The obligation of Garbiñe Muguruza | Sports

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Whoever has read Openthe monumental masterpiece on the life and enormous work of André Agassi, written by the Pulitzer JR Moehringer, you will have read with all caution the interview with Women’s Health in which Garbiñe Muguruza, former world tennis number one, announces that he does not have the slightest desire to play tennis, that he is enjoying his family and his free time, and that when he feels the need to pick up the racket again , it will.

“Today tennis has no place in my routine or in my mind,” is Muguruza’s most striking statement. There is something else in the piece, some relevant information: he went to Barcelona at the age of seven to dedicate his life to tennis, and today he is 30. Often, the spectator of these prodigious careers is dazzled by the years in the elite of the athletes, their years of fame; Behind them is a childhood and adolescence (if they ever have it: more and more the child stops being one and becomes a professional) on a track, a field, a soccer field, an athletics track, a gym. He is not number one of something, anything, only with effort, discipline and talent; It is also for everything you are willing to sacrifice.

All of this is directly related to happiness, one of those words so big that they could be said to be forbidden. The precarious balance of someone who earns money with the condition of not having time to spend it. There are those who find that happiness in competition, there are those who have resigned themselves to finding it in that way of life and come to enjoy it, there are those who live it with passion every hour of their days in the elite. There are also those who can’t find it and don’t care, it will appear when he finishes his chosen job. There are those who suffer every day and endure because that is also success, resisting until others fall. And others simply put the racket in the bag and go eat some ice cream.

It is extraordinarily rare because in this system of ours whoever renounces money and glory is worthy of an exotic look. Despite the fact that, like Muguruza, this has already been achieved. Does someone who doesn’t care about winning or losing adulterate competition?

The most curious thing about the collapse in Muguruza’s ranking, voluntarily removed, is that her interview is a happy interview. This is not someone tormented or anxious because tennis will get back into his head, nor someone lost in life who has suddenly lost his reason for being, nor someone sad and confused because things are not working out for him and he has decided to walk away for a while. little to see if with distance they start to work again. It is precisely something that has to do with that verb: function.

What the former number one in Spanish tennis has decided is to operate in another way, one of the most luxurious that exists: however she wants. What is inferred from the interview (she dances Zumba, plays paddle tennis, goes for walks, goes to events and practices boxing) is that she wakes up every morning without any obligation, even if that obligation is to be the champion of something (or precisely because of being one). , and therefore lives without pressure. And whoever has read Open, let’s go back to the beginning, will know from the tortuous childhood and life of Agassi, a legend, that the price to pay for being one many times, for many years, for many people, is not worth it.

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