September 28, 2018
Exhausted from the day before, we woke up at 9:30 and took the elevator to breakfast. It was a huge buffet with every type of food you could imagine. As I was getting some pancakes (which I was very happy about) I looked to my right and saw sushi! Overwhelmed with all the food, I got way to excited and filled up 3 plates. Once we ate, we got a cab to transfer us to the player hotel in order to pick up the credentials. At this moment I was thrilled because this was going to be my first time having access to the player area, and more, the player restaurant!
Matt, my dad, and I watched Mu Tao from China advance to the finals of a Grade 2 ITF (he later won the tournament!). My dad and I knew Mu Tao from Florida so we sat and chatted with his father. The next match we saw was a 14 year old girl from China (she also advanced to the finals of the tournament and later won it as well). I began to become hungry so we walked downstairs and entered the player restaurant. Wow. As I was getting some pasta, Jack Sock casually walks right by me and stops to get pasta as well, OMGGGGG!!!!! I was internally freaking out because when I glanced to my right I saw Caroline Wozniacki, ummm whatttt?!??! Oh and when I was eating, I looked up and saw Nick Kyrgios three tables away. At this point I was about to pass out. My hands were trembling, I was so awestruck being in a room with all these players. By the way, the food was fantastic! On the way out, we accidentally bumped into Naomi Osaka, SHE JUST WON THE U.S. OPEN IN SEPTEMBER!!
Back outside, it was pouring rain so my dad and I stayed inside and walked around some more. We found a comfy seat and I apparently slept for an 1.5 hrs? Anyways, when I woke up, the courts were dry so we went to watch Diyas play some girl with a WEIRD forehand, Nicolescu. The whole first set she didn’t hit a single one with topspin, all slice. And it wasn’t a normal slice, it was eccentric. Seconds into the set break, it rained again. So we walked back inside and sat down and I fell asleep again, haha. When I woke up this time, we went back outside and watched the remainder of the match concluding in Diays’ victory. And guess what, it started to rain again! By this time we didn’t have time run back into the building so we stood under the stadium. A news reporter from China walks up and asked if I was a player. My dad sneered for me letting him know that I was 13 and hoped to be playing the juniors within the next couple years. Well, he didn’t care because he kept asking me questions about where I was from and what tournaments I play. Once the rain stopped we said goodbye and left. We found our way into the stadium where the roof was closed and watched a qualifying match; apparently it was very interesting according to my dad (see picture). LOL.