Increasingly recognizable and in tune, Paula Badosa achieved a meritorious victory this Saturday against the American Coco Gauff, sixth best in the world at the moment. The 25-year-old Spaniard won 6-3 and 6-0 (in 1h 11m), and in the next season of the Madrid tournament she will face the Greek Maria Sakkari (3-6, 6-3 and 6- 3 to Rebeka Masarova), another tough nut to crack. In any case, she arrives at a good time for the tennis player from Begur, progressing and recovering good feelings after a difficult period in which the game, rising, has not finished accompanying the results. Wanting to make up for it, Badosa grits his teeth.
“I go step by step. What happened today adds a lot to my level of confidence”, said the Catalan, who currently occupies the 42nd place on the WTA list; “I am proud of myself, I have worked hard and it has been difficult. Tennis life is very difficult. Every week you lose and you have opportunities that you don’t take, or that other times you do. It is a complicated race. Matches like this, on this court and with the people supporting you, make it worth it. Even if it’s in the third round, but it’s special for me after a difficult year.”
If the first day he raffled a very rough duel against Elisabetta Cocciaretto, resolved in three sets and after many curves, Badosa acted as Badosa this time; that is, of that dominant player who, being inspired, arranges and orders the rally. “I have been calm from beginning to end; I was calmer and more adjusted, ”she reasoned; “I have always sinned a lot of being very explosive, very emotional, with a roller coaster of emotions, high levels and not so much. The key to my career is when I have been calmer; little by little, the environment I have is helping me a lot”.
Madrid has a capital importance in Badosa’s career. In 2021 she meant her awakening, that definitive mental push to believe in herself and her possibilities; last year, on the other hand, marked a turning point in reverse. Feeling more observed than usual, she gave in to the pressure and said goodbye in the second match, against the Romanian Simona Halep.
“I didn’t manage it well, but you learn from the bad things that happen to you. This year I am managing it more calmly. When I am well off the track, I reflect it on the inside ”, he pointed out to the journalists; “We want to do very well in Madrid, women don’t have another tournament in our country. Every time I go out on the track, I feel a tickle in my stomach, but it’s difficult not to have it; it was the first or second WTA tournament in my life, when I was 17 years old, my first semifinals of a 1000… It will always be special for me”.
This Saturday she was joined by the Valencian Bernabé Zapata, superior to the British Daniel Evans (6-3 and 6-2), and the very young Mirra Andreeva also progressed. The Russian, who is playing her second professional tournament, was turning 16 and beat Magda Linette by a double 6-3. She will therefore face the Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka in the round of 16. On the other hand, Carlos Alcaraz will face today (not before 8:00 p.m., Movistar and Teledeporte) the Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov. Next, Alejandro Davidovich (Holger Rune) will jump onto the court, followed by Jaume Munar (Matteo Arnaldi) and Roberto Bautista (Karen Khachanov).
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