By Jhue Vern

HOW many teenage tennis players can say that they will be playing in the same tournament with the likes of Venus Williams, Jelena Dokic, Marion Bartoli, and many other international tennis stars? Well, 16-year-old Choo Lyn Yuen can.

She will be representing Malaysia in this year’s BMW Malaysian Open qualifiers alongside Javariah Noordin, 22, after emerging as the winners of the national trials.

Lyn Yuen started playing at the age of six, after being introduced to the game by her parents who are both avid tennis players themselves. She found that she enjoyed it very much, and that she was a natural at the game.

To this day, Lyn Yuen trains everyday for about three to four hours, and goes to school like a regular teenager. That means that she can’t escape from doing her homework and finishing her assignments onLaw time!

“As for curfews, it’s not really necessary for me, because by 9pm I’m usually too exhausted to do anything else but sleep.”

Apart from her tennis playing skills, the teen also seems to have a stomach made of steel.

Anybody twice her age would probably be nervous to stand where she is at every tournament – being scrutinised by everyone from the coach to her competitors to the spectators at each match.

However, Lyn Yuen, who hails from Kuching, Sarawak, says that she is unfazed by the gazes of the hundreds of spectators. “I just focus completely on the game. But hearing the applause when I win a point does give me a major confidence boost.”

In fact, so fearless is she that when asked who she would like to play against first in the upcoming BMW Malaysian Open, her immediate answer was, “Venus Williams!”. However, the player she idolises and most looks forward to meeting is Ayumi Morita, the current highest ranking Japanese tennis player in the world.

Although she says she is still not sure if she will pursue tennis as a full-time career in the future, she is excited about the coming BMW tournament and will continue to train hard.

She added: “I am very grateful to my coach, Deen Hesham, who has trained me for the last 10 years and also to the Lawn Tennis Association of Malaysia for giving me this opportunity to play in the tournament.” — By Jhue Vern


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