shahar peer backhand 311.
(photo credit: AP)
As disappointing as Shahar Pe’er’s second round Wimbledon exit was, it did at
least reveal a newly acquired quality which can explain much of her recent
Pe’er has never shied away from hard work to improve her game,
but for all the time she spends on the training court there was one trait that
had escaped her until recently.
Maturity cannot be taught or worked on.
It is an attribute which arrives with time, and that time has come for
It was not that long ago that the 23-year-old was described by
some journalists as childish and spoiled. Pe’er used to go through a long
sulking process after defeats as painful as Wednesday’s loss to Angelique
Kerber, but no more.
Don’t get me wrong. Pe’er was extremely disappointed
after her surprising second round defeat.
You don’t become a successful
professional athlete if you don’t detest losing. However, Pe’er has now learned
to become a better player from her defeats, rather than wallowing in them and
allowing them to drag her down.
“This is how it goes in tennis,” Pe’er
told me after her second round exit. “I’ll get over this defeat by
day you win and one day you lose. You have to accept it. You must move
not turn every defeat into a tragedy.”
Pe’er was quick to accept that she
can learn from an encounter she would previously do her best to forget
“I need to be more dominant on my serve on grass and play more
aggressively,” she said. “I need to take my chances because that makes
difference between a win and a loss.”
Pe’er may have made a mess of her
match on Wednesday, but her early exit will have no implications on the
her year. If anything, it will make her a better player – something we
say about her just a couple of years ago.