Sakkari: “I was nervous, but I’m happy that I succeeded”

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Relieved that she won after three consecutive eliminations, she said Maria Sakkari after qualifying for the second round of the Australian Open thanks to 6-4 and 6-1, against Nao Himbino (Japan, No 92).

You’re always nervous before the first round of a Grand Slam, especially on this court. You want to play well, you know that when you are top seed you will play against players who will do their best against you. I had lost my last three Grand Slam first round matches so for me it was a difficult match emotionally, but I’m very happy that I managed to do the job right and at least have a good second set“, said the 28-year-old Greek tennis player.

After winning the first set I was getting closer to victory and I was feeling better about my game. In a sense I was relieved to be able to take the first set without playing my best tennis. Sometimes you have to win in a bad way, but this second set was certainly not bad” added the world number 8.

Regarding her preparation for the … Australian summer, she said:I am used to the heat, having grown up in Greece. I like athletics, I run a lot, I did a lot of weights and jumps, but I also spent a lot of hours on the court, more than usual. I had a very good preparation and I feel young and strong. I hope to stay here as long as I can».

Finally, about how she will make use of the two-day rest she has until the next match, she said:I sleep a lot (laughs), that’s something we all need. Melbourne has the best coffee shops so I’ll definitely go for a coffee. I will also have dinner, you have great restaurants here. Not much, I’m open to suggestions if there’s anything I can do to get my mind off it».

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