A Dynamic Duo: Anna Leigh Waters and Leigh Waters - Pioneers of Pickleball Power
In the world of pickleball, a unique and inspiring mother-daughter duo has been making waves with their exceptional skills, strategic gameplay, and unwavering bond. Anna Leigh Waters, at just 16 years old, has already etched her name in pickleball history as one of the sport's brightest stars. Her mother, Leigh Waters, serves as both a mentor and partner, guiding Anna Leigh's path on and off the court.
Anna Leigh's journey into pickleball began at a young age, and her rise to prominence was nothing short of meteoric. Becoming a professional player at the tender age of twelve, she earned the distinction of being the youngest professional pickleball player and champion in history. Born into an athletic family, Anna Leigh was no stranger to sports, having played tennis and soccer. However, it was during a family evacuation from Hurricane Irma in 2017 that she was introduced to pickleball by her grandfather in his Pennsylvania backyard.
Partnering with her mother, Leigh Waters, the pair revolutionized the pickleball scene with their dynamic and aggressive playing style. Nicknamed "banging" and "ripping," they chose to forego the traditional patient dinking and instead focused on speeding up the game and employing power-packed shots to dominate their opponents. This bold strategy not only garnered them a strong following but also highlighted their fearlessness and innovation in the sport.
Anna Leigh's partnership with her mother remains a heartwarming testament to the power of family bonds. As Leigh continues to coach and manage Anna Leigh's career, their collaboration extends beyond the court, creating a seamless blend of support and guidance. In mixed doubles, Anna Leigh finds a formidable partner in the accomplished Ben Johns, a partnership that has yielded an impressive 19 Gold Medals and an undefeated record.
Anna Leigh's achievements are nothing short of astonishing. With 14 PPA Triple Crowns under her belt, she has consistently showcased her prowess in singles, doubles, and mixed doubles events. A PPA Triple Crown signifies a remarkable achievement where a player wins gold in the singles, doubles, and mixed doubles categories in the same tournament.
Adding to her accolades, Anna Leigh boasts an astounding collection of 6 U.S. Open Gold Medals and 6 USAPA Nationals Gold Medals. Together with her mother, they have clinched a total of 13 Women's Doubles medals - 7 Gold, 4 Silver, and 2 Bronze - a testament to their exceptional teamwork and competitive spirit.
Beyond her athletic accomplishments, Anna Leigh is a charismatic and down-to-earth teenager who effortlessly balances her pickleball commitments with her interests. She brings her infectious smile and passion to every match, leaving no doubt about her determination to succeed. Outside of pickleball, she finds joy in soccer, shopping, cooking, and fashion.
To summarize, Anna Leigh Waters and her mother Leigh Waters have made an indelible mark on the world of pickleball, redefining the game with their innovative style and unbreakable bond. Their journey serves as an inspiration to athletes of all ages, proving that with dedication, passion, and a strong support system, anything is possible. As they continue to excel individually and as a team, the future shines brightly for this remarkable mother-daughter pickleball duo.