FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Caroline Wozniacki now has a real challenge. Not only does she have the tough task of winning her first major and not only is expectations sky high for her at this US Open, the Great Dane also has to keep up with her boyfriend US Golf Open Champion Rory McIlroy.
“Definitely trying to keep up,” she said with that sunshine smile. “I’ll definitely do my best, but I still have six tough matches to go, so it will not be easy.
“You know, he has something I’m looking for and I have something he’s looking for. He wants to be No. 1. So it’s good to have something on each other.”
With the field wide open this year with Kim Clijsters out of the tournament, this may be the 21 year-old’s year to win the Open. Of course when you have played at a high level over the past few years and not captured a major crown, questions do arise about the ability to take it all even a player has been ranked No. 1 for the past 46 weeks.
But Wozniacki doesn’t seem to be phased by the questions. In fact see seems amused.
“I won six tournaments this year already,” she said. “You know, I should definitely not be complaining. I’m in a good position. I’m in a good spot. I’m happy, healthy, and I can go out there and compete. That’s what’s most important.
“I’m winning a lot of matches, which is why we practice. We practice to win. Yeah, I’ve won a lot of matches, and that’s what satisfies me.”
But a US Open win would be the ultimate for the Danish Princess. And to accomplish that she considered hiring Martina Navratilova as her coach, but took on a male mystery coach for these two weeks.
She’s not revealing who that person could be.
“Yeah, well, I have to respect him as well,” she said. “So if he wants to be in the background and not have his name out, I have to respect that. He’s been watching me play and telling me a few things. It’s good. It’s working well.”
It’s seems to be working for Wozniacki as she comes off her fourth straight title in New Haven. It’s an event she particularly enjoys because of the similar age bracket of the students moving in to Yale.
“It felt very good being there,” she said. “I think that’s why I play well there. There are a lot of young people around, a lot going on. It’s nice to see them move into their dorms with their mattresses. It’s definitely a cool feeling. It feels like you’re part of it actually the week that you’re there. Definitely.”
Today when she disposed unseeded Llagostera Vives in straight sets, 6-3 6-1, she had the same confidence she exuded in Connecticut last week. Something she hopes holds throughout the Open.
“They can say what they want,” she said. “I’m the type of player I am. I’ve won a lot of tournaments. I’m No. 1 in the world, and of course I can still improve. There are a lot of things to my game I can still improve, but everyone can.
“You know, I’m on the right track. I just go out there and I play the way I do, and, you know, hopefully that’s good enough.”
Well, she has to keep Rory happy.