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Muguruza relaxed over US Open favourite tag

77   //    29 Aug 2017, 00:48 IST
Garbine Muguruza - cropped
Garbine Muguruza following her first-round win at the US Open

Garbine Muguruza says she feels no additional pressure at the US Open due to her status as many people's tournament favourite.

After winning her second grand slam at Wimbledon in July, Muguruza enjoyed further success in the Western & Southern Open this month, trouncing Simona Halep in the final.

The Spaniard has failed to make it past round two in four previous visits to Flushing Meadows, but her recent form suggests that is likely to change over the coming fortnight.

A 6-0 6-3 victory over Varvara Lepchenko certainly represented a convincing start to Muguruza's campaign in New York and, speaking after her win at Arthur Ashe Stadium, the third seed acknowledged her confidence was high.

"Well, I think it's a high level, of course," she said in a news conference. "I got big wins recently, and a lot of matches in a row that I felt I was playing good and that I won.

"But I said before, coming to the US Open and having a dark past, maybe, in the results, I keep low expectations.

"I take every match as a final. It's very important. I'm happy that this first round went my way."

Asked how she feels about being a favourite, Muguruza replied: "Oh, I don't really care, because I don't feel I'm a favourite here, because I never really played very good, [or] I did play good but just didn't go my way.

"I like it here. I always say that. I love [the] big stage, I love to go on Arthur Ashe, have the crowd enjoying the match.

"I just thought with the matches that I played in the past tournaments, it didn't go my way, as simple as that, because I always come prepared and happy.

"So far I'm just thinking that I'm happy that I'm in second round, and that's what I'm going to take."

Muguruza's next opponent will be either Duan Ying-ying, who defeated Wimbledon junior champion Claire Liu.

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