After cruising past Yanina Wickmayer (6/2, 6/2) in the first round of the US Open, Sofia Kenin, the 2020 Australian Open champion, has confessed that her secret weapon behind winning important matches, especially at Grand Slams, is letting all her emotions out before entering the court.
And the American pointed out that she does that by crying. Even before the Wickmayer clash, Kenin felt overwhelmed by emotions, so she resorted to her old habit. "Crying. That's what I did. I mean, I had to let it out (...) I wasn't feeling well.
I just tried to tell myself, big targets. Don't go for too much. First-round, Grand Slam, it's new. A lot of emotions,” Kenin said during her post-match press conference. “I just felt a little more emotional, everything.
Had to let it out, had to let off some steam before the match. I handled it really well."
Sofia Kenin cried before every match at the 2020 Australian Open
Kenin is the only singles Grand Slam winner from the WTA ranking in 2020, and she is aiming for her second in a row at the US Open.
Talking about her crying habit, she affirmed that she let tears flowing out before every single match on her road to the Melbourne crown. "That's not the answer that people would like to hear, but everyone knows in Aussie I was crying every day before my matches.
It's fine. It worked,” said Kenin. Talking about her performance on the court in the first US Open round, Sofia was happy with the way she played. "I was just really nervous. I had to let it out and just regroup and just tell myself, it's the first match.
Just try to get a nice groove, feel the court. I just felt like I was playing really well. Of course, I think it's a really good win, a good boost for my confidence… I played really well. I focused on the key elements of the game.
Obviously, there are no more tears." Sofia Kenin’s next opponent is Leylah Fernandez, who just earned her first Grand Slam win in her entire career by dispatching Vera Zvonareva in straight sets. "With Leylah, I have practiced a few times, so I kind of know her game more or less.
She is a young rising star, playing some really good tennis. It's going to be a good matchup, and hopefully, I can do well,” Kenin concluded.