"I didn't want to be there" - Maria Sakkari opens up about 'horrible' feeling of not being able to fight on court and overcoming mental slump

Maria Sakkari spoke about her recent struggles on the court
Maria Sakkari spoke about her recent struggles on the court

Maria Sakkari recently opened up about her struggles last season. She admitted that things got so so bad that she didn't want to be on the court.

Sakkari booked her place in the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 victory over Anhelina Kalinina. It was the second successive match in which she has fought back from a set down.

The World No. 7 was asked in her post-match press conference if there were moments when she found it hard to fight. She responded by mentioning a few tournaments from last season, namely the Madrid Open and the Silicon Valley Classic, in which she struggled to the extent that she couldn't even be on the court.

"Yeah. I mean, last year there were a couple of weeks, maybe more. One of them was San Jose, I just couldn't be on the court. I wanted, but I couldn't. It's not like I was going on the court to tank the match. I didn't want to be there. It's just I couldn't. Madrid I was also struggling big time," Maria Sakkari said.
"I mean, there were a few, yes, and I'm a human being. I think I'm allowed also to have those weeks," she added.

Maria Sakkari to face Karolina Pliskova in BNP Paribas Open 4th round

Maria Sakkari in action at the BNP Paribas Open
Maria Sakkari in action at the BNP Paribas Open

After overcoming Kalinina, Maria Sakkari will next face 17th seed Karolina Pliskova in the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open. Pliskova booked her place in the Round of 16 with a 6-1, 7-5 win over 11th seed Veronika Kudermetova.

Pliskova leads 3-2 in the head-to-head against the Greek and recently thrashed her 6-1, 6-2 in the second round of the Dubai Tennis Championships.

Sakkari admitted that the match would be tough and that she would have to reduce her unforced errors given the Czech's big-serving and hard-hitting game.

"Well, I think it's going to be tough. Obviously we played in Dubai, which is a horrible court for my game, and very good for her. It's going to be tough. If it's warm, because the ball flies and the ball, you know, flies through the air actually very fast," she said.
"But, you know, from now on, like even in the first rounds like against Shelby, you cannot expect an easy match. Especially against someone like Pliskova, she's serving big, and she likes, you know, to hit the ball hard, I have to for sure reduce my unforced errors. That won't be accepted against her," she added.

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