Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Preston, England
Morariu article. Don't know if some-one has already posted it, but hey.......
Here it is, it's from July 3rd:
'Morariu Brings Healthy Perspective To Her Comeback
In May 2001, Corina Morariu was one of the bright lights of American tennis. A winner of 12 WTA doubles titles, once ranked as high as # 1 in that discipline and # 29 in singles, her place in the sport seemed completely secure. However, just a week after playing a clay court event in Europe, Morariu found that security shattered. She was diagnosed with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia, a rare and life-threatening form of cancer. A staggering display of support followed from fans and fellow players, with Jennifer Capriati even dedicating the 2001 French Open title to her stricken compatriot. With the disease now in remission, Morariu is preparing to rejoin her peers, playing World Team Tennis for the Philadelphia Freedoms.
In the early days of her battle against leukemia, Morariu's focus was not on tennis, but on merely staying alive. "I was as critical as you could possibly be...pretty close to dying, actually." When her fourth and final hospital stay ended the day after Thanksgiving, Corina was in no shape to play any sport, having lost a significant amount of weight and all of her muscle tone. Unable to even walk more than 20 yards at first, she made progress one step at a time, "gradually trying to get my body back into shape." After deciding that a professional tennis comeback was "something I wanted to try," she began to step up her training in April. Morariu hired a new coach (Philip Farmer) and has been splitting time between his base in Texas and her home in Florida, gearing up for the World Team Tennis season.
A member of the league champion Sacramento Capitals in 1998, Morariu is no stranger to Team Tennis. "It's the perfect setting for me to start to get some matches in," she says of the low-stress WTT scene. "I'm really looking forward to seeing everybody and getting out there. I've always loved playing on a team, having that support. The crowds are great."
Following her campaign with the Freedoms, Morariu is planning to play doubles in San Diego and squeeze in a few singles matches before the US Open. While the schedule may sound ambitious, her expectations are realistic. "I'm not under any delusion that it's gonna be really easy," the 24-year-old said of the comeback, which she assumes will try her patience at times. "I've never been one to set specific goals... It's more about the journey and what I've learned in the past year."
Not surprisingly, Morariu's brush with mortality gave her a new point of view. Realizing that tennis results are "so unimportant in the grand scheme of things," she now devotes much of her time to charity work. Seeing the positive ways her body has responded to the training has been the main joy of her comeback process thus far. Morariu's health has improved to such an extent that "a good day a year ago would be the worst day I could imagine now." She even finds herself waking up in the morning and thinking "Wow, this is what it feels like to feel good." It's a feeling she had forgotten and may never take for granted again. Since there is a low percentage chance of the disease returning, Corina Morariu has already scored a victory more significant than any she'll experience on a tennis court.'