Karen Khachanov continued his brilliant run at the 2023 Australian Open, reaching the semifinals of the tournament for the first time in his career.
The Russian pro also reached the second successive semifinal of his career at the Grand Slam level. Khachanov had earlier reached the final four at the 2022 US Open, losing to Casper Ruud in four sets 6-7(5), 2-6, 7-5, 2-6 in New York.
In Melbourne, he was leading two sets to love and 3-0 in the third when Sebastian Korda decided to retire from their quarterfinal encounter citing a wrist injury. In his post-match interview, the World No. 20 revealed that he reinvented himself after his drop in form after the initial burst in 2018, where he reached a career-high World No. 11 ranking.
The years since have seen the Russian stay consistent, but only around the 20-30 spots. But now, Khachanov is of the opinion that he has the belief to finally take the next step.
"I think I reinvented myself. I always believe in myself but there are always ups and downs and sometimes when you have that great result, it shows you what you're capable of," the Russian said.
Khachanov further stated that his belief and self-confidence grew after the result at Flushing Meadows, a trait that he hopes to carry forward into the future in both his personal and professional lives.
"This belief and self-confidence appear much stronger after the US Open. So, I made it to the semifinals here already and I just hope to continue that way, to grow as a person and as a sportsman," he added.
The 2022 US Open run helped show him what he was capable at his very best, says Karen Khachanov
While analyzing his win over Sebastian Korda, Karen Khachanov pointed out that consistency was the key factor to his success at the 2023 Australian Open. In his post-match press conference, he touched on how he has started focusing on the "small things" during his matches, which has helped him reach the semifinals Down Under for the first time.
"Yeah, like you mentioned, consistency (smiling). I mean, I would say it's all the details, you know, all the small things that you put together in order to kind of do those steps forward and to, yeah, to keep achieving those goals which are set," Karen Khachanov said.
The 26-year-old also admitted that reaching the last four at Flushing Meadows gave him extra confidence and showed him what he can do when he plays his best tennis.
"So at the end of the day, I think the first semifinals which I did in US Open, that gave me extra boost and extra confidence, you know, to showed where I really am, you know, and what I can do when I'm at my best and how can I be more consistent with that form. So I think all those things together, they push me to where I am right now," he added.