It was the grass season that gave Angelique Kerber a shake. The former world number one went through tough and intense months before returning to win a WTA title at the Bad Homburg Open and play a Grand Slam semi-final at Wimbledon.
A great Ashleigh Barty, who then won the tournament for the first time in her career, beat her on the lawns of the All England Club. For Kerber then came the semifinals in Cincinnati, the round of 16 at the US Open and the quarter-finals in Indian Wells.
In the two WTA 1000s you lost against the future winners of the event, Barty and Paula Badoda respectively; while in New York she was eliminated by finalist Leylah Fernandez.
In the In The Art of Drive column on Porsche’s official website, Kerber talked about her ambitions and her mentality. “As a tennis player, I am alone on the pitch. So many things affect and affect you: the pressure, the opponent, the next shot and the expectations. Over the years I have learned to deal with pressure and improve my mental strength.
Kerber tells himself: “Winning Wimbledon was my dream”
Just before entering the court, I do breathing exercises to calm myself down. It was my grandparents who taught me: set goals and work hard, even when things go wrong. Winning Wimbledon was my childhood dream.
In 2018, after more than 10 years of hard work, I finally made it. You don’t get success like that after just two weeks of playing, but through perseverance and hard work. You need this mental and physical strength to overcome difficulties.
2016 and 2018 were undoubtedly two very special years in my career. However, there have also been a lot of setbacks I’ve had to face in the past few years. 2017 wasn’t easy. I have lost a lot of games and I was not in the best shape.
Of course, you start getting criticized and people no longer believe in you. But it is precisely in these difficult moments that I find my strength. My goal is to come back even stronger. I want to show everyone and especially myself that I can do it.
I don’t care what people write about me, because I know where I want to go and focus on the path. I can advise everyone to draw strength from defeats, to always believe in themselves; no matter what others say. I had to learn this too and in the end it made me the person I am today. “