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A Tribute To Aranxta                                Back to the site
By Caroline Burnet (Age 18)
From the United States
Posted on March 17, 1999.

Though not having the most titles
or even the most wins-
you're the truest competitor
to ever play the game.

This is said with certainty
for greatness cannot be measured
by the number of trophies raised overhead,
but by the passion and persistence shown daily on the court.

You may lack power or pace,
but those only make winners-
it's your heart, your desire,
that makes you a champion.

You somehow run down every ball,
your legs covering numerous miles;
and though compact, you represent
an imposing force, a backboard.

Your opponent thinks they've hit a winner,
but you do the impossible: get it back.
They're frustrated; you win the point
with just sheer effort, sheer will.

Your focus and concentration
is maintained through each game, each shot;
your tenacity and guile
likewise never waver.

And even when you're down
and just points from defeat,
when your forehand has crumbled,
your mind refuses to let go.

You somehow dig deeper within yourself
and find a way to keep fighting;
something all athletes would admire,
but few can achieve.

Often you clench victory from the brink of defeat;
but if you do succumb,
there is always the assurance
that it wasn't without a fight.

But that fire in your eyes-
that inextinguishable fire-
only says you will be back,
and ready to do battle again.

You are a fighter, a survivor, a champion-
so I am confident you will
face and overcome
every obstacle you meet in life.

It is for this fight,
this relentless will to succeed,
that you will forever be
my inspiration, my idol, my hero.