Lu, the optimist

R. RAGU

Yen-Hsun Lu’s (in pic) ranking has slipped to 98, but the Chinese Taipei player is not unduly worried about his dip in form. “The virus, last year, laid me low for two weeks and it took six more weeks to recover. I am confident of doing better than my career-best ranking of 55,” he said.

Ten years ago, Lu was completely shaken by the death of his father — it taught him quite a few hard lessons. Fortunately for Lu, he had the right people to guide him. “My father was everything to me. He taught me the basics of tennis, fed me balls during practice. I was seeing him day in and day out, and suddenly he disappears one day. Imagine how it’ll be?”

Prof. Yuan Tseh Lee, the Nobel Prize winner for Chemistry in 1986, not only wrote to the sponsors but also met them to impress upon them how promising a player Lu was. His stature was such that nobody refused him. “Lee helped not only me but also many good junior players. All because he loved tennis,” said Lu.

Though Lu turned professional in 2001, he lacked expert guidance and training. The famous German coach, Dirk Hordoff, took Lu under his wing in 2003 after which the player’s career began to take wing.

Compiled by K. Keerthivasan