Teen Tennis Star Answers Critics on the Court

Amid questions about her weight, Taylor Townsend, 18, beats top-ranked French woman at the French Open.
1:45 | 05/29/14

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Transcript for Teen Tennis Star Answers Critics on the Court
story coming up now. We do. That's right. 18-year-old Taylor Townsend, she stunned the world at the French open on Wednesday. But this isn't the first time she's been in the spotlight for a very different reason. ABC's Mara schiavocampo has the story. Reporter: She's the teen tennis phenom nailing the court. And the world's attention. After both Williams sisters lost at the French open on Wednesday, 18-year-old Taylor Townsend beat the top-ranked French woman in front of her hometown crowd in her very first grand slam. I mean, I did my little victory dance. I was so happy. It felt really great. Reporter: Though she's a fresh face for many, it's not the first time Townsend has been in the spotlight. In 2012, when Townsend was ranked the best junior girls player in the world, the U.S. Tennis association tried to bench her, refusing to pay for any travel. It said for health reasons. But many believe that was code for saying Townsend was overweight. It helped me believe in myself more. And it also opened my eyes to say, you're not going to look like anyone else. Reporter: Townsend is not the first female tennis star to stays criticism about her weight. Including Lindsay Davenport. Townsend said focusing on her body helped her to become a better player. It was a huge plus for me. I started working really hard, trying to get in the best shape I can be. She's the living example of someone who has heard all of that criticism and dealt with it. And used it to fuel her to play better tennis. Reporter: A young player now focused on winning. Not her weight. For "Good morning America," maumara schiavocam schiavocampo, ABC news, New York.

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