philosophically. "In all of this, we're talking about something, sport,
which is 99% good. I don't know anyone, as participant, spectator or bystander,
who is not touched in some way by sport. It's healthy, an emotional outlet, a
physical outlet, an entertainment, a vehicle for escape. Certainly there are
some drawbacks. Sport is overdone sometimes; many people don't have it in the
proper line of priorities. Widespread gambling is another problem. But sport
keeps people young; perhaps that is the most important thing.
"As I look
back, most everything I have is a result of sport. Oh, I know it's the toy part
of the world and I'm not significant in any worldly fashion. But a long time
ago I found this niche and it has been right for me. I've enjoyed coaching,
teaching and the relationships. It's nice to look around and see my players
become successful in different fields. I am content. I have peace of mind, and
I worry about how much I'm going to miss sport when I get out of it in the near
thought about that. "Sometimes there are down moments," she said,
"and I feel unimportant. I think, "Sport, big deal.' But what is sport
anyway? An art, an amusement. We professionals are the motivators. We are the
ones who inspire. We sell people something they have for the rest of their
lives—moments, memories—and they are better in health, mind and spirit. So I do
contribute. I give people pleasure and happiness.
first day I hit a tennis ball I knew what I wanted," she went on. "It
has made my life. Winning isn't the big deal, either. The real joy comes from
the very thing that involves people in sport in the first place—the fun of
execution, the fun of playing.
sport is an outlet, an expenditure of energy. Not everyone gets that from
reading a book or watching a movie. But also it teaches us about daily living.
Certain things don't always go our way. Sometimes we have to lose and we all
must face it. Ups and downs. Hills and valleys. That's what sport is all about.
That's what life is about, too."