Caroline Garcia: ‘I had a hard time controlling my emotions’ after finishing eighth at the Australian Open

“How do you feel after this defeat?
I was very disappointed to lose. You go out on the court to play well, to try to win, and even though there were opportunities in the first set, I didn’t. I was having trouble controlling my emotions, keeping them in check and getting my game together. I haven’t really been able to free myself and move forward.

I can’t say it’s a huge surprise, I’ve struggled to do this in my previous encounters and often won by struggling and trying to do things differently. Today was not enough. He played really well, he was solid, he took the match at the right time. What I can’t do.

“There’s also pressure on yourself, my expectations are quite high now and sometimes, maybe that’s where I shoot myself in the foot. »

There is disappointment after this game, what went wrong?
It’s hard to say. When you walk off the field losing a game, you feel like you didn’t do anything right when it wasn’t completely fair. My opponent played his match, he was solid, always close, even with my double-break lead. It was 7-6, 6-4 when I had to go first from two, which is still one of my usual strengths, so it’s not easy. It’s a bit annoying that I can’t free myself, I can’t play my game, I can’t change direction, I can’t move forward. I haven’t climbed much and that’s what worries me the most. But there were positive points, not everything to throw away, even if I want to throw everything in the trash now, you also have to digest to be more clear about the good performance of the tournament.

Did that status (No. 4) bother you before the Australian Open?
I think this is a setting I’m less comfortable with and I need to keep working on it to get a better handle on it. This is a practice to take in order to free myself more and more and succeed in having the right state of mind. There’s also the pressure you put on yourself, now my expectations are pretty high and sometimes, maybe I’m shooting myself in the foot here. We have to find the right balance between what I want to produce on the court and how I can execute it.

How do you recover from these types of matches?
I think I need some time now. It’s fresh… It still hurts and it’s still hard to get off. I think in Grand Slams it takes longer to recover from such a defeat and you have to analyze well what went wrong and how to work to avoid it happening again. We always learn from our defeats and try to do better next time. Sometimes it’s hard, sometimes it’s less, it depends on what went wrong, but you should always try to learn from your mistakes.

“When I start making mistakes or when things don’t go well in practice, I have to be able to release the ballast, relax, and execute my game better. »

Swiatek talked about his mental state, Gauff cried in front of the microphones, the player who mastered his nerves the best will win the tournament?
Two weeks is a long time, you have to be able to keep all your emotions under control. Sometimes you live in your own world, focusing on your tennis, doing what you have to do, trying to start from scratch every day, forgetting everything that’s happening, that it’s a Grand Slam and you’re moving on. quarter, semi, final…

In the past, some have managed to win like this, maybe this year will be the same. After that, there are still girls like Sabalenka or Pliskova, players with experience, but also more surprising players than we expected there. Who will win? Frankly, now I don’t care at all (laughs).

Can we say it’s a setback?
They are burying me (laughs)! Yes, I was disappointed to lose in the round of 16. Yes, I wanted to go further. I wouldn’t say that there weren’t any surprises compared to the previous matches, but there were challenges, things that didn’t go smoothly and it cost me. I didn’t want to lose and I thought I could keep improving.

Would this call something into question in your preparation?
No, when I start to make mistakes or when things don’t go well in practice, I need to be able to let go of the ballast, relax, put my game more in place. Lower my expectations a bit compared to what I want to do. But defeat does not put everything into question.

Were you more disappointed after losing in the round of 16 here or in the semifinals at the US Open?
Obviously, at this point, T is the same! »

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *