May 22, 2023 at 4:09 pm
Zeist Renn Alderlestein (20) from Schott from Zeist has played tennis in America for two years. At Alabama, the Zest native combined sports and studies. This is what made the experience unforgettable. “You’ve been thrown in at the deep end.”
Rien Alderliesten has returned to the Netherlands for two and a half weeks. He traded the warmth of America’s deep south, with its rich history and travels to Florida, for the ailing spring of his homeland. “I miss him so much,” Alderlestine says on the porch at Schott. “On the other hand, I have good prospects here. After the summer I will start studying dentistry in Amsterdam and I can participate in different teams here at Schott.
Out of bounds
Alderlestein played tennis in America for two years at the University of Montevallo in Alabama. Thanks to Overborder, a Belgian company that specializes in bringing athletes to the United States, he was able to play tennis and study there for two years. “There were many options in America, like in Florida, but the team and coaches in Alabama seemed more fun and closer to me. I was on a beautiful campus where everything was well organized. People are very open.”
This sense of hospitality was further emphasized when a few Montevallo residents came to watch the games and excitedly invited the team and coaches to the house for a barbecue. “We did too. They also attended the graduation ceremony over two weeks ago. Typical American and a lovely experience.”
It’s been hard work for Alderlestine for two years. Three days a week, before he went back to school, he would be in the gym from six-thirty to eight. After a quick shower and breakfast, he took biology classes. He was at the tennis court at three o’clock in the afternoon, and often until about six o’clock. After showering and eating, he had to do his homework before going out to do something with his friends or go to bed early because his alarm went off early the next morning.
On the track six times a week
During the two years he spent in America, tennis player Shot experienced significant personal development. At the age of eighteen, he lived alone from day to day. “I went there by myself, I didn’t know anyone and I was on the other side of the world. Then you have to figure it all out on your own. You’re thrown in at the deep end and suddenly find yourself in your own apartment. That’s what shaped me as a person. Things moved quickly in tennis. A lot of experience and I became more confident and fitter. Here I was walking on the track three to four times a week, and there I was six times.
Alderliesten made lifelong friends from his time in America. Although the Zeest native does not expect to become a professional tennis player, he still hopes to achieve as much as possible from his career. “I would like to play international tournaments, but you have to get there first to get points. You have to think about ITF tournaments where the top 100 players are not playing.
A new chapter awaits Alderliesten with his studies and tennis at Shot. “But America was so beautiful, I can recommend it to everyone. It was a great experience.”
“Professional reader. Award-winning gamer. Zombie buff. Social media junkie. Bacon maven. Web scholar.”