Zheng Jie and Yan Zi, both from Chengdu in Sichuan Province, won
their second Grand Slam title of 2006 and China's first Wimbledon
doubles championship on July 9.
When they displayed their trophies to the audiences, few would
know that Zheng and Yan had had to overcome numerous hardships and
obstacles to achieve these resounding successes.
Zheng's parents firstly watched their daughter's matches at the
French Open in June, and her mother even bringing her a whole
package of instant noodles. After the Wimbledon semi-finals, Zheng
called her mother while eating the instant noodles. She told her
mother between mouthfuls, "I'm so hungry, I'd have starved if you
hadn't give me these instant noodles."
Zheng said she often ate bread or instant noodles when she
attended international tournaments abroad. She even sent SMS
messages to remind her parents to bring her instant noodles.
In recent years, Zheng and Yan had been busy with professional
tennis circuits, and tennis courts, hotels and airports became
their most frequently visited places. Yan said, sometimes they had
to travel 20 hours in the air, shuttling between Asia, Africa and
Yan and Zheng had to take care of their own daily-use articles
and their trophies when on board. They even left their own luggage
on the courts so that they could rush to the airport immediately
for the next match. Zheng said, they had little time to visit the
cities where the matches were held.
Zheng and Yan had participated in all kinds of tennis circuits
around the world by themselves at less than 20.
Zheng said," A professional tennis player should not depend on
others." The match time schedule often changed, and they had to be
on time, sometimes they could only catch a few winks of sleep, or
the umpire would announce they had waived the right to play.
Zheng and Yan had cooperated with each other closely to gain
more opportunities for their matches. Zheng often gave brilliant
ideas, while Yan could communicate with others in English. A simple
joke happened in the day would be enjoyed by them for quite a long
(Chinanews.cn July 13, 2006)