Svi­tolina says best prepa­ra­tion on clay in years not adding to pres­sure

Daily Messenger - - Sportlight -

LON­DON: Elina Svi­tolina said her ex­tended prepa­ra­tion for the clay­court swing af­ter opt­ing out of the U.S. Open was not a guar­an­tee of suc­cess and she will not put her­self un­der pres­sure ahead of the French Open this month.

Svi­tolina beat Marie Bouzkova to seize her first ti­tle of the sea­son at the Mon­ter­rey Open in Mex­ico in March be­fore the sea­son was sus­pended due to the novel coro­n­avirus pan­demic.

The world num­ber six then joined a num­ber of top play­ers in opt­ing out of the U.S. Open and made her re­turn at the Ital­ian Open on Wed­nes­day, where she beat Rus­sia's Anas­ta­sia Pav­lyuchenkov­a 6-3 7-6(4).

"For sure, it was dif­fer­ent as I had prob­a­bly the long­est prepa­ra­tion ever for the clay­court (sea­son)... To be fair I feel quite com­fort­able or at least I'm giv­ing my­self a good chance to move bet­ter," two-times Rome win­ner Svi­tolina told re­porters. "I try to not put so much pres­sure on my­self, that oth­ers were not able to play on clay, be­cause it's im­por­tant to fo­cus on your game and try to play as good as you can.

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