July 18, 2024

No dream is too big: Angela Okutoyi's story

No dream is too big: Angela Okutoyi's story
Angella Okutoyi/File Photo

Raised by their grandmother, they faced many nights without a meal, their dreams often eclipsed by the harsh realities of life.

n the small art of the world, mainly known for marathon runners. Angela's story began. Born into a world of hardship, she and Rose, her twin sister, knew the bitter taste of struggle from the moment they entered this world. Raised by their grandmother, they faced many nights without a meal, their dreams often eclipsed by the harsh realities of life.

But amidst the darkness, a glimmer of hope emerged—a weathered tennis racket salvaged from a forgotten corner. With nothing but determination and raw talent, Angela and her sister took to the  courts of the local school their grandmother worked, their spirits unyielding despite the odds stacked against them.

As the years passed she caught the eye of a local coach and the tennis federation, who saw in her the potential for greatness, she trained in an ITF centre( a high performance training centre aimed to grow talent) for several years. 

 

With guidance, Angela's talent blossomed, her fierce determination driving her to push past the barriers that threatened to hold her back. Despite her background, she refused to let her circumstances define her destiny. 

Angela's breakthrough came when she won the Wimbledon doubles junior Grand Slam—an achievement that sent shockwaves through the tennis world and opened doors previously thought unreachable. Representing her country in the All African Games, she brought home gold in singles and silver in doubles, her victories serving as a beacon of hope for a nation hungry for tennis heroes. She continues to improve her world tennis ranking, currently at rank 532 and looking to achieve rank 400 by June 10th.

But Angela's journey was far from over. With her sights set on even greater heights, she seized the opportunity to pursue a college education and continue her tennis career simultaneously. Thanks to a full tennis scholarship, she found herself at Auburn University, surrounded by world-class facilities and coaches who believed in her potential.

Yet, college tennis was just the beginning. Beyond the confines of the campus lay a vast world of opportunities for those willing to seize them. Tournaments, both big and small, dotted the calendar, each one a chance to prove herself on the grand stage.

But success in the world of professional tennis isn't just about talent, The competition is fierce, each match a test of skill and mental fortitude. But with each victory, Angela grew stronger, more confident in her abilities. It was about grit, resilience, and the ability to push past the boundaries of what others deemed possible. It was about early mornings and late nights, sacrifice and determination.

College tennis proved to be a transformative experience for Angela, both on and off the court. Not only did she excel in her studies, but she also thrived in the competitive environment, honing her skills and pushing herself to new limits with each match.

As Angela's star continued to rise, so too did the opportunities that came her way. With the 2024 Olympics on the horizon, she finds herself on the brink of realizing a lifelong dream—a chance to represent her country on the world stage and inspire a new generation of young athletes.

But for Angela, success is about more than just personal glory. It is about proving that no dream is too big, no obstacle too daunting, for those willing to fight for what they believe in. And as she stands on the precipice of greatness, she knows that her journey is about more than just tennis—it is a testament to the power of resilience, determination, and the unbreakable human spirit. Her slogan #NoWEAKNESS sums her up.

Sylvia Ohaga-Murage is  the Co-founder Ramani Careers a career guidance and readiness platform www.ramanicareers.com