Serbian teenage tennis pro Bojana Jovanovski got a rude awakening earlier this week when she flew into Carlsbad, New Mexico instead of Carlsbad, California for the WTA San Diego Open.
Upon arriving in Carlsbad, NM, a man approached Bojana at the airport, apparently because she looked so out of place in the desert city which boasts a population of 26,000.
“What are you doing here?” the man asked. “Are you playing tennis?”
“Yeah, it’s a tennis tournament,” Jovanovski replied.
After waiting an additional 15 minutes, in a nearly empty airport, Jovanovski got on the phone to tournament transportation, which said it was looking for her at the California arrivals hall.
“They said they were at the airport and looking for me,” Jovanovski explained. “I said I was the only person here.”
The person on the California end of the conversation suddenly got the picture: “Are you in Carlsbad in California or in New Mexico?”
Continental geography finally sorted out, the transportation coordinator booked the 19-year-old on the next flight to Albuquerque, eight hours later.
After an overnight stay in the airport and two additional plane rides, 53rd ranked Jovanovski finally ended up in the right Carlsbad, albeit a half-hour before her match started.
It seems the lack of sleep and extra travel could have affected her play, as she lost her first-round match against ninth-seeded italian Roberta Vinci 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.