Getting to know Laura Siegemund


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Getting to know Laura Siegemund

The introduction of tennis for some is with teenage friends joking around on a concrete court in the park, but for Laura, she was taught by her family at the age of 3, on the courts of Filderstadt, Germany. She was having little kid's fun, but had no idea that tennis would engulf her entire life the way it did.

The year she was born in Filderstadt in 1988, the tournaments WTA seeds were Navritilova, Chris Evert, Sabatini, Mary Jo Fernandez and Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario. Rightly so today, all of these ladies are still deeply embedded in the game that Laura never dreamed she'd be in as a pre-schooler.

The family was a moving one with her father Harro being an engineer and because of his job took the family to many countries of the World. Laura's mom Brigitta, sister Satu and brother Arien had experiences living in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for 3 years and Jakarta, Indonesia for a year.

They've learned French among their native languages of German and English but that never stopped Laura from loving her tennis, her idol Steffi Graf and starting her trek of playing the ITF circuit. She had entered the prestigious 2000 Orange Bowl in the girls' 12 and under category and had won.

The year 2002 was the beginning of her playing events of teh ITF and the following year she played her 1st WTA qualifying at Leipzig. A few years later, defiant and strong she won her 1st ITF doubles title and the next year she had earned 3 doubles titles.

Siegemund knew that this was her calling, her passion and she turned pro that year in 2006. Laura's doubles game with the ITF was easily formulated and despite the fact of needing to connect with another player to form a doubles unit, she was lucky enough to connect with players and in 3 years had accumulated 6 doubles titles in the ITF circuit.

She had spent her tennis life participating from ITF circuit events to WTA tournaments that she could get entry into by wild cards. By 2010, her ranking around 200, she qualified to enter in WTA, Grand Slam draws and ITF events encouraging and building her confidence in game and strategies to be a better player.

Things were going great for Laura but in the summer of 2012, she had torn both her ligaments and decided to stop playing tennis to heal and rehab, and thought it better to pick up her college books. She began to study for her bachelor's degree in psychology and acquiring her trainer's certificate, thinking of prospects to do if she could not continue tennis.

In 2013-2014, Siegemund had started working the kinks out of her singles game also and won over 4 singles titles and a few more doubles championships, even winning an event in Blarritz, France worth $100,000 prize money. By 2015 she had cracked the top 100 (ranked in the 90s) and had reached the quarters at WTA events in Florianopolis, Brazil and in Luxembourg.

This year (2016) was a blockbuster so far with Laura racking up on milestones in her career. It was the first time she was in the top 100s, the first time in a 3rd round of a Grand Slam, and the first time she was in the main draw of Indian Wells.

She proved her talents when she brought her "A" game to the Porsche Grand Prix at Stuttgart, beating top ranked ladies as Halep, Vinci and Radwanska in straight sets to move into the Final against another lady German Angelique Kerber.

Players had now seen how devious and clever her tennis strategies are and that she isn't to be taken for granted. In the first few games of the final, it seems like Laura had her foot on the gas to win out a title over Kerber, but as fatique set in for her, due to such excellent performances from the qualifying rounds up to the final, Kerber had all the answers and strategies to pull out a winner and a title on the feisty Siegemund.

Laura says of her performance admitted "I'm really tired and I know I can play much better". But Kerber was stunned at first by her strong forehands and aggressive volleys and that Laura is a threat and she'd better get to business or otherwise she'd lose the match and title.

Kerber gladly said afterwards that "It doesn't get any better. I needed a bit of time to find my rhythm and I'm happy I managed it in the end". It was great experience and a confidence booster for Laura who now knows that she has a good chance of beating nearly any player.

There are no boundaries in her game and it is exciting to see how her performance develops in the next tournament that she qualifies for to enter.