On The Rise: Monica Puig
At 21 years old, WTA Rising Star Monica Puig has become the face of Latin American women’s tennis, being the only player from the 26-country region to feature in the Top 100. Born in Puerto Rico – a country better known for its baseball players than for tennis stars – Puig sits at No.51 in the rankings.
Patience is the name of Puig’s game, and it shows in everything from her style of play to her social media hashtag, #PicaPower. The tag comes from the saying “picar piedras,” which is Spanish slang for working long and hard at small tasks for small rewards. That’s been the key for her 2015 season, which has seen her reach three quarterfinals but also face five first round losses.
“It’s been a really positive season compared to last year,” Puig said. “I’m trying to stay as patient as I can, and really keep my mental game very solid.”
Puig returned to the Colombian capital of Bogotá for the Claro Open Colsanitas after three years, competing not just in singles but also in doubles with her partner Mariana Duque-Mariño, a Bogotá native. She’s found success in both competitions, making the quarterfinals in each.
The Puerto Rican isn’t letting big hitters or high altitude get in her way – she plans to continue working long and hard and to use her quarterfinal run at Bogotá as a launchpad for the rest of her season. But she won’t settle for small rewards, though. While most players will only admit to thinking one match at a time, Puig isn’t shy about her goals.
“I want to win another title, obviously that’s my main goal,” Puig said. “Being seeded at the French Open is also my short term goal. And then I want to finish the year in the Top 20 of the world.
“It’s definitely a big challenge, but know that with lots of hard work I can achieve it.”
(Article originally posted at wtatennis.com)