The day Garbiñe Muguruza joined the Civil Guard: “They opened my eyes”

Yesterday's news in sports was the retirement of Garbiñe Muguruza, aged 30. She was predictable because she has been going through the challenges without competing for 15 months, after leaving the courts to find motivation, and what she discovered is that she no longer missed tennis.

The tennis player who returned Spanish women's tennis to the top after the golden era of Arantxa Sánchez Vicario and Conchita Martínez is retiring. She won two Grand Slams: Roland Garros in 2016, against none other than Serena Williams; and Wimbledon 2017, against Venus Williams.

But Garbiñe is an all-rounder who has shown that she is also up for challenges off the track. At the end of 2019, after a poor season in sports, he changed the sun lounger on a paradisiacal beach to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa.. Braving cliffs and sub-zero temperatures, Muguruza scaled Africa's highest peak during a five-day climb. “We crossed waterfalls, rivers, frozen rivers, caves, cliffs and the most difficult thing: frozen nights. At one point, I was crying when my guide told me not to look at the 300m free fall,” Muguruza wrote in social media posts chronicling her trip.

Although if there is something that the tennis player does not forget, it is her experience with the Civil Guard. She participated in helicopter rescue missions, did cave diving, hiked with the mountain brigade and took personal defense classesl. Everything, together with Meritorious. In 2020, Garbine Muguruza He took advantage of a good part of the preseason to do something he had been thinking about for some time: experience military training with elite forces in a multitude of contexts.

“I always wanted to do military training,” Garbiñe told 'The National News', offering more details of these experiences in an interview from Abu Dhabi, where she competed in the WTA 500.

Tennis players don't usually have much free time to seek other experiences. The season is long, the travel is extensive and the space between campaigns, around a month, does not lend itself to much more than a couple of weeks of vacation to recharge, before the preseason begins. But that break was very different. After the rescheduled French Open concluded on October 5, the WTA Tour staged just two more tournaments, in the Czech city of Ostrava and Linz in Austria, after the fall Asian tournament was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Garbine Muguruza did not play in any tournaments, so her campaign came to an end after her third-round exit at Roland Garros. With the extra time on your calendar, The two-time Spanish Grand Slam champion took the opportunity to do something a little different: she joined the Civil Guard.

During his “experimental” week, Muguruza participated in helicopter rescue missions, cave diving, hiked with the mountain brigade, and participated in self-defense classes, sharing much of the experience with his almost 850,000 followers on Instagram.

“I always wanted to do military training, ever since I was a little girl, but the timing was never right when I had to play tennis. It was an incredible week. We went to Mallorca to train there and more than the activities we did, which were incredible, we simply shared with them the type of work they do; These are people who don't get awards or trophies. I loved”.

There was one area that he found particularly sobering. The Spanish tennis player was able to share time with the Coast Guard, and see firsthand the difficulties of many people on the high seas or on the coast. “It was quite difficult because you see a lot of people in need. I experienced many aspects of Civil Guard work and found this one quite difficult. I love all things adventure, but there is an uglier reality they have to face. “That really opened my eyes.”

Now, you do not put limits on a future in which you assure that you will continue to be linked to the world of tennis after a successful career in which you have pocketed about 25 million dollars, only in prizes for victories and tournaments.