Damar Hamlin is inspiring Jessica Pegula at the Australian Open
Jessica Pegula, daughter of the Buffalo Bills’ owners, says Damon Hamlin’s remarkable recovery has inspired his performance during this year’s Australian Open.
Pegula qualified for the last 16 with a straight sets win against Marta Kostyuk on Friday and will face either Victoria Azarenka or Zhu Lin for a place in the semi-finals.
“she is [Hamlin] The recovery has been so quick and so fast that it has taken a lot of weight off teams, players, games and other players,” Pegula said, per WTA.
“Whenever I can ride that kind of amazing story and emotion, I think it’s good to try to take that with you into your matches.”
The world No. 3 wore Hamlin’s No. 3 on his shorts during the tournament and said he has been in touch with the 24-year-old since his collapse.
Hamlin, who suffered a heart attack during a Jan. 2 game against the Cincinnati Bengals, was released from the hospital more than a week later but still faces a long recovery.
Jordan Rooney, Hamlin’s longtime friend and business partner, told CNN that the Bills safety still needs oxygen and his heart is being monitored regularly.
“He’s been with the team a few times but he still gets over so easily. He’s upbeat and positive and ready to get over it,” Rooney said.
AFC The Bills are set to play the Bengals again on Sunday, this time in the divisional round, to make it to the championship game.
But for Pegula, who has never reached an Australian Open semifinal, the event has given her a new perspective on the game that has become her life.
“Certainly some part of it has moved me a lot,” Pegula said. “It’s great. He’s written me several times since I won here. It’s just amazing. I think it shows you that people’s lives are at stake.
He added: “It’s much bigger than sports.
“Sometimes we lose sight of that. Sometimes it’s not a tennis match. Also it helps that you can play for free and I feel less stressed.
“I definitely took some of that with me, for sure.”