FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – With all the talk of Serena, Sloane, Caroline, and Victoria (both of them) at this year’s US Open, some of dark horse candidates are getting overlooked.
Such as No. 8 seed Angelique Kerber, who is cruising along to the third round after her win over Canadian Eugenie Bouchard, 6‑4, 2‑6, 6‑3.
“I’m feeling good I won the close match,” she said. “It was not easy. She was playing very good from the first point. She is very young and talented player.
“It was not easy for me until the last point. I needed to give everything I had today. It was tough, but I’m very happy that I am in the third round now.”
The German, who went to the 2011 Semi-Finals of the US Open and the Semi-Finals of Wimbledon last year, has an outside shot to make some real noise at the end of next week, even though she had to go three sets today.
“I don’t know what happened there, but I think there was a little upset with my concentration, you know,” she said of her second set. “I was not focused enough after I won the first game in the second set. After that I was not anymore on court. I was, I don’t know, with my focus around but not on the court.
“I was trying to come back, but then it was too late in the second set. And, yeah, and then I take the change break and coming back in the third set and just try to be there from the first point and try to focusing from point to point.
“I think it works well at the end.”
And it’s important for her to be on her game, because a lot is expected of her this year, where some think she may make her big move.
“I feel the pressure, but right now I’m not thinking about this,” she said. “I mean, when the year started I feel the pressure more. I think I did the pressure more myself, you know, to go to the tournaments and wanted to win every match.
“But right now I will just enjoy it again and having fun out there. Try to give my best and not thinking about pressure, about points, about rankings, nothing. I will just try to give my best and play my tennis and, yeah, and feel good.”
And now that the hiccup is out of the way, it’s time to move forward in what she dubs is her favorite tournament.
“Everything started for me here in my career,” Kerber said. “It’s always special when I’m coming back. I have such great memories.
“I just take the positive energy from here and also from Manhattan. And, yeah, it’s a great city, great tournament, and I really enjoy my stay always here.”
Keep an eye out.