Melanie South - Great Britain Tennis Player

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Croatia and Injured

It happened the day before I was due to leave for Croatia, for three weeks. I had to stop my practice session early because my left knee was really hurting. I straight away put ice on it, to reduce any inflamation and went to the physio to get an appointment for later that day to see if I could still go to Croatia. The physio told me that if I was not due to go away I would be having treatment and resting but as soon as she had not said that it was vital not to go I knew that I would be going.

In Croatia my knee was not good. I rested as much as possible but had to practice if I wanted to be ready to play my tournament. Ice and inflamation tablets were a daily chore. The first week I got to the final round of qualifying and had a tough match losing to DeWinnie in 3 sets in the final round. I had to sit around for the next two days to see if I would get a lucky loser place but I was unfortunate not to.

The second week I was not confident at all. My knee had been quite sore; I was not training much and was unable to do my normal fitness routine. I lost my match to a German girl in 3 sets, it was not a pleasant match.

The final week I had to play the same girl in the second match and got my revenge in another unpleasant 3 set match. After playing this match - that lasted 3 hours - I only had an hours break before my next round in which I had to play Mezac. I knew I would have to be fresh, confident and not injured to have a good match with her. She played extremely well and that was the end of my three tournaments. I had played doubles with Anna White, we did well but had tough draws so were unfortunate not to gain any points.

Overall it was a very frustrating trip as I was unable to compete at my best due to my injury.

The week after I got back my coach had a chat with me and said there was no point in trying to play the next few tournaments if my knee was still hurting. I stopped playing and saw a physio. At first we did not know what was wrong with it so I was sent to London to have an ultra sound diagnosis machine take pictures of it. I was told that I had a plica and that treatment was to rest it. I had had three and a half weeks off playing, only able to do upper body weights. In this time I was able to go back to school for two weeks. This is the only two weeks I have been there this year.

Last week I took my AS Level exams for General Studies, Psychology and Physical Education so fingers crossed for my results in August! I then started to play again and increase the intensity for a week but my knee started to hurt again so I am going to see a specialist soon.

I will keep you all posted on when I am back playing matches.

Mel xx

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