Almost three years ago Monica Puig shook the tennis world.
Wins against Kvitova, Kerber and Muguruza just to name a few put her on one of the highest pedastools in sport as she won an Olympic Gold Medal in singles.
Monica became the first Puerto Rican to win an Olympic Medal.
This is a story I will never forget, it is honestly one of my favourite sporting memories. I remember I was watching the final on my phone in the car on my way home from work.
Since then it hasn’t been plain sailing for the 25 year old.
Backing up a big win is the toughest challenge in this sport, before you know it everyone knows your name.
Monica is from Puerto Rico which was hit by a Hurricane just over 12 months ago which left devastation across the Island with over 3000 people losing their lives and many more affected by this disaster.
Monica helped raise money to help people start their lives again, she was also accompanied by Maria Sharapova to the Island to help with the efforts.
I think in sport the word ‘inspiration’ gets thrown around too much however I do believe that anything can inspire you. Miguel Lozada said that when Puig did what she did in Rio his phone went made everyone wanted to try tennis and be like Monica Puig and that’s what it is about.
She gave a country something they’ve never had before, the history she wrote and the feeling she gave millions all over the world will always be remembered and the efforts she went to give back to her country shows how down to earth she is.
On the court it has been tricky, her ranking has taken a hit and consistency just hasn’t been there.
Monica is that type of player that on her she can hit anyone off the baseline, the shots she can come up with especially off both wings is truly exceptional. The trick now is just channelling it.
I think it is incredible smart to have hired Kamau Murray as her coach. Kamau was a big part of Sloane Stephens success in New York and making the final at Roland Garros. I think that what helps Monica is that her and Sloane do play a similar game on the baseline and I really hope and am looking forward to seeing how this partnership unfolds over the year and it would make my day to see Monica climb back up those rankings!