Maria Sakkari said making two Grand Slam semifinals this year and then ending her season at thr WTA Finals was incredible. Sakkari, 26, made a couple of changes in her approach to the game and it paid off. "Reaching my first two Grand Slam semi-finals in one season has been incredible and ending the season in Guadalajara at the WTA Finals really was a dream come true.
But it did not happen by mistake," Sakkari wrote for Player's Voice. "Before this year, I would say that sometimes I was a little too hard and negative on myself. This season, with the help of surrounding myself with the right people, I’ve concentrated on making my mindset much more positive by manifesting kinder thoughts.
I think my results have benefited from that, so I would definitely say that being nice to yourself is always a good idea."
Sakkari also made a top-10 debut
Sakkari, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 6 in the world, thinks it's nice for Greece two have two top-10 players.
"My ranking is a reflection of that - I broke into the Top 10 when I was 26 and I think having a breakthrough at this age requires having a different sort of mentality. When you are young and at the early stages of your career, you’re fearless - you don’t think and you just play.
At 26, you are a lot more mature, a lot more aware and you have to handle things differently. So that’s why this milestone felt even more special for me. Of course, being the first Greek female tennis player to ever achieve this made it even better.
It’s a big thing for myself, my family and my country, and with Stefanos [Tsitsipas] in the Top 10 for guys too, it’s just a very nice thing for Greece," Sakkari added.