Saturday, June 28, 2008

Q&A with San Diego Surf player John Fitzpatrick

John Fitzpatrick from the Under-17/18 San Diego Surf (San Diego, Calif.)

How did you come to join the Under-17/18 San Diego Surf Development Academy team?

“We have the 16s, 17s, and 18s. The 16s is an Academy team, so I could have played on the 16s because I’m a ’91 (born in 1991). The team I was originally on was the 17s, and they’re not in the Academy so I chose the 18s because I wanted to be in the Academy. It’s a way more professional environment. I like having one game a day. It’s really good because we focus on quality of play more. You get to practice more and work on things and sometimes they give you things to work on. Usually, before when we used to play in tournaments with two games a day, you’d just get really run to the ground. You’re so tired all the time and the quality just shoots down.”

What do you think so far about the first year of the Development Academy?

“I think it’s really good for players who want to get called up to the U.S. team. I got called up partly because I’m involved in the Academy. I got called into the U18 camp. I went to Ukraine last summer but that was with the U17s. It was an international tournament, which is amazing. There’s a pool of 40 kids I think and they just kind of mix it and you just keep getting looks. Hopefully I’ll get called for another trip.”

What do you think of the level of play?

“The Academy gives us the opportunity to play on the highest level. Obviously, when you play on the highest level you get better and your game improves a lot more. Experience is a huge part of your game. Little things that happen during the game, if you have the experience and you’ve been through little situations and take advantage of them, then that can end up helping you win the game.”

Do you prefer playing one game a day?

“With one game a day, your mentality…you just got a focus on the game and you get prepared and everything. When you have two games a day you don’t have the time to ice yourself and then eat proper foods and then wait and digest and just be ready. With two games a days you have to rush and everything’s not healthy.”

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