Madison Keys, the No. 20 seed, advanced to the second round of the 2023 French Open by defeating Estonian Kaia Kanepi 6-1, 3-6, 6-1 on Monday (May 29) at Roland-Garros in Paris.
With the win, Keys improved to 35-5 in first-round Grand Slam matches. She will now face the American qualifier Kayla Day in the next round in her bid for her first Grand Slam title.
In a post-match press conference, Madison Keys, 28, revealed that her compatriot Frances Tiafoe, 25, jokingly teases her by calling her "mom." Despite their small age difference, Tiafoe enjoys making her feel older by jokingly reminiscing about watching her on TV when he was a child.
"Yeah. Usually it's "mom." I always remind him that I'm not that much older than him, but he'll always say things like, Oh, I remember watching you on TV when I was a kid. I'm, like, I'm not that much older than you," Keys said.
Madison Keys added that she finds it amusing and always playfully reminds him that he will eventually experience the same feeling.
"I think at this point he just likes to do it to make me feel old. I always tell him he will find out one day (laughing)," Keys said.
"I think really just trying to focus on what I did well in the first set" - Madison Keys on coming back from a set down
Madison Keys discussed her strategy for coming back from a set behind in her match against Kaia Kanepi. She emphasized the importance of replicating the successful aspects of her game from the first set, acknowledging that she was giving Kanepi short balls, allowing her opponent to take control in the second set.
"I think really just trying to focus on what I did well in the first set and honestly just trying to replicate that. I think I was kind of giving her a lot of kind of short balls to dictate and things like that, which she kind of just got ahead very early in the second set, and it was hard to catch back up," Madison Keys said.
To turn the match around, Keys aimed to focus on the early games of the third set, ensuring she achieved depth in her shots and took control of the points.
"So really focusing on those first few games of the third set, really trying to make sure that I was getting my depth and trying to control the point early on," she said.
The American's second-round match against Kayla Day will take place on Wednesday (May 31).