By Ryan Vermont (@Your_Pal_Ryan)
Some say that representing a national team is the highest honor an athlete can achieve.
San Jose State’s second-winningest women’s tennis player and recent graduate Gaelle Rey will get that chance next month when she will represent Switzerland at the World University Games in Taipei, Taiwan. The 29th edition of the event is scheduled for Aug. 19-30.
“I feel really lucky to be selected,” Rey said. “This event is very similar to the Olympic Games, so this is just amazing to be able to experience that in a lifetime.”
Of the team of four, the Geneva native is the sole female on the roster.
“A lot of girls were on the list and then they chose the best player, which was me apparently,” Rey said.
Rey, a key contributor in SJSU clinching the 2017 Mountain West title, will be put to the test against some of the top student-athletes from universities worldwide.
“I know that the level is really high, but I do not expect anything,” Rey said. “I am just going there in the mindset of playing my best tennis and have fun on the court and off the court.”
Also part of team Switzerland is Daniel Valent (Vanderbilt) Adam Moundir (Old Dominion) and Enzo Sommer (Washington).
Rey said she was excited for the opportunity to play in the mixed doubles competition, something she hasn’t done before.
Thousands of athletes from across the globe will be competing in the international multi-sport event; 22 different sports will be played.
“We will stay in an “Olympic Village” with 10,000 athletes from all around the world so this will be interesting to learn about the different cultures, and create some friendships,” Rey said.
After the Games, Rey said she will be putting tennis a little to the side in order to focus on earning her master’s degree in Switzerland.
The singles round of 64 opens up on Monday the 21st at 9:30 a.m. local time (Sunday the 20th at 6:30 PT). There is a 15 hour time difference from the West Coast.