Stosur turns corner on rough year
Originally published on: 05/09/12 00:00
Stosur reached the quarter-finals at Flushing Meadows on the back of just four wins in her last five tournaments since making the last four at Roland Garros in June, pushing Victoria Azarenka all the way before slipping to a 1-6 6-4 7-6(5) defeat.
“I’m really happy with the way I played out there and I gave it everything I had,” said Stosur, who has lost to the world No.1 in all seven of their past meetings. “[Azarenka] fights very hard every single match she plays and she does it very well. That's probably part of the reason she's No. 1 at the moment.”
Stosur didn’t drop a set en route to the quarter-finals, a welcome run for the 28-year-old Queenslander after enduring disappointing first round losses in the first round of the Australian Open and the Olympics this year. She also failed to surpass the second round at Wimbledon for the ninth time in 10 years.
“It’s been a rough year,” conceded Stosur. “I mean I came off a pretty rough spot before coming to the US hard court season. I have really been able to turn my form around really quickly and come here to New York and play great all of my matches. I guess that's definitely a pleasing aspect of what's happened out there the last couple of weeks.”
Almost a year after stunning Serena Williams to win her first Grand Slam singles crown at Flushing Meadows, the Australian says rediscovering her form in New York gives her confidence that she can repeat the feat on tennis’ biggest stage.
“I think going into this tournament I was struggling a little bit but gaining that momentum and confidence. To really turn it around, you know, in one of the biggest tournaments of the year, that's what we come out here and play for. I think that proves to me that I am capable of doing it. To have another showing here at the Open like this, it for sure gives me confidence to think that maybe one day I can do it again.”
One of the just three players (after Venus Williams and Maria Sharapova) to master Serena in a Grand Slam final, does she think the 14-time Grand Slam champion will add to her 1999, 2002 and 2008 US Open triumphs on Saturday?
“I have to say I think she's the favorite to go on and win,” Stosur added. “I think she's been playing incredible the last few months. If anybody's going to beat her they have to play very well, be aggressive, hit winners, not give her anything, and try and temper her serve. Serena, when she's on, is pretty tough to beat.”