Aryna Sabalenka will be back in action this week at the WTA 1000 in Dubai after winning the Australian Open 2023. The Belarusian tennis player will be the number 2 seed behind Iga Swiatek, fresh winner of Doha.
This will be the first tournament for her after her victory in Australia, and she will clearly be called upon to confirm the great start to the season which also saw her triumph in the Adelaide tournament.
During an interview with Rfi, she told of the happiness she felt for her first Grand Slam title, but Aryna is very clear that in order for the season to continue as it began, her inner fire must not go out.
Aryna Sabalenka has a clear goal
Sabalenka told: "At first I couldn't believe it. For the whole next week after that, I thought: Yeah, I can't believe it, it happened. I was constantly having an internal conversation that made me realize it had happened. It's amazing. This made me feel it gives me more motivation to keep working hard and get back to the feeling I had in Australia."
Shortly after the victory, Sabalenka said she also went through painful defeats: "It was the best moment of my life, so far. I've gone through very difficult moments this last year, but they say that everything happens for a reason, I just couldn't understand why.
What did I do wrong to deserve this? Now that I have it, I finally get it. I wouldn't have won a Grand Slam without having a hard time, I would definitely keep screaming or crying on the court instead of playing tennis. That's why I've become a different player, I've become calmer on the court, I've started to respect myself a little more. Today I believe in myself more, that's what helped me."
The Belarusian will make her debut in the first round in Dubai against Jil Teichmann and Anastasia Potapova.