“It takes heart to reach your dreams.” – Melanie Oudin
Melanie Oudin started playing tennis when she was just seven years old. Her grandmother introduced her to the sport and she was hooked for life. She knew that it was the path for her and she wanted to play in the professional league. Her parents supported her dream. They homeschooled Melanie so that she could devote more time to training and practice.
Melanie started her training at the Racquel Club of the South in Norcross, Georgia. With her passion and dedication to the sport, she slowly rose to the top of the amateur rankings. Her amateur career was remarkable with 27 consecutive wins and holding the title for the International Tennis Federation Junior Circuit for four consecutive times. She finally decided to turn professional in 2008. Starting from the bottom of the professional rankings, she worked work to make her way to the qualifying rounds for Wimbledon. Her dream came true when she earned a spot in the international competition in 2009. Melanie would further impress tennis fans when she defeated the former number one seed, Jelena Jankovic. The win propelled her to the Women’s Tennis Association Top 100. In that same year, she competed at the 2009 U.S. Open where she won the hearts and admiration of tennis fans when she defeated top-seeded athletes like Elena Dementieva, Maria Sharapova, and Nadia Petrova. She was also seen wearing a pair of shoes that had the word “BELIEVE” written on them. Her fans and supporters called themselves “Believers.” And from then on, the tennis world believed that Melanie Oudin was a force to reckon with in this sport.
Unfortunately, Melanie was hounded by injuries and various health issues that led her to announce her retirement in 2017. It was a short but great run for this spectacular lady. Melanie now lives in Marietta, Georgia with her family.