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Re: Venus Williams
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Laramie Boyd
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      She looked lethargic, out of sync, and lost in the first round of the Wimbledon tennis tournament in England. Venus Williams, an American player, insisted "I feel like I'm a great player." She went on, "I am a great player." Moreover, she said, "I'm tough, let me tell you. Tough as nails." But, she stated, "Unfortunately, I had to deal with circumstances that people don't normally have to deal with in this sport." Venus was diagnosed with Sjogren's syndrome, which causes some fatigue and joint pain. She emphasized that she's not giving up just because she had a "hard time" the first five or six freakin' tournaments back.
      We can all admire an athlete who is confident, self assured and optimistic about how they "play the game." Without such an attitude, success in sports will be hard to come by. And we've all seen athletes who have been plagued by seemingly unfair injuries, diseases, and sometimes just plain bad luck. And most of the time the athlete whose career is halted or short lived by these "circumstances", although not happy about it, will face them, be thankful for the time they were given to compete, and then move on. Casey Martin in golf, Lou Gehrig in baseball, and Bobby Orr in hockey, come to mind. These kind of athletes don't play the "blame game" and continue to rant about how great they are, or were, and speak of how fate intervened to rob them of further greatness. Even the practicing partner of Venus, David Witt, talking of how Venus is not the player she used to be, said, "It's tough to watch sometimes. I think everybody sees it. I don't know what else to say." Maybe Venus is simply trying to convince herself that her former "greatness" has not abandoned her, in spite of the way she is playing lately. Maybe in her mind she is still the player she once was. However, at this stage of her career, maybe a little humility, rather than vanity, might be in order, if she is capable of the switch.
Are Rules Made to be Broken