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Team tattoos a theme in Tucson

October 15, 2011 01:06 PM
The Southern California team sports their "Driven" tattoo.
Each member of the Middle States women's 3.5 team has "One Love" tattooed on her ankle.
By Matt Birch, special to USTA.com

-- Two of the teams competing at the USTA Adult League 3.5 National Championships this weekend have taken a bold step to show off their team spirit and pride by getting matching tattoos.

The tattoos may be temporary, but the ladies representing the Middle States and Southern California sections know that the memories created this weekend at the Jim Reffkin Tennis Center will be permanent.

The Middle States women, who hail from the Philadelphia area, have named their team "One Love" after being inspired by the Bob Marley song, and each member of the team has the phrase tattooed on their ankles this weekend.

Team captain Lynne May explained that the tattoos were a special addition to commemorate playing at Nationals.

"The tattoos represent our team name, ‘One Love,'" she said. "This is a first for us. This is the big day, which we played eight months to get to. One of our girls even brought us 'One Love' hats, and all of this bonds us, which makes us stronger. We’re doing all of this as one."

May also discussed her personal excitement to compete this weekend at the National Championships.

"It is an awesome experience. It’s once in a lifetime. I’ve been a member of the USTA for over 17 years, and to finally reach Nationals is really great. I never thought that I would get here, and it is an honor to represent our area."

The Southern California ladies also have a unique theme and have showcased it via arm tattoos at each stage of their season leading up to their appearance at Nationals.
Team captain Luan Smith talked about her team’s "Driven" theme and the story behind her squad's unique tattoos.

"We started off with a mission, and that was to get here to Nationals. We thought no one is going to work harder than us, and I guarantee nobody has worked harder than us. We are driven."

Team member Gigi McMillan also played a big role in creating and acquiring the tattoos for her team. She and Smith went online and found a calligrapher in London who would design the tattoo for the team. They then sent the design to an industrial company, which required them to buy 1,000 tattoos in order for the company to make the tattoos for the team.

These ladies, who come from the Manhattan Beach area, received their 1,000 tattoos, and each team member has worn one in every tournament that the team has been a part of this season.
Both teams hope that this unique team-bonding exercise will lead to success this weekend as they vie for a National Championship.


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