Un­der-pres­sure Ker­ber still feel­ing con­fi­dent

Warwick Daily News - - SPORT -

AN­GELIQUE Ker­ber says she must re­cap­ture the free­dom she felt af­ter her first-round nail-biter at last year’s Aus­tralian Open in or­der to em­u­late her suc­cess at Mel­bourne Park in 2017.

Ker­ber, 28, came back from a match point down against Ja­pan’s Misaki Doi to go on and win her first grand slam.

“That match was re­ally im­por­tant,” the Ger­man said on Thurs­day.

“I still think back about that match, where I was match point down and af­ter that match I had no ex­pec­ta­tions at all ac­tu­ally.

“I was feel­ing free, play­ing good ten­nis and en­joy­ing ev­ery sin­gle match here.

“I think I have to go back to that feel­ing of no ex­pec­ta­tion, play­ing match by match and en­joy­ing the feel­ing be­ing where I am right now.”

Af­ter two losses from three matches in 2017, Ker­ber’s less-than-ideal prepa­ra­tion for this year’s Open has in­creased the pres­sure on the world No.1.

“Of course I’m feel­ing (the pres­sure), but I’ve got used to it from the last few months,” Ker­ber said.

“I’m here top-seeded so it’s a lit­tle dif­fer­ent than last year, but I will try my best.

“I have a lot of con­fi­dence. I know how to win grand slams and I have a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence in the last cou­ple of months, win­ning my se­cond grand slam and a few more ti­tles.

“But this year is a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent. It will be a new chal­lenge for me.”

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