Spanish tennis star Garbine Muguruza admitted she felt the nerves in her Madrid second round match and that contributed to her suffering a surprise defeat on Sunday. Muguruza, seeded at No. 7, entered the match versus Anhelina Kalinina as the favorite but stood no chance as the Ukrainian claimed a 6-3 6-0 win to progress into the round-of-16.
Muguruza has been one of the best players on the WTA Tour for many years but she has never had a major run in Madrid. Muguruza's best result in Madrid came in 2018, when she reached the round-of-16. Muguruza has a number of first and second round exits in Madrid.
Muguruza on the pressure she feels in Madrid
"But in this tournament it's hard for me, difficult for me. Every time that I come, it's like, 'Let's see if this year is the year, if I can control my nerves and emotions'," Muguruza said after exiting Madrid, per Musab Abid.
"When I was on the court I was very stiff. As I said, I had a lot of tension, first set. Second set, i wasn't able to play with my tennis as I do in other tournaments. "I think it's a mix of a lot of expectation, you know, trying to make it a reality, to not let down all the people that are here supporting me.
"I think that's negative for me. Each year I try to face it in a better way. Each year I try to be more interactive with the audience, but the truth is that it generates tension, and I don't manage to bring out my tennis in this tournament."
After beating Ajla Tomljanovic in the first round, Muguruza said she entered the match without much expectation and pressure since it was her first match in a month and a half. Two days later, Muguruza couldn't escape her usual Madrid pressure and she suffered a loss.
Garbine Muguruza spoke frankly today about the pressure of playing at Madrid, her home tournament:
"Each year I try to be more interactive with the audience, but the truth is that it generates tension, & I don't manage to bring out my tennis in this tournament."