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Kiki's Marrakech Blog: No Limits

Get into the mind of one of the WTA's brightest young stars after she dug very, very deep to win her opener in Marrakech - that and more in Kristina Mladenovic's latest WTA Blog...

Published April 23, 2013 12:00

Kristina Mladenovic

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Bonjour depuis Marrakech,

I hope everyone had a great day - mine was epic but successful!

Let's talk about my match, as it was the highlight of my day..

I won 64 46 64 against Cadantu in 2h30 of play. It was such a difficult match. As I told you yesterday, I had almost no time to adapt myself to these new conditions, and it's also never easy to play your first match at a tournament against a qualifier or lucky loser - it means your opponent has already played three matches, which in this case is an advantage!

For example, here we're at a little bit of an altitude and the balls are flying, so we should adjust our strings, but I didn't have time with yesterday's short practice session to figure out the right racquet to use in my match. I was switching racquets a few times to find the best one! :)

At the beginning of the match I was just trying to play solid and find my rhythm. As the match went on and on I felt better and better and could apply my aggressive game.. We had such long games at the end of the first set, which was very intense, physically. I was happy to win this one 6/4 actually!

In the second set I had a lead of 3/1 but then had a couple of games where I felt tired and a bit dizzy, probably because of the heat. I lost my concentration and my opponent took the opportunity to come back and win the second set 6/4.

Then the third set started.. I started to feel really tired and couldn't put the same intensity to produce my tennis. I was more defensive and lost the important points - and my opponent played better.

2/4, 15/40 down in the third set.. I was definitely in a bad situation with the scoreboard; but the worst thing was from that moment I got cramps in my right calf and thigh!!!!!!! Everybody around the court was, I guess, expecting me to lose this match - I say that because I was the first one to think, 'Oh my God, how am I gonna do this now?' At that point I was serving and just tried to serve some big serves and save that game to at least make it to 3/4.. which happened!

Then how did I come back and win three more games in a row at the same time as managing cramps? I still don't know myself.. but I remember just fighting and digging deep inside of me on each point. My mental strength has always been a weapon and I just tried to remember that I have won many matches where I was down with the score, so why not another one? The cramps were there but between points I tried to relax and stretch, and during points I was playing very aggressively to make shorter points. I had some great winners and some big serves at the end of the match, which really helped me a lot.

I'm very happy to have gotten through this one!

When I went off the court I had some tears of joy and pain. It was a great battle.. we also train hard for those kinds of emotions, to prove to ourselves there are no limits in our minds.

A few minutes after we shook hands I started to cramp more and I had to come back to the locker room with the wheelchair.. that was the first time that happened to me!

I'm very thankful to Nicky the physio. She really took care of me. She did a long ice massage, some stretching, and she gave me all I needed to recover. I spent two hours in the physio room to do my recovery.. that's basically what I did the rest of my afternoon. It was mandatory!

After all of that I came back to the hotel, had some rest, then prepared for the dinner and players party. It was a very enjoyable night. We had a lot of fun with the girls. We wore those Moroccan dresses and took a lot of pictures. The buffet was great - I really liked the food! I think the party was really successful, good music, great atmosphere.. I hope to have some pictures to show you soon. And also I'm looking forward to answering some of your questions... I'll answer some tomorrow!!

Tomorrow I'm only scheduled for doubles. This week I'm playing with my good friend, Petra Martic. I always have fun playing with her.

Now, it's time to go to sleep..

Sweet dreams and see you tomorrow!

Kiki

Kiki's Marrakech Blog: Fed Cup Pride 

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