With the Canadian University Tennis Championships just days away, Sophie Bui is ready to use her experience to help Western take home the title.
“Our goal is definitely to win,” she says. “Playing at the Championships these past two years has given us a lot of experience and has shown us what we needed to improve on. We are more prepared and hopefully we can win it all this year.” The Western women placed third last year.
Bui, a 20-year-old native of Thornhill, Ontario, was a highly successful junior player who chose Western for its Health Sciences program. Playing university tennis wasn’t part of the plan until she arrived on campus and got to know the coaches and players. Bui has thrived in the team environment and battles hard for every point knowing her team is behind her. “The best part about playing university tennis is definitely the team aspect. Having teammates who are always there to support you is amazing,” she says.
Bui is a quiet leader who leads by example. “Sophie represents Western tennis with great class and fair play,” says Western women’s head coach Mike Richards. “It is always a great joy watching her play and represent our university. She’s been a big part of our three Ontario University Athletics titles.”
During her time at Western, Bui has noticed an increase in the level of competition among Canadian university programs. “The level of competition is getting stronger each year. More top junior players are deciding to stay in Canada rather than go to the U.S. which makes university tennis very competitive.”
Bui’s experience playing previous national championships has been positive. “It has been an awesome experience being able to play at this event. It’s a great feeling to represent your school at the highest level of university tennis. It’s also exciting seeing the pros up close and even being able to practise beside them.”
Naturally, Bui and her teammates have their sights set on claiming a first national title for the Western women’s tennis team. “Winning the title would mean so much to our team,” she says. “Everyone has put in so much time and hard work throughout the whole year, and this would be an amazing accomplishment.”
Come and cheer on the Western women’s team at the Aviva Centre! Western faces Memorial University in the semi-finals on Saturday, August 10, with the finals and third-place match the following day. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for ticket information.