exactly what happened and remember it actually did happen, it wasn’t a dream. My year had been made thanks to her and usually she makes it anyway. I want to praise her much more but can’t because it would take way too long 🙂


Simo practiced later in the day and I tried the exact same thing but there were much more people so I didn’t say it because it wouldn’t feel like the right moment. I got the picture I wanted most signed though by her and that was her gift to me 🙂 I received two perfect birthday presents.


Last but not least about this day, I want to say thank you again to every single person who wished me a happy birthday it means a lot. I am lucky to be a part of such great fandoms and not just for Kvitty and Simo but everyone else on tennis twitter that I’ve gotten to know. You make it all more exciting for me and I’m thankful there are people who are so kind enough to say nice things to me and I always want to do the same for you when I get the chance. Much love to all of you 🙂

It was kind of a surreal feeling once we got to the second week because pretty much every event is only a week long besides slams and these in March. Plus, the longest I ever stayed at a tournament was five days so when I woke up on the second Monday it was quite a feeling to have another week of tennis left. Not all of my faves were still there but more tennis is never a bad thing. I have to say it was a bit tougher walking around the grounds once Petra was no longer there but I knew this wasn’t her best event and she might not be there long. The week I had with her was everything I could ever wanted.

The hardest day of the week for me besides my last day of the trip was the day after Simo lost and I had no more faves left. In fairness, I was happy with nine days with them and I can’t say I totally expected that many so I was satisfied. However, it stung walking around the grounds without any of them to look forward to. They make every event even better and it was just kind of an empty feeling. Also by this point all of the practice courts were pretty much empty most of the day and that was depressing too. When you know the end is near… but at least there was still great tennis to be played for those that were left!

The last part I want to share with you is my last day which was the day of the women’s final. I had never been to a final before so I thought it would be cool to try it once even probably knowing that neither of my faves were going to be in it. I’m an optimistic person yes but with their form not quite where it needs to be yet, it was hard to expect it. I didn’t care because I knew it’d be fun either way. The only weird thing was there was a possibility that my drive there could be longer than the actual final and I think the final was only a few minutes longer. Knowing who was in it and how the two players were playing, the result never surprised me as Vika was on a mission and wasn’t going to let Sveta get another upset. It was clear from the beginning she would win in straights as most could expect. She gave a nice speech after she won and I congratulate her for a spectacular month of March. Her matches against Garbine and Angie were the best ones I saw here so I’m glad she was able to play well throughout this event.

Then, the saddest part of the whole trip was leaving Crandon Park for the last time and knowing I wouldn’t be back for a whole year and that’s a maybe. Still, the memories that were created for me during these two weeks were unforgettable. I had a brilliant run here and I knew it would end eventually no matter I didn’t want it to. I lived the dream. That’s as best as I can say. I saw the top players in the world play and my favorite people right in front of my eyes as I dream every day. I only hope other fans can experience something like this because you all deserve it. I thank all of my friends on twitter who experienced this ride through me and all of my favorites who gave me things so hard to imagine. It wasn’t all about the results, you just have to hope for the best in that regard. Seeing their personalities up close and their friendliness is what mattered most. I got it all.

Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed and hope you all get to experience your favorites in the near future and enjoy them like I did!

Let The Hype Begin!! Every Single Thing I Want You to Know About Kvitalep Part III

Czech Republic vs Romania. We had the dream come true. But then we received a massive scare when Simo decided to skip it for surgery. That’s when I figured we would never get this matchup again because if we couldn’t get it in something this perfectly aligned… when could we??  A few days later however, in a pleasantly shocking decision she decided to postpone that surgery to play in this fed cup tie. So now we can confirm it. Finally. This is an article I’ve been wanting to write for a very long time. If you know me you would know by now that my life in the tennis fandom world revolves around Kvitty and Simo. That’s what I call them just about all of the time you know so I’m sticking with it here. Ever since mid-2014 when I became a full time #HalepBand member I’ve wished to see these two play each other at every tournament to witness as much cuteness and beautiful tennis on court at one time. Of course, that’s not possible every week but I never thought it would take nearly two years for them to meet again after their last meeting which was in May 2014 in the Madrid Semifinals. More about that a bit later.

Anyway, this article is intended to be about their relationship, their previous matches against each other, missed chances of more matches, a preview of this upcoming match, what I hope to see, who I intend to cheer for and how I will do it, and anything else I can think of. We have a whole week to hype this up! Let’s have some fun!!


It all started at the 2014 WTA Finals in Singapore where they both qualified, including Simo for the first time in her career. This is the top players’ best chance to hang out with each other every year and apparently these two hit it off. In the following year, the first event of the year in Shenzhen they were the only two top 10 players that played and were heavily featured together in the off court activities. Oh the fun I had during that week. You had to figure it blossomed even more during that time together and the season had just begun. In Melbourne a few weeks after this I remember Simo was asked the question about friends on the tour and Kvitty was the first name she mentioned as a new friend. That’s the first time I heard her say that. (Search Simona Halep Fan Chat AO 2015 to find it) You can see her answer one of my questions too! Simo is continuously asked this question and pretty much always gives the same answer. Also Petra was asked this question too before Shenzhen even started and responded with a quality answer as well. 


There have been other gatherings at player parties where they are spotted next to each other and it always leads me to believe they very much enjoy each other’s company. The last thing I have to say about this that I don’t know if everybody knew but in an exclusive Romanian interview with Simo recently, Simo mentioned in Singapore this past year that she told Kvitty that she looked ‘sexy’ in a dress she was wearing. Kvitty responded with “I know, I’m going out to the club later” They laughed a lot about this and this an example of the part of the friendship that I think happens behind the scenes that we’ll never know about it (besides this) but it’s a strong bond I can tell. The good times together will be back again this week stay tuned!

Previous Meetings

Not a ton to look back on sadly but the two we got were very interesting. The first one came back in 2013 in the New Haven Final. It brings up one of my weirdest and funny memories that I have to share again for those who might not have known.

At this point in time I had been a hardcore Kvitty fan and this was the first time I kid you not that I had heard of the girl now known to me as Super Simo. I knew she was on a hot streak winning lots of events and then beat Wozniacki to make the final here. I still figured how much harm could she possibly inflict on the great queen Petra? This was Petra’s home and a place where she didn’t lose, so I could expect a win against this unknown girl right? Wrong. Very very wrong. Kvitty had her chances early to break and take a lead but didn’t and from there the wheels fell off. It’s like she put all of her energy into breaking that game and when couldn’t, she kind of shut it down after realizing how well Simo could fight off her power. I’m not gonna go into heavy details for either match but watch the highlights if you can for this one and the one point I want to point out is the second break point for Kvitty at 2-1 30-40. A fab point that ends with a passing winner from Simo. A perfect example of the kind of points these two play.

It ended with a routine 6-2 6-2 win for Simo and it lead to the beginning of my extreme hatred of Simo. Seeing the only person I adored as much as Kvitty get blasted this easily in a final was tough for me to take and I didn’t handle it well. I wanted nothing to do with Simo and it was a phase I heavily regret these days. At least I got over it very well as you can see! At least we have this glorious pic that I wish I could have cherished more back in the day!

Generated by IJG JPEG Library

Their next matchup in Madrid was much better than the first one as it went the distance and they both brought the goods. I had a much different perspective watching this one as well compared to the first because at this point Simo had really grown on me and jumped into second in line behind Petra as players I really supported. I wasn’t as hardcore with her yet as I am now but it was still hard to root against her. It was the only match Simo ever won as a fan where I was disappointed. Weird feeling. Petra really should’ve won this match up a set and a break but she let Simo hang around and Simo used that fuel to steal the 2nd set and cruise through the third. Still, it’s a match I love watching and more of what I hope to see in this upcoming match.

Missed Chances

Last year there were a lot of times where I thought a certain event they had a great chance of meeting but never did. Three tournaments though we were one win away from it happening and of course each time it failed. You can also count the 2014 and 2015 WTA Finals as missed chances for a guaranteed match.

The first one came in Shenzhen the very first event of the year where they were the one and two seeds and really no other competition it seemed to meet in the final. However, after Simo made the final in the first SF, Kvitty would crumble in the second SF against Timea Bacsinszky to crush the dream. The second came in Rome where they were lined up to meet up in the SFs and Simo made it there and all Kvitty had to do was beat CSN and couldn’t of course because that’s one of her toughest opponents to beat these days. Finally, at the US Open they both made the QFs and I guess technically we weren’t a match away exactly since Petra lost first, but Simo did win next and we would’ve had it had Petra beat Pennetta. The day they meet that late in a slam is the day I lose my mind. Not sure I’ll want it as bad as I do now if it happens.


Now that all of the background is out of the way I can finally move forward and discuss the current match coming up this weekend. It’s very hard to know what kind of match we’ll get considering both are not at 100% form yet it would seem and neither has started their year well at all. This a very intriguing matchup with both players having two very contrasting styles and it makes for fun tennis in my opinion. Kvitty likes to crush the ball and go for lines and not as much defending. She can also have a very strong net game when she feels like coming in. Simo will make players extend points which makes it harder for power players to make fewer errors, and she does that by defending very well with her fantastic speed. It’ll be crucial for Kvitty to be accurate and end the points early otherwise Simo can force her to make more errors in longer rallies. I think Petra should try more dropshots and make Simo come to the net which is easily the weakest part of her game. Also big returns will be necessary to attack a serve that is weaker than her own. This will be a tremendous setting in Romania where the crowd will be fully behind Simo and it doesn’t mean Kvitty will be holding anything back. You can bet this will be a big match in deciding the tie and perhaps won’t go until Sunday. All I’m saying is get your popcorn ready for some fireworks.

I’m asked every so often who do I cheer for in a situation like this and I really like that question because it shows it’s hard to tell who I am more lenient towards because I love them both almost equally the same. I pride myself in that because I put in the effort, I give it my all to make sure I never miss either of them play a match, and I try to make it seem like I would never let them down as a fan. These two make it easy to love them and it’s extremely hard to pick against either. For some people with multiple faves it may be easier to tell who they are more devoted to and that’s fine, everyone has their own feelings and I love that. I just want to make it clear that this isn’t as easy for me as you might think. All of that being said, it always has been and always will be my first love Petra who I support in a time like this. I have never seen myself rooting against her no matter what. I made that promise since day one. Petra molded me into the tennis fan I am today. The first girl to play tennis I ever saw that was so kind and genuine and pure off court and such a talented player on court. Even in the worst of times I could see her best; she made me keep believing over and over again that when things don’t go right, brighter days are always ahead. She helped me find wonderful people all over the world that I didn’t know existed with the same passion for her that I have. I couldn’t thank her enough for what she’s helped me with since I became her fan and she’ll never know it but that’s ok. Everyone usually knows who their top favorite is through thick and thin and I don’t like to choose on the spot but if I have to like now I will. When I am watching a fave I’m not a person who can just say I’m rooting only for a good match. There has to be a purpose and that is to see them win.

However, that doesn’t take anything at all away from Simo. It will be so tough for me to not get the same happy feeling I get after each point, game, and set she wins. I like to think of this matchup as not rooting against Simo, but rooting for Petra. That’s basically how I think during every match with my faves. I don’t root against, I root for. I may not want Simo to beat Kvitty but it doesn’t mean I’ll like her any less if she does. Just don’t expect me to be as fired up how I usually am after a win. It’s another match and I’ll clap her good shots, smile at her cuteness, and appreciate the fact she’ll give it her all for her country. I’ll do the same for Kvitty besides the fact I hope she is the one on top at the end. I am also mainly rooting for a good handshake at the end and I can believe we’ll get our best one of the three meetings this time because of how close they’ve gotten. It’ll be tough to see one lose but in a time like this of course it has to happen.

I hope #HalepBand doesn’t take anything the wrong way when I cheer for Kvitty in this match. I am almost certain they won’t but I’ve never seen this match as a true member of #HalepBand so I still wonder. You guys know it’s just for a match and seeing her play tennis is enough for me to be happy win or lose. Plus it’s just a first round fed cup tie. There will be much harder matches to stress over than this one in the future. I’m gonna try to make it as fun as possible during the match and I look forward to both fanbases tweeting at the same time! Something I really am curious about and excited to see how it will turn out. I’m sure I can expect a great day due to both fanbases being amazing.

Thanks for reading if you did the whole thing. It’s been nearly two years and believe me it has felt much longer than that. Since we have a week to enjoy the buildup, I thought it was fitting to write this and pour out my feelings for these two and hopefully answer any questions about it you may have had. Good luck to both and may the best girl win!

If you want, you can share your prediction of who you think will win in the comments section below or reply on twitter. I am interested to know what your thoughts are!

Brought back for 2016: Writing about Kvitty and Simo’s Matches

Hello all! I wanted to share with you the news if anyone cared that I am bringing back something I really missed last year. Recapping every match that Petra plays at least that I can see, and new for this year is doing the same for Simo. I have a feeling most of you never knew I did this in the past but I started doing this when I first became a fan of Petra in 2013 and I thought it turned out great. I still have both articles I wrote about every match she played in 2013 and 2014 before taking 2015 off. If anyone wants to see those I can gladly show you; 2013 was like 19 pages and 2014 was almost 40 so yeah there definitely was a lot of work put into it, but I really enjoyed doing it as I like to write.

This year I will try to do the same, and I’m not saying that you have to read any of the recaps, it’s just I have never shared it in a blog form match my match so I thought since some like how I write I would open it to you to see if you enjoy it or not. If it’s too long for you it’s quite alright because I will still do it anyway because I do a lot of this for myself because I love looking back at all of Petra’s matches and the reactions I felt years ago. I didn’t remember a lot of the stuff I wrote and felt until I read those again and it was neat to see. That’s what I hope to accomplish this year as well to try and remember the 2016 matches in 2017, 2018, etc. Also if you guys can’t remember a specific match maybe it will help you as well, if you like the written version to go along with the highlights which I know a lot prefer but that’s ok.

Some of the features that I hope to include in every recap are best/most clutch points, point of the match, photos, maybe twitter moments from fans and such; who knows exactly where this will take me. There can always be room for additional things with every passing match and hopefully if it goes well enough from your side there can be some nice feedback, but like I said even if it isn’t a huge hit with others I’d like to keep doing it to help me remember. This isn’t something I will bombard you with like ‘read this, read this’ it’s a one-time post and if you don’t read it fine, it will always be there if you change your mind.

So that’s basically it, I will try to get these out close to after the matches are over otherwise whenever I have free time. I can’t guarantee I’ll be able to watch and recap every single match but I try very hard to work around things to be able to see them play, or I record them for later if I can’t see them. So that being said I hope one way or the other I’ll have enough info to write about them.

I don’t know if anyone else is doing anything similar to this because I know there are a lot of tennis fans out there with blogs and that’s great because there are a lot of good writers out there. I just wanted to do something I love which is write about my two favorite players and their 2016 journeys so come along and follow it if you like! Can’t wait to get this season rolling!


#PojdPetra #HaiSimo


Recapping the Wild Ride of the 2015 Slams: Featuring Rog, Kvitty and Simo

It really is amazing how fast the tennis season always goes, and yet again here we are looking at the tail end of it as all four slams have now been completed. I thought it might be fun to recap the highs and lows I experienced with my faves during the slams, and a little preview of what 2016 might hold. Hope you enjoy!

Roger Federer

The king finished with the best year at the slams out of my faves I would say as he made an RG QF and two finals at Wimbledon and U.S. Open sadly losing both to Novak. However, it doesn’t take away anything from an amazing season he had as he continues to defy the odds and compete at such an extraordinary level despite his age and no doubt seems to be primed to get more chances next year.

Favorite match: Defeating Andy Murray in the Wimbledon SFs. This is the one match of his career these days where he might not get the most crowd support. Against the UK’s own Andy Murray. I knew the match would be electric and a very tough one and Fed just silenced all doubters he had with brilliant tennis to not even let Andy into this match. He won all the key points and failed to let this one go into a tiebreaker as I if I remember correctly he broke all three sets to win them. It’s always a glorious feeling to see him get another chance in a grand slam final to try for the elusive 18th.

Proudest moment: Getting to his second grand slam final at the U.S. Open as he hadn’t been there in six years and again he played brilliant tennis to get there by not dropping a set. Unfortunately it had to be against Novak again, and he failed to take the many chances he had in that match en route to losing but still, I couldn’t have been more proud to see him reach two slam finals in an age where people are still doubting him. I’m sure the doubters fueled his fire, but he doesn’t need them as he’s got all the supporters he could ever want as you could tell if you watched the final. Keep slaying.

Most disappointing moment: Not a hard choice here as he opened his grand slam year losing to Andreeas Seppi in a heartbreaker in the third round at the Australian Open. This is where the haters came out and wondered if his chances were gone because this is another slam that he is usually strong at as he had made 11 straight SF appearances here before this loss. Seppi played out of his mind though and sometimes there’s nothing you can do. His shot on match point to clinch the victory proved it as it was an insane passing shot that I just stared in disbelief after it all unfolded. It sucked a lot because this is my favorite slam and I always believe in great things here. Oh well, he made up for it later in the year and I’m sure next year will be back to normal.

Favorite outfit: His night outfit at the U.S. Open! White and hot pink.

Grade for 2015 slams: A-. Sure he had a hiccup in one and lost two finals but the fact that he got there was amazing and I’m satisfied with this year despite not having a trophy. I’m just happy to see him playing so well year after year.

Predictions for 2016 slams: If he plays anything close to the level he showed this year, I can see him winning his 18th. Wimbledon always has to be the best chance so I’ll say he’ll win that. I’ll predict an AO final, RG SF, and USO final at the other slams. That is another dream year and I hope I’m not too greedy! Just my thoughts though, I’d be happy with something similar to this year, but please try to win one! No pressure.

Petra Kvitova

Favorite match: Wimbledon Round 1 vs Kiki Bertens. Regardless of how this tournament turned out, this was a very cool moment as she destroyed Bertens in only 36 minutes. That’s pretty ridiculous and it barely gave us enough time to get our teeth into the match. If only she could win every match like that, we’d be the calmest fans in the world. However, we are exactly the opposite of that with her, but at least we had this fun moment to enjoy.

Proudest moment: Defeating Johanna Konta to reach her first USO QFs. I think it’s safe to say a lot of us were a bit surprised she made it this far especially with her mono and all, and then she goes ahead and scores this big win to continue the amazing journey. Her reaction was priceless as it wasn’t one you might see in an average straight sets win in R16 but one you could tell how much it meant to her to achieve something new in her career after all these years. It’s kind of like at New Haven when she said “When a win is more than a win” It felt like that here too. I couldn’t have been more proud despite her next match because we had already gotten something new and maybe unexpected. It also gave us hope for the upcoming years here that anything is possible.

Most disappointing moment: Another very easy choice as it had to be losing to Jelena Jankovic in the third round of Wimbledon. She came into this as the defending champion of course and seemed poised to be another huge threat to defend her title, but it wasn’t meant to be. It hurt even more as she cruised through the first set and a half, up a break in the second, but everything fell apart after that, and we were soon left crushed. No doubt it had to really hurt for her too as this is easily her favorite tournament in the world and she is always used to being here at least through the QFs. There were a bunch of depressing photos after this one and all of us felt very bad because of how much it means; just a sad sight overall. However, it’s just one bad year and I think she has a great chance to lift up the trophy again next year!

Favorite outfit: Her night outfit at the U.S. Open. Back in black!

Grade for 2015 slams: B- It was a bit of bumpy road for Kvitty this year as it always is but still there were some huge positives to take out of this year. She made the third round at the AO for the first time since 2012, the second week at RG for the first time since 2012 as well, and made her first career QF at the U.S. Open. So if anything, it gives us some extra hope for those events for next year where we usually might not expect much. I’m sure a lot of us will take what we got besides the Wimbledon result.

Predictions for 2016 slams: It’s basically throwing darts when it comes to predicting anything with Petra, but I’ll try. I think the second week is doable for AO, I still feel RG isn’t quite where it needs to be and could see another R3 but we’ll see. Think she’ll win Wimbledon again barring any health concerns, and a SF in New York to complete the SF slam!

on day one of the 2015 French Open at Roland Garros on May 24, 2015 in Paris, France.
on day one of the 2015 French Open at Roland Garros on May 24, 2015 in Paris, France.

Simona Halep

Favorite match: Defeating Victoria Azarenka at the U.S. Open. This was such a good match and I couldn’t help but see over and over again before this tournament and match started that Vika was the favorite to overtake Serena. It was nice to see Simo prove everyone wrong and say not so fast and pull off this huge win, especially after her huge grind against Lisicki the match before. Her reactions to winning this one were unforgettable and it was amazing to see the passion and excitement she had after this one after making her first U.S. Open SF. Sure it abruptly ended the match after but this was a fun journey with great memories and she’ll be back next year ready to get another chance at a trophy.

Proudest moment: Same as favorite match. Just the fact she was able to come through all adversity against her to survive this one. This was the happiest I was after one of her slam matches this year, so fun to watch and I won’t forget it anytime soon

Most disappointing moment: Unfortunately Simo’s slam season wasn’t too great and there were a lot of these. I’ll pick the RG loss because it was crushing to see it end like that so early after reaching the final last year. I had very high hopes she could make it again but she ran into the same force that knocked her out in New York last year in Lucic-Baroni. It’s a player we don’t want to see in future grand slams please. I still think she could’ve went very deep in RG had that not been her opponent because it seems there’s a bit of a mental block against her now but we’ll never know. This was identical to Petra’s loss at Wimbledon because this is Simo’s favorite event and she surely had to be pretty hurt after this one. Like we always say though, next year super Simo will be back and ready to make the final again and perhaps win it!

Favorite outfit: The black one at RG and I thought her visor with the flower in it was the coolest thing ever! Black suits her well and wished we could’ve seen it longer!

Grade for 2015 slams: D. This is a pretty bad grade but it fits. She made the QFs in AO yes but played one of her worst matches of the season there as she even admits she didn’t fight and doesn’t know why. At least in the other losses she tried to fight harder. RG was ugly and Wimbledon was uglier; no comment. At least we had the joy of her big run in USO to salvage the grand slam season. There is no doubt in my mind however that next year won’t be anything like this.

Predictions for 2016 slams: I’m thinking she’ll make the SFs in Australia and her loss will be a hard fought this time. It’s hard to quite know what to expect in the summer but I believe it’s destiny for Simo to win her first GS at RG so I’ll predict her to win that. I think a Wimbledon QF would be a good expectation as it’s not like she isn’t a good grass court player; there’s potential there. I think she’ll win the USO too! Two slams for Simo woah I should settle down! You can yell jinx at me but I know y’all would love this too!