By Richard Pagliaro | Tuesday, June 8, 2021
Paula Badosa found herself fighting a battle on multiple fronts in today’s Roland Garros quarterfinal.
The 33rd-ranked Spaniard battled both an inspired Tamara Zidansek and her own spiking nerves ultimately bowing to the 85th-ranked Slovenian 7-5, 4-6, 8-6.
Zidansek, who edged sixth-seeded Bianca Andreescu in her opener, made history as the first Slovenian to reach a Grand Slam semifinal.
Badosa, who committed nine double faults in the match and failed to convert three break-point chances at 6-6 in the final set, credited Zidansek for her play and confessed the jitters got the better of her at times.
“I think she played a good match. I didn’t feel myself in the whole match,” Badosa said. “I’m a little bit sad about that, because I think I played maybe the worst match of the tournament and of the clay season, but sometimes it’s like that.
“I think I was very nervous. I couldn’t control the nerves during the entire match. But at least I fight until the last moment and I had my chances. But, well, credit to her.”
Carrying a WTA-best 17-2 clay-court record, including nine straight clay-court wins, into her maiden major quarterfinal, Badosa battled her heart out, but struggled to swing as freely as she has throughout much of this clay season.
Understandably, both women were tight at times though Badosa said she began feeling it last night.
“I was nervous in the morning. I was nervous yesterday night,” Badosa said. “It’s complicated the first time when you’re in a quarterfinals. When you want it so, so much, maybe sometimes it’s a little bit too much, and I was putting a little bit too much pressure on myself. I think that’s a little bit the next time, if I have another opportunity like this, I will try to change.
“But, yeah, maybe I could change the way that I went into the match. Of course the nerves are always there, but I think today was a little bit too much.”
Photo credit: Roland Garros Facebook