Maria Patrascu is a Canadian/Romanian tennis player
Maria was only 5 years old when she stepped on the tennis court, and ever since then she fell in love with the sport. At the age of 21 years old, she is currently ranked at #14 in Canada and 1000 WTA in singles and doubles world ranking.
When did you decide that you wanted to focus on playing Tennis professionally? What sacrifices did you have to make?
I kind of always knew since I was 5 and picked up a racquet that this is what I wanted to do. I started to realize the sacrifices when I was about 10 and turned officially professional at 18. I had a very different childhood growing up, often feeling left out at school because I was always busy with tennis. It didn’t get easier as I got older because I started to travel more alone due to a limited budget, and even though my travels brought me to amazing places, I was often by myself! I’ve realized the importance to have support around you. The last few years have been so much better for me and I’m very happy I made the sacrifices that I did when I was younger because they made me the person I am today.
Many lessons can be learned in sport, especially playing in an individual sport such as Tennis - What have you learned the most from playing over the years?
I’ve learned how to be independent and figure things out on my own, whether that’s in high pressure situations on the court or off court when I’m in a foreign country (and I miss a flight to my next tournament…true story). I think the biggest thing you learn in tennis is how to deal with immediate success or failure. There is no in between; you either win or lose. How you let that affect you influences the outcome of the next point, game, match, and even competition. I learned that success or failure doesn’t define you as a person, it’s how you deal with it that eventually shapes who you are.
Who is an athlete that you look up to?
Billie Jean King is a true inspiration. She formed the Women’s Tennis Association, pushed for equal prize money for women, beat Bobby Riggs in the famous “Battle of the Sexes” with an audience of 90 million viewers, and was the first prominent openly gay female athlete. A true trailblazer for women’s rights!
Levelwear is celebrating International Women’s Day all month long, who would you like to celebrate this month and why?
There’s so many women around the world to celebrate! I really think moms are everyday superheroes and what they do for their kids and families is something truly special. I hope one day I can do what my mother can. In the tennis world, it would be mother’s like Kim Clijsters or Serena Williams; both coming back after having a baby to win a grand slam!
What’s your favourite Verve - Levelwear item to wear?
The Jayden Cardigan for sure! It is elegant, reversible, soft, and perfect for all occasions. I also love how flowy and form-flattering it is. My definition of the perfect cardigan.