To be in the top 100 athletes in any sport, at any age is impressive, but to see that kind of drive in a 12-year-old that still truly loves the game of tennis is downright remarkable.
Juan de Dios Abboud has been playing tennis since he was five-years-old, but in the past few years his game has taken off and with it his standings in the state of Texas and across the country. He currently sits at number 11 in the state and 88th in the U.S. for all 12-year-olds.
"It takes really a lot of hard work getting into and letting Chris push me and Mike letting them push me to the limit just to get me better. I play lots of sports but tennis just got to be one of my favorite sports."
His coach says the attitude Juan de Dios brings to the game is something he rarely sees in his athletes, old or young.
"I’ve never had any kid like Juan de Dios with the determination but yet the fun for the sport. He doesn't put pressure on himself taking it like a business but takes it like any other game."
"He never gets too upset even when things aren't going his way at tournaments."
While the 12-year-old has reached levels most people his age could never even dream of he admits to taking some jokes from his friends.
"I think they just think it's me playing tennis but no i take it really serious and I make it fun for myself."
While many kids his age would be dreaming of being a professional tennis player, Abboud has another plans for his future.
"I want to play division one and i want to go to one of the top colleges here in Texas."
"That's his main goal and we are going to keep working on it everyday."
"My big goal is to go to Baylor, division one. And my small goal is to go to the top 10 and I’m 11 so I just need one more spot."
Abboud's chance to crack the top ten will come in Wichita Falls next week. His next goal after that is to make a national tournament in Kalamazoo Michigan.