Stan Wawrinka doesn't give up, even if the years pass and take their toll on him. The Swiss champion was eliminated in the first round of the Australian Open 2024, beaten by the French Adrian Mannarino with the score of 6-4 3-6 5-7 6-3 6-0, at the end of a battle lasting 3 hours and 38 minutes.
Wawrinka, winner of the 2014 edition, repeated his first-round elimination in 5 sets in 2023 against Alex Molcan. In the last two sets, the 38-year-old was unable to maintain the pace he had during the match due to an evident physical collapse, and in the press conference he returned to this very topic.
"Yes, it was a tough battle. I was playing well, in difficult conditions against a difficult player. Of course Mannarino, he's playing well. He's in the top 20 and plays his best tennis. Yes, it was a bit tough in the end. I really couldn't push myself any more.
I didn't do the work I wanted in the offseason because I got injured in the last tournament. So it was a bit of a race to get back here. But I'm quite satisfied with the ten days I spent here. I did some good practices. Today the level in general was good. I'm just sad about the outcome, but it is what it is. There was a great atmosphere on this court."
Wawrinka explained how it was really nice to play. There was a lot of support, which he really like. He explained he love coming back in Melbourne. Unfortunately he told he has already lost, but it is always something special to be here, especially with the fans: "I hope it's not my last time here."
The Swiss explained he will see how the year goes. It's just the beginning of the year. Overall ,he is pretty optimistic about where he is right now. Even after the defeat: "I think there are good opportunities for me to keep pushing, keep getting good results and hopefully I can come back next year," he explained.
Wawrinka recalled the win over Nadal in 2014
Stan remembered the title he won in 2014, just ten years ago, by beating Rafael Nadal in the final.
"Yes, of course, it was wonderful, wonderful memories, ten years ago, winning your first Grand Slam here in Australia, it was really something special. I had a fantastic two weeks playing my best tennis, beating Novak and beating Rafa in the final. When you start playing tennis the dream is to play a Slam, so winning one was something really special,” Wawrinka underlined.