One of Solomon Islands’ tennis stars who is based in USA, Zinnia Leamana, has graduated with a Bachelor degree in Marketing and Minor Supply Chain Management at Clayton State University in the state of Georgia.
Leamana, 23, who hails from Isabel Province, was among 10 current and former Clayton State student-athletes who have earned their degrees at the 2015 Spring Commencement Ceremony held at the Athletics Center last Saturday.
The others who also earned their degree with her were Craig Wong and Omari Murray (men’s basketball), Will Shenstone and Josh Stanley (men’s golf), Lois Edvardsson (women’s soccer), Nick Punter (men’s soccer),Jhaquil Richardson (women’s track & field), Ciaran Lane (men’s track & field) and Breanna Fort (women’s basketball).
Prior to attending Clayton State University she attended Collin College in Texas from 2010-2012 where she started her tennis career.
She told Sunday Sports that her career all started with just a ball and a tennis racquet literally (her school did not have a tennis court, Koloale Primary School).
“Little did I know it would take me to where I am today, I just never looked back, I took all my chances and opportunities and gave everything I could to make my dreams become a reality,” Leamana said.
“My very first year in college I was awarded the MVP (Most valuable player) award as well as the player with the most wins award.
“It gave me so much confidence and I told myself, ‘I am going to finish what I came here to do’ and it was no turning back for me until I complete my education and I did and I couldn’t be happier, “ she added.
Leamana attributed her success to her families and those that supported her.
“I couldn’t have done this alone, I have been supported by my very hardworking family (mum: Helen Leamana, dad: George Leamana and brothers RoxlyLeamana and late Clyde Leamana), extended family, my coaches in Solomon Islands, Fiji (International Tennis Federation), and in America and many great friends as motivators, I thank you all with all my heart,’’ she added.
She said she is currently obtaining a year of practical in the United States and hoping to further her studies upon the completion of her practical.
She said once all is done, she cannot wait to contribute to Solomon Tennis to continue developing great players and even students to reach their goals.
She advised young champions at home to dream big and work hard, improve on at least one part of your game every day.
“Have a dream, have a plan and focus, whether it’s in the classroom or on the tennis court.
“Nothing great comes easy so be willing to sacrifice and most of all have faith in what you do. I believe in you guys!”
By CHARLES KADAMANA