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Tennis: Defeats before Wimbledon – Kerber wants to “get everything out of it”

Tennis: Defeats before Wimbledon – Kerber wants to “get everything out of it”
Tennis: Defeats before Wimbledon – Kerber wants to “get everything out of it”

Kerber returns to Wimbledon, where she won six years ago, without a sense of achievement. This time, her performance is accompanied by enormous skepticism.

When Angelique Kerber enters the spruced-up Wimbledon facility after the disappointments of the past few weeks, there might be a lot on her mind.

There were the first-round defeats in Berlin and Bad Homburg, which meant that her preparation for the grass court classic that begins on Monday was a complete failure. But there was also her great triumph, which will always make this historic place special for her. In 2018, she celebrated the title at Wimbledon when she beat tennis star Serena Williams. Two years earlier, she had already been in the final.

“Not a nice feeling”

For the first time, Kerber will compete in Wimbledon as a mother. The prospects of success like in the past are a long way off – and yet she is not giving up yet. “Of course it is sad and disappointing that I am now out in the first round, especially here in Bad Homburg,” said the 36-year-old after losing 5:7, 3:6 to the Russian talent Diana Schneider exactly one week before the start of the grass classic.

“Nevertheless, I will try to take the positives with me and look towards Wimbledon and try to get everything out of it,” said Kerber, “but of course it’s not a nice feeling when you lose at home in the first round.” She openly admitted that she made “too many simple mistakes” in the decisive moments against the Russian, who is 16 years younger than her. “I felt good. I prepared well, I did everything I could to play well,” she said. And yet it wasn’t enough.

Since her comeback around the turn of the year, when the 2016 Australian Open and US Open winner traveled with her daughter Liana, she had been looking forward to the grass season. She wanted to attack again on her favorite surface. At the start of the short season, she reassured everyone that she did not want to put “any pressure” on herself. But she also said confidently: “I know that I can play well.” And: “Grass is simply my surface.”

Target missed before Wimbledon

The home crowd in Berlin and Bad Homburg, where she is also a tournament ambassador, should give her an additional boost. But now she will go into her first round match in Wimbledon without a sense of success on the green surface. She has clearly missed her goal of playing as many matches on grass as possible. In Berlin, Kerber lost her opening match in three sets to Linda Noskova (19) – like the Russian Schneider (20), the Czech also comes from a different generation.

The former head of women’s tennis in Germany, Barbara Rittner, still thinks Kerber is an unpleasant opponent and has high hopes for her. “Nobody wants to play against Angie at Wimbledon,” said the Berlin tournament director. “She has recently presented herself in excellent condition. Both in terms of her game and her fitness. She knows Wimbledon, she loves the surface and of course she needs a bit of luck in the draw.”

Many defeats after maternity leave

In 2021, Kerber achieved her best Grand Slam result since her third Grand Slam title in 2018 by reaching the semifinals at Wimbledon. This year, she has not made it through a Grand Slam round at either the Australian Open or the French Open. If she is eliminated at the start of Wimbledon, Liana will help her to digest the defeat. “That feeling when you’ve lost doesn’t last as long anymore,” said the young mother: “Tennis has moved to second place. Someone else is in first place.”

Source: Stern

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