Katie Voly-nets her way into a new career chapter
AMERICAN qualifier Katie Volynets achieved arguably the win of her career yesterday at the Australian Open, defeating ninth seed Veronika Kudermetova 6-4, 2-6, 6-2.
Not only was it Volynets’ first time defeating a top 10 opponent, but the win also sees her into the third round of a Grand Slam for the first time.
She had match point three times, but was able to remain calm and prevail over Kudermetova.
“I literally have the chills because the fans here are just incredible. I’ve never played in a stadium this packed and that many people keeping the energy up for me, so that’s awesome,” she said post match.
She noted that that once she hit match point she just tried to remain calm and not get overawed by the situation.
“Well suddenly when you get match point it’s like ‘oh wow I have match point against number nine in the world’ and I was trying to take deep breaths and keep going for it on the match point and leaving the rest up to whatever’s meant to happen,” she said.
On reaching the milestone of making the third round and beating a top ten opponent both for the first time, Volynets gave all the credit to her team, especially recently appointed coach Henner Nehles.
“I really think all the credit goes to my team” Volynets said.
“My coach Henner, he’s here, we just started working in September and I’ve never felt this excited to work with a coach before. We have the big picture in mind, which excites me so much and it’s really cool to see that only a few months of work with Henner has really benefited my mentality, my game, my identity as a person.”
In only a few months, Volynets has already seen an improvement in her game.
“I think in the last two months with Henner and with my team we’ve definitely put a lot of work into fitness and a lot of work into movement, so I believe I am moving differently and I’m really eager to move forward into the court and keep on working on those things,” she said.
The seeds keep coming for Volynets, who has to face 23rd seed Shuai Zhang in the third round.