Sibling rivalry yields on-court success


Kevin Gutierrez

Senior Gerritt Bod returns the ball after a well struck hit from his opposition.

For these two brothers, there siblings rivalry extends to the tennis court.They both take turns sharing the No. 1 spot for singles play at the varsity level.

Gerritt Bod is a senior who took up tennis his freshman year. He has played in previous years with family members at Oak Park to get the general understanding of the game. In high school he focused more on his premature skills and got the results he’s wanted.

“I’ve always been naturally good at the sport,” Bod said. “When I got the chance to be coached I saw the areas I was weak in and got to improve.” He tries to strategize as much as possible. To Gerritt, tennis is more of a mind game than anything.  

“When I’m in a game I try to block out my thoughts so I can focus.” he said. “So instead of wasting more energy, I can learn how to work around the ball.” Focus is a very important attribute in tennis. This is something Garrit learned over time, with constant practice and persistence.   

As a junior, he aims to be the only Bod brother with the No. 1 spot for singles. Although he still has learned a lot from his brother, branching out into his own techniques has taught him more, as Gavinn Bod is quite the opposite of his brother.

He is slightly more aggressive when it comes to tennis and, unlike his brother, he plays more physically, using his strength as an advantage.

“When I use more power I am able to have more control over the ball.” He believes this is what helps him maintain the No. 1 position.

As Gerritt approaches the end of his high school career, he is pleased to know his brother will carry on their legacy. “I’m proud to say I taught him a lot,” he said. “I’m not sure he would agree with that but he knows the truth.”

Gavinn is ready to carry the weight of his team without his favorite competitor. “I just know it won’t be as competitive without Gerritt,” he said. “We take our arguments from the court to the dinner table all the time.” Simply having his brother around fuels his fire to beat him.

“I think being younger and being as good as Gerritt gives me a lot of confidence,” he said. “He is really my best friend and I’m glad we got to play together these past few years.” On the court they always give each other advice in attempts to assist their performance.

“I learn so much from him,” Gerritt said. “Whenever i’m tired or not that enthusiastic on the court Gavinn pumps me up all the time.” Gerritt values his brothers input on the court. They both serve as each other’s No. 1 support system.