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2021 Clay Court Nationals
Colby Makes Healthy Return to Win Boys 18s Title

Three years ago, Ryan Colby left the USTA National Clay Court Championships with his elbow in shambles and his tennis future in doubt.

A piece of bone in Colby’s elbow broke off during the tournament. He was diagnosed with osteochondritis dissecans (OCD) of the outer elbow side, a condition that results from repetitive trauma to the capitellum.

Boys 18s Singles Champion Ryan Colby
© Contributed Photo

Colby was told by some doctors that he would never play competitive tennis at a high level ever again. But Colby found a specialist that offered a solution, and he underwent successful bone transplant surgery.

Colby’s recovery came full circle last weekend when he stood on the clay at the Delray Beach Tennis Center in Florida as a champion. The blue chip rising senior from Alexandria, Virginia defeated No. 9 Nicholas Heng of Madison, Alabama 7-6(4), 6-3 in the final

“It meant a lot more because of all I have gone through,” said Colby, one of the No. 17 seeds. “It’s a great accomplishment to do this after getting hurt and pushing through it. My only goal for this tournament was to do the best I could. I didn’t really focus on winning. The best I could hope for was to get through the tournament healthy.”

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Page updated on Monday, March 13, 2023
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