By Ellen Zoe Golden Photos courtesy: Edgar Marín
A group of the best Costa Rican tennis players went to Miami Beach last month to participate in the Lucky in Love presents 2018 World Tennis Championships. The top-tier event, presented by the International Tennis Federation (ITF), welcomed 20 countries who sent players to play in three groups: 35, 40, and 45 ages.
The Ticos will compete in the 45-and-over category. Once again, Edgar Marín, the tennis pro at Mar Vista in Brasilito, heads to the World Championships.
He was joined by Kenneth Thome, Esteban Ramirez and Javier Solera. The players from this country are chosen by Costa Rica’s Tennis Federation, taking into account top players by division and their ITF rankings.
“Winning the event will be hard, but we will do our best,” Marín said before leaving.
“There are several formal ATP (the governing body of the men’s professional tennis circuits) players such as Michael Chang, who won the French Open, and Andrei Cherkasov, a former pro player from Russia. It’s the best tournament in the world for teams, and every year it’s in a different location. We have a good team and we like our chances to upset the big boys.” Marín explained that as a team, the guys played singles and doubles against another country, about eight or more groups of three.
The country that earned the most points—the top team—moved forward. Every country played three or four matches regardless of losing, but only the winners moved on. The day before the tournament, the four Ticos marched with the Costa Rican flag down Miami Beach’s Collins Avenue, among the teams from the other countries in a Parade of Nations. “I love tennis because it’s a sport you can play until you die,” Marín said.
“The sport itself is wonderful mentally and physically. I enjoy teaching the sport as well so I know how hard it is to play, but that’s why it’s so much fun. When I play, it’s all about me, so when I fail there no excuses, just me failing. It’s a learning curve, a way to deal with your emotions and fears. Tennis is a way of building character and becoming a better person.”