It’s August. 6am in the morning in Naples, Florida. Alarms start to go off in the players’ dorms. Sleepy faces emerge, excited about starting a new day of their new life at the Academy. There’s lots of emotions, worries and news… They are also excited about this new stage of their lives. A stage which, for almost every athlete at the Sanchez-Casal Academy, is hugely influential on their development as a person.
At Sánchez-Casal Academy, we believe that communication is the image and the nuance of each person, who, with mere silence or just a look, sends a message or reveals a simple intention. But who teaches us to communicate better in our daily interactions, and in our personal and professional life?
It’s been 18 years since we founded the Sanchez-Casal Academy in Barcelona, and 4 since we opened our academy in the US. Our mission is very clear: to provide opportunities in both tennis and education. We have helped lots of students to go through college placement process and take advantage of the fantastic education system provided by the USA, which allows players that love a sport to practice it and attend college at the same time. In Spain and the rest of Europe, those possibilities quickly vanish. If you want to succeed in tennis or any other sport, you won’t find any infrastructure or competition.
The month of November has been a special time here at Academia Sanchez-Casal. First, we had our alum Andy Murray capture the number one spot in the ATP rankings and later during the National Letter of Intent (NLI) signing period we had six student-athletes formalize their commitments to some of Division I’s top academic and athletic schools: River Hart- University of Minnesota, Victoria Emma- University of Florida, Edson Ortiz Tovar- University of Alabama, Zummy Bauer- Georgia Tech, Tristan McCormick- Notre Dame, Fletcher Scott- University of Illinois. For these high school students, this event marked an important milestone and sets them on a path to continue their tennis careers while also earning a quality education.
Sport is fair. Life should be fair as well. We may make mistakes, but if we persist, a new opportunity will come along. It will always end up appearing. But you should be prepared, working, looking forwards with confidence but not in a rush.
At Sánchez-Casal Academy we have been using tennis and education as a vehicle for the personal development of our young players for almost 20 years. We are extremely proud of all who have trained and studied with us. One of those is Mike Vermeer, who has graduated Cum Laude from Columbia University.
Tennis is an individual sport. However all the preparation, the travel, etc. is normally done in a team, the team who stands by you in both the best and worst of times – or at least that’s how Emilio Sánchez Vicario has experienced it.
The Magic Wimbledon is here. We’ll enjoy with one of the most demanding tournament. Every player dreams to play well there. Murray is the Emilio Sánchez Vicario’s favourite player for this year. He’s going to be the one to beat.
This year’s Roland Garros 2016 has been very special for the Sánchez-Casal Academy, full of emotion, friendship and stories about the academy on Parisian soil. Daniel Muñoz, Head of Communications and Media at the academy, tells us the tale.