The early years
I was born in Parma, Italy, on the 6th of June 1983, what an awesome day I guess! It definitely made an impact on the world!! I was born very early in the morning, an early alarm clock for me. So ever since then, I love to sleep in!
Nobody else in my family plays squash. I got to know squash through school and had a chance to start playing. I enjoyed it straight away and soon played every day. And I never looked back!Parma
I still live in Parma, where all my family and friends are, It’s a small and very nice city. You can find the best food in the world here, my mum is the chef… Some of the squash girls came for a stop over at the Manetta family kitchen and you could tell they enjoyed it! I do my training here in Parma. Twice a week I travel to Milan to train with my coach Marcus Berrett. I also train in Riccione, at the national squash center.
Squash and après squash
I still have a vivid memory about Greg Gaultier being the first player to really impress me when I was 13 and played in my first junior European team tournament in Spain. Greg is so talented! I take bits and pieces from many different players. Every tournament, I learn something new…
I think confidence is important to get you through difficult moments. A few good wins is a good recipe for some confidence by the way! I also try to enjoy my squash and my matches, I try to work hard but also have some fun out there.
I think it’s important to have some hobbies to take my mind of off squash. I enjoy horse riding a lot. Mind you, I don’t have a horse because it would be too much work and I’m away from home a lot obviously. But once or twice a week, I go to this really nice club where I can go riding. It’s a great feeling on a horse, everything is so quiet. All you can hear is the horse and yourself, mmm.
I also love the sea, I go to the beach as much as I can in the summer, I love it. Summer is the best part of the year for me. It’s very social over here, I meet my friends for nice dinners whenever I can. I would like to play more tennis, but I can’t right now of course. After my squash career, my hobby might be tennis.
I watch movies as well and really like Dustin Hoffman, Robert de Niro, Colin Farrell and Julia Roberts.Passion
I live life to the max, I don’t want to miss out on anything! Giving it all to the people who mean the most to me. I follow my feelings, my heart comes before my head most of the times. Sometimes that works out well, other times it doesn’t. But what can I do? I’m an emotional person, I live only once so I’m very passionate about it. I have a tattoo that says: “live, love & laugh”. That says it all really…
I’m not a good chef, I actually can’t cook!! I am a little spoiled there as my mum is always cooking and I have no interest in learning. Italian food is my favourite food. Then sushi and Thai food but they don’t have nice bread and nice wine to go with it I learnt to have different dishes while travelling and I like trying anything that looks interesting and tasty. But bottom line, I don’t think there’s a better food culture than the Italian one…
Going for a better world!
I have one more thought to share with the world, I hope that Barack Obama will contribute to making this world a better place because I think we can do better, yes, we can! It’s a bit sad to see how a country like Italy, which is full of resources and possibilities, seems to not live up to its potential. I see people around me who are unhappy every day at the moment, and I find this upsetting. But I’m confident we will get out of this “bubble” so we can live better lives again!