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Championship Week
New Outfit, Lucky Penny Boost Crawley's Championship Outlook

Fiona Crawley needed a way to kill time before her match. She didn’t want to sit around all day and psych herself out in nervous anticipation for the late afternoon Girls 16s final of the USTA Billie Jean King National Hard Court Championships in San Diego.

Girls 16s Singles Champion Fiona Crawley
© J. Fred Sidhu

After having a good breakfast, Crawley and her mother, Ingrid, decided to go shopping at Lululemon. Crawley wanted to buy a new outfit to wear for the final. She found a skirt and top she loved and approached the register.

Once she told the store workers she would be playing on the Tennis Channel in the new outfit, they gave her the shirt, which had a small stain on it, for free. Her mom washed out the stain with water, and Crawley arrived at Barnes Tennis Center looking good and feeling better.

She walked onto Stadium Court for the warm-up and found a penny facing head’s up near the baseline.

“I grabbed it right away,” Crawley said. “I am very superstitious and that was a good sign.”

Less than two hours later, the third-seeded Crawley added to her riches by defeating No. 4 Allura Zamarripa 6-4, 6-0 to capture a gold ball and a wild card into the U.S. Open Junior Championships.

“Oh my gosh. I am overwhelmed. I really can’t even believe this is real right now,” the 16-year-old Crawley said in the immediate aftermath. “I remember watching the final last year and hoping I would be there one day. But they were playing at such a high level that I really didn’t know if it was possible. It’s crazy.”

Adding a third gold ball to her collection was satisfying for Crawley, but the chance to make her Junior Grand Slam debut at the U.S. Open took precedence. The trip has an allure that extends beyond the courts for the blue chip rising junior.

“Honestly, that was the biggest motivator. I wanted to go to New York so badly because my favorite show is Sex and the City and Carrie Bradshaw is my inspiration,” Crawley said with a laugh. “I really wanted to go there and I made it for tennis, which is my passion, so it’s even better. It’s like a dream come true.”

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Page updated on Monday, December 06, 2021
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