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Tennis' Band Of Brothers

March 26, 2009 10:43 AM
The Slonac family minus one

By J. Fred Sidhu

Indian Wells, Ca. – When it comes to playing tennis, the Slonac family of Milwaukee does it together.

During the 2008 USTA League presented by Chrysler 5.0 Adult National Championships at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, three of the five Slonac brothers played for the Midwest Section team.

David, 38, Glen, 45, and Jim, 37, gave it their best shot, but the tennis band of brothers and their team fell just short of advancing to Sunday’s finals.

Afterwards, the brothers spoke how the sport of tennis has played an instrumental part in keeping their Midwestern family together.

“Our family has always been close, so we always have someone to play with” said David. “It (tennis) does keep our family together. We’ve played together in Nationals and we plan to keep playing.”

Glen had the same sentiment. “It’s a great way to keep in contact with everybody. Our kids are starting to play, which is nice. It’s a whole family thing with everyone getting involved. It’s a lifelong sport.

A fourth brother, Kevin, would have played on the same team at the Nationals this weekend, but was sidelined due to an arm injury.

All of the brothers began playing tennis when they were kids and according to their parents, who came to watch their sons in Indian Wells, the boys were self-taught and picked up the sport hitting balls against a garage door.

The brothers have always been close when it comes to tennis as they recalled that Glen had coached David and Jim when they were in high school. The sons also spoke about being able to play doubles with their father.

Their father, Evan, 77, was beaming when asked his thoughts about his sons.

“I play every point with them,” he said. “We always try to give them support. It’s kept the family together and it just continues the time we can be together.”

The elder Slonac spoke how proud he was of Jim, who was going to Turkey in late October to represent the United States in the Italia Cup, an ITF senior men’s event.

A fifth Slonac brother, Brian, 49, also plays tennis, but was not in attendance at this tournament.

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