Daria is con­fi­dent on clay

Sport360 - - Italian Open - By Reem Abulleil @ReemAbulleil reemabulleil@sport360.com

Daria Kasatk­ina ad­mits she’s feel­ing con­fi­dent this clay sea­son but isn’t bur­den­ing her­self with ex­pec­ta­tions ahead of the French Open.

The Rus­sian No. 15 seed was un­fazed by the rain and heavy con­di­tions that struck Rome yes­ter­day and was ruth­less in her 6-0, 6-4 open­ing round vic­tory over Aus­tralian-Croa­t­ian Ajla Toml­janovic.

“Af­ter years, three years on tour, you get used to this,” Kasatk­ina told Sport3600 af­ter her win, laugh­ing at the idea of feel­ing al­ready ex­pe­ri­enced on tour at the age of 21.

“I was ready, the fore­cast was ex­pected since three days, I was ex­pect­ing the rain and I was sit­ting and re­lax­ing be­fore the match and try­ing to fo­cus.”

Kasatk­ina, who made back-to­back fi­nals in Dubai and In­dian Wells, is hav­ing a stel­lar 2018 cam­paign and will be one of the ones to watch at Roland Gar­ros this month.

She says that the se­cret to her good form against Toml­janovic yes­ter­day was feel­ing free­dom in her va­ri­ety of shots in a way that re­minded her of her ju­nior days.

“To­day I felt a lit­tle bit like when I was a ju­nior, the way I was play­ing, like spin, drop shot, slice… be­cause it was pretty slow so I had a lit­tle bit more time. I didn’t have a warm-up be­fore the match but I felt pretty good,” said Kasatk­ina.

Asked if she feels she can go deep at the French Open, she added: “When you think about these things it’s not re­ally good. Of course I’m con­fi­dent and I want to go fur­ther es­pe­cially at such big tour­na­ments but I’m also not ex­pect­ing from my­self huge things.

“I’m just try­ing to go on court and en­joy every sec­ond.”

Look­ing ahead: Daria Kasatk­ina.

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