ALL ABOUT TENNIS JUNIOR PROFILE
April 18, 2017
Albuquerque-area junior player Georgio Samaha is our latest Southwest junior to be profiled in our All About Tennis series.
Samaha, who just recently turned 13, is currently the sixth-ranked player in Boys’ 14s. Two years ago, Samaha captured the Boys’ 12s singles and doubles title at the Junior Closed in Tucson. Samaha and younger brother Elias are regulars in the latter stages of tournaments across the Southwest, and often compete together in doubles, even despite their almost two-year age gap. The two regularly train at Lobo Club Tennis Academy on the University of New Mexico campus.
For the last three years, Georgio, who was born in Albuquerque, but whose parents are of Lebanese descent, has competed in annual summer tournaments run by the Lebanese Tennis Federation, to help give him some international experience to further supplement his already steady participation in local, section and national events here in the United States.
A month ago, Samaha was invited to participate for Lebanon in an ITF World Junior Tennis Asia Ocean Qualifying Tournament for Lebanon, in a Davis Cup style tie format in Banghok, Thailand. ADVERTISEMENT There Samaha got to compete against other 14 and under players from China, Uzbekistan, Indonesia, and New Zealand, going 4-4 in this tough international field in both singles and doubles.
We recently caught up with Georgio to see how he was doing and learn a bit more about him.
USTASW: So how did you get started in tennis?
GS: I started to play casually with my dad at about six or seven years old.
USTASW: What has been your best tournament experience since you began competing?
GS: My best tournament experience was in a sweet 16 tournament in El Paso, TX. I won the tournament in Sep 2013 for under 12.
USTASW: What was your very first USTA tournament? How old were you?
GS: The first tournament was in Rio Rancho, NM (The Ranches Junior Open L6). I was 9 years old, played under 10, and got to the final against my brother Elias. That was pretty cool.
USTASW: What would you say is your ultimate goal with tennis?
GS: My goal is to become a professional tennis player one day.
USTASW: What do you most like to do when you're not playing tennis?
GS: I like to watch tennis on TV, and just hanging out with friends and family.
USTASW: Who is your favorite tennis professional? What would you do if you were to meet them?
GS: Andy Murray is my favorite player. If I were to ever meet him, I would ask him to give some tips how to become pro, and ask him if he can give me some lessons.
USTASW: How often do you play tennis each week and what do you do to try to keep your practices fun?
GS: I practice tennis about 4 days a week (2.5 hours a day) and we go to a lot of tournaments during weekends. I sometimes play trick shots, or Mini Tennis, and just by playing tennis, I have fun.
USTASW: Who or what has been your biggest role model or help in learning tennis?
GS: My dad. He has been with us throughout the whole journey.
USTASW: What's been your best or favorite tennis moment so far in your young career?
GS: My favorite moment was in June 2015 in the L3 Southwest closed tournament when I won the championship in both singles and doubles.
USTASW: Do you have any odd quirks or rituals on the court, like bouncing a ball five times before a serve or not walking on the lines?
GS: I sometimes just walk on the baseline.
GEORGIO SAMAHA FILE
- 13 Years old
- No. 6 ranked junior in Southwest Boys 14s
- 2015 USTA Southwest Junior Closed Boys' 12s singles and doubles champion
- Has played just over 500 junior matches in his career already
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