Kerber’s star continues to rise
Originally published on: 16/04/12 00:00
Two months after marking her rapid recent rise in the game with her first WTA title in Paris, Angelique Kerber made it two and cemented her status as the emerging star of women’s tennis after beating Caroline Wozniacki on the Dane’s home patch in Copenhagen – in straight sets.
The 24-year-old German, who began her surge in form with a semi-final run at the US Open eight months ago, secured her fourth win in five matches against a top ten player to end Wozniacki’s 14-match winning streak at the e-Boks Open.
“It was amazing to play in front of this crowd, even though most of them supported Caroline,” said Kerber. “I felt like I had nothing to lose. If I lost the match, it’s okay against her. It made me take more chances and I’m glad it worked out.”
Kerber was taken to three sets in each of her opening three encounters at the hard court tournament – against Stephanie Foretz Gacon, Britain’s Anne Keothavong and Mona Barthel – but she dropped just 11 games in her final two ties with Jelena Jankovic and Wozniacki.
“I’m happy I was able to raise my level for the last few matches here and I’ve gained a lot of confidence,” added Kerber, who also counts semi-final runs in Auckland, Hobart and Indian Wells on top of her successes in Paris and now Copenhagen this year.
“I’m very motivated to continue working hard. This just adds to it.”
Wozniacki, meanwhile, was keen to point out that her loss was ‘not a disaster’. “You lose matches sometimes, and today was one of those times,” she said. “There’s a new match and new tournament coming, so you go on.”
The world No.6, who began 2012 at the top on the rankings, was enjoying a welcome run of form, having won eight of her last ten matches by virtue of reaching the semi-finals in Miami and returning to the e-Boks Open final for the third straight year. It’s the first time Wozniacki had managed more than two wins on the trot at a tournament since she made the quarter-finals of the Australian Open in January.
Angelique Kerber talks self-belief, staying positive and speeding tickets in the upcoming issue of tennishead magazine, on shelves from April 26th. Click here for more information on how to subscribe to the magazine.