“How do you analyze your defeat against Iga Swiatek (6-2, 6-3) this Thursday at the Masters?
It was a difficult match. She’s an excellent player, very solid who doesn’t give you anything. I did the best I could, but she was the strongest. She took me out of my comfort zone. It’s a bit sad for the score when you know that every game can count (for the classification of the hen). It’s like that. I felt closer than that 6-3, 6-2. There are plenty of things I can improve, but I played my game.
What have you tried to implement?
To get by with her, you have to try to deprive her of time, be aggressive, take her out of her comfort zone, but most of the time she does it better than you. She is really solid, she commits very few unforced errors and as soon as she has a slightly shorter ball to play, has a little more time or a little more angle, she takes her chance. She makes you feel like you’re slow or playing badly when you’re not against other players. She was the best this season, she continues to prove it.
“The goal is going to be to rely on my serve and my return of serve to seize opportunities on her serve and really put her under pressure”
The conditions were of course very different, but what made the difference compared to your victory against Swiatek in Warsaw in July (6-1, 1-6, 6-4)?
On clay, I had a little more time to go forward and put pressure on him. I had served better in Warsaw. Today (Thursday), I did not pass enough first balls. And on my second balls, I did not take enough risks. Every time I went up, she shot a really good pass. I couldn’t do much at the net. She was better than in Warsaw, I was worse.
Despite this loss, you are still in the running for the semi-finals before facing Daria Kasatkina on Saturday. Will it help you sleep better?
It’s going to be a bit hectic all the same, but you know there’s still something to play for and that something is very big. It’s a third pool match, it’s really a big challenge with the aim of qualifying for the semi-finals. Kasatkina varies the game a lot, she uses the whole pitch, different trajectories and she moves well. The goal is going to be to rely on my serve and my return of serve to seize opportunities on her serve and really put her under pressure. Accept that some rallies last a little longer, but always with the mindset of going forward. I can’t wait to prepare for this match because I still have a chance to qualify and because it’s a challenge in relation to his style of play.”