On a bright day in Lagos, Nigeria, negotiation and an agreement have been reached with a media team and GEAP-F MEDIA LTD, a content creation business that aids in spreading the stories of young athletes around the world, to interview one of the best tennis players in her age group, a young tennis prodigee, and a UNICEF ambassador, Fontenel Chelsea.
In a dark short-sleeved shirt, a pink baseball cap, and with some clearly visible sports books on the book rack behind the chair, Edafe Matthew Eseoghene speaks as he settles into a chair in the light grey background of his studio at the front of his office desk, where he’s about to start an explosive interview with Chelsea Fontenel and her parents via Zoom.
Edafe Matthew, who himself understands the importance of hard work side-by-side with talent, waxed lyrical about Fontenel’s achievement at such a tender age.
“Without intending to disparage the great Martin Tyler, Jude Odion Ighalo, or anyone else I’ve interviewed before, I think I’ve got one of the greatest guests on the show today,” he said.
Chelsea’s parents are seated on either side of her in the Fontenel family living room, where they can be seen from the opposite side of the interview section. They are both beaming with pride and gratitude for their daughter’s rare talent for multiple roles, and their expressions are both blushing. Chelsea Fontenel happens to wear this infectious smile that could have prevented the battle of bastards in George R. R. Martin’s books of Game of Thrones. lol!
The wooden-framed shelf behind them is adorned with numerous medals and trophies that Chelsea has won to this point in her career. I’d say the content on that shelf already shows how Chelsea is more than just a talent, but a walking billboard for how far she has walked her way through the wilderness of fierce competition and arrived at the scintillating moment of victory.
As black people, we have ceded our right to self-expression to those who are ignorant of the realities of our daily lives and who only have their own perceptions of what it means to be black. We must tell our own stories in order to capture their best elements. We know our struggles, challenges, strengths and weaknesses.
Who is Chelsea Fontenel?
Chelsea Fontenel is a 16 year old multi talented artist and she’s an athlete gifted with the talent of a future Grand Slam winner, groomed in Switzerland and currently being nurtured in the USA at the prestigious IMG Academy as a student athlete where she is already breaking records with multiple awards. She’s also a UNICEF ambassador.
“Chelsea is a God given child and she’s just beautiful but also endowed with talents that cannot be traced to anyone from our immediate families” Chelsea parents remarked as they tried to explain how special she really is.
Having discovered that she was a special child, the Fontanels tried everything possible to give Chelsea the opportunity they never had for her to thrive, and it has been a rollercoaster of emotions,sacrifices, and dedication from everyone in the family.
It costs a lot of money to try to raise a child with Chelsea’s abilities, especially when you take into account how expensive Switzerland is. “It is really expensive and I can say 500,000 Swiss francs has gone into Chelsea and I can say it did not come from our pockets,” Mr. Fontenel said.
Chelsea has developed to the stage where the training she needs is advanced, and she got a scholarship to go to America, and we let her go because of the financial situation, and we have always been a close family. Mr. Fontenel is enthused with mixed emotions as they do not have the finances to go with Chelsea to America but are thankful for the scholarship opportunity. Chelsea is not only exceptional in tennis but also good with music. She’s endowed with good vocal cords, and to show how good she is, she has never taken any professional lessons in music; rather, they come to her naturally. She has actually published an original she wrote herself, and she plans on writing more with the little downtime she can afford when she’s either not practising on the tennis court, going to tournaments, or in school.
The journey to this stardom that Chelsea has/is enjoying does come without challenges, and sometimes it’s a bit of a lonely walk in the park for her considering she has to grow so fast without the guidance of her folks in a new continent and country. Mrs. Fontenel added that her daughter’s abilities came naturally and that she’s not only exceptional in both sports and music but also a top grade A student. She explains, “It’s fascinating to see how people, especially when they’re pushed a little bit beyond their comfort levels, can be groomed for tremendous growth.” and it is evident in Chelsea’s capabilities. Mis Chelsea acknowledges that her career is forged on the foundation of team contributions from her parents, coaches, and sponsors, and I think it’s a whole level of elite mentality to acknowledge the efforts of others in her journey.
Chelsea Fontenel looks up to Serena Williams and wishes to emulate her hard work and dedication. She recognizes that there will be wins and losses, but seeing how much Serena has accomplished and continues to inspire will always be a source of motivation for her. Chelsea is known for her big heart through her charity campaigns, and she feels it is natural to give because her life is a testament of privilege.
Chelsea Fontanel has accomplished incredible things in her young career, and at this rate, the sky is only the beginning. However, none of these accomplishments occurred overnight. Instead, it took her parents’ process of recognizing and nurturing her unique talents; the Swiss government’s provision of top facilities that will allow for the nurturing of talent like her; the incredible pools of coaches who have been with her from the beginning; and the sponsors who are still supporting the process. Chelsea Fontanel’s shared grit, dedication, desire, and passion must also be acknowledged because it takes a lot of self-control for her to have achieved these lofty goals at such a young age, especially given the abundance of distractions for teenagers her age
Chelsea Fontenel has shown that her self discipline is the greatest form of self love.
It ignores current pleasures for bigger rewards to come.
It is loving yourself enough to give yourself everything you ever wanted.
Watch out for Chelsea Fontenel as she conquers the world with her fierce backhand and amazing voice.