Jolie Wang (10)

Starting Age: 7

Trains at: United Badminton Club (Fremont, CA)

Jolie Wang has been dominating her age category since she started competing. She was the U11 Triple Crown Winner at the US Junior Nationals 2014 back in June. Her coach Xiaomu Liu says she uses her brain when she both trains and plays and never hesitates to ask questions. “My goal for her is to go to the Olympics,” coach Xiaomu Liu wishes. Well, the same goes for Jolie.

How do you enjoy being a Triple Crown national champion?

It feels magnificent since I fought my way through all my matches. Every match was hard, and all the other players were really good at playing badminton, too.

You had several 3-set-matches in semis and finals, but you won them all. How did you do that?

At that point of the match, anyone can succeed or fail. The main point is to have confidence in you and be tough mental-wise.

How did you enjoy your trip to the Pan Am Jr. competition in Guatemala?

The trip was very fun because a lot of other USA team players were on the same plane. The competition was a good experience for me because I might not get to go back to Guatemala in the future. This might be the once-in-a-lifetime chance to experience a country like Guatemala because we live in a rich and wonderful surrounding.

How did you start playing badminton?

It all started when I mastered all four strokes in swimming, so I needed to find another sport I was passionate about. I would hit the badminton birdie with my mom in the house for fun. My mom found United Badminton Club (UBC), and that’s how it started.

How many days per week do you practice?

I practice two hours per day, five times a week plus a private lesson for one hour.

Do you practice extra at home?

I usually practice netting and defending at home.

What part of badminton do you like?

I like to be able to enjoy doing what you like. It is not about winning and losing– it is about having fun.

What is your favorite shot?

I don’t really have a favorite shot because badminton is all about making the opponent run. You are supposed to mix different shots to make the opponent make a mistake or not reach the shot.

Which event do you like the most? Singles, doubles, mixed? And what is fun about the event?

I like singles the best because you are the only player on the court. You have to solve the problems yourself and use your skill levels to win.

What’s the best thing being a badminton player?

I would like to travel around the world and experience different environments and cultures.

What is your goal for your badminton career?

My goal is to reach the Olympics and fight for my country, USA.

What practice do you like?

I like playing matches at UBC because it helps us improve.

What practice you don’t like?

I don’t like doing physical drills for the last half hour of training.

How do you overcome your nervousness when you compete?

I don’t think about winning and losing. I think about how to play every point.

Who is your idol badminton player? And why?

My idol badminton player is Crystal Pan because she is really good, and she is from my club.

What is the greatest thing you have ever learned through playing badminton?

I learned to be tough mental wise and not look at winning and losing very importantly.

How would you advise younger players to achieve what you have achieved?

Everything happens through hard work, nothing happens magically. Work hard during training, and good things will come from it.

Can you beat your parents?

I could beat both of them two and a half years ago.

How many new friends have you made through playing badminton?

I have made a lot of new friends through playing badminton.

Do your school friends know that you play badminton?

All of my school friends know because I sometimes wear badminton shirts to school.

When you tell your friends about badminton how do you explain the sport?

Badminton is where you use a racquet, but a smaller one than in tennis and there is a birdie that is like a ball that you have to hit with your racquet.

What are three words that describe you?

Passionate. Motivated. Hard-working.

The interview was conducted in the summer of 2014.

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