African Wheelchair Tennis Player Targets First Place

November 25, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. accomplishment [uh-KOM-plish-muh nt] (n.) – an achievement or anything that was done successfully
Example: His accomplishments include winning several medals in the tournament.

2. attitude [AT-i-tood, -tyood] (n.) – the way a person thinks or behaves
Example: Being optimistic is a good attitude.

3. limb [lim] (n.) – one’s arm or leg
Example: Johnny can no longer walk because he lost his lower limbs after the car accident.

4. amputee [am-pyoo-TEE] (n.) – someone who has lost all or part of the arm, leg, hand, etc.
Example: He became an amputee after he lost his right leg.

5. eminent [EM-uh-nuh nt] (adj.) – outstanding or renowned
Example: The eminent athlete is very influential.


Read the text below.
Lucas Sithole, a triple amputee, made history when he won a title at the 2013 US Open tennis tournament in September this year.

Currently, he is ranked number two in the world wheelchair quad singles division. He has also become famous in South Africa after being the first African to win a title in the US Open.

The 26-year-old athlete lost both his lower limbs and most of his right arm in a train accident during his childhood. Although he had many difficulties, he made it through this tragedy with the support of his family. His positive attitude towards life also helped him attain what he has right now.

Instead of being miserable and staying at home, Sithole learned different sports such as rugby, basketball, and tennis. Among these sports, he decided to focus on tennis as it is not very popular in Africa. He also finds tennis really challenging.

Holger Losch [losh] has been Sithole’s coach ever since he started playing tennis. Losch finds Sithole inspiring for he has an ability to overcome the challenges he faces. Sithole also has a great potential, said the coach.

The wheelchair tennis player has been playing professionally for two and a half years, but is far from being satisfied with all his accomplishments. The eminent player aims to win gold at the Paralympic Games in 2016. He also wants to be the world’s number one player in the men’s quad singles wheelchair tennis division.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         In what way can Lucas Sithole’s story be an inspiration to other people? Please explain your answer.
·         What do you think is the major reason why Lucas was able to have such accomplishments? Why do you think so?

Discussion B

·         What challenging situation have you overcome? Please tell your tutor about it.
·         How do you think people should deal with challenges in their lives? Please explain your answer.


November 25, 2013