Paula Badosa is now in Madrid. The Spaniard comes into the tournament hoping to enjoy herself and to play her best tennis at a Caja Mágica that harbours such great memories for her. Her incredible performance here in 2021, when she became the only Spanish woman to reach the Mutua Madrid Open semi-finals, is still fresh in the minds of anyone that was lucky enough to witness it.
Badosa enjoys playing on clay and is looking for her big break in the Spanish capital. The former Junior French Open champion is bidding for a title in Madrid that would allow her to close the gap on the top 10, which she dropped out of a year and a half ago. “I’ve been doing some great work, hopefully the turning point in the season will come in Madrid”.
After reaching the quarter-finals in Charleston and Stuttgart, the opening tournaments on the clay swing, Paula’s confidence is on the rise as she arrives in the Spanish capital. She is in an optimistic yet prudent mood, aware that her game is good enough to stand up to any player on tour.
“In matches against the best in the world I’m lacking a bit of luck for them to fall to me”, explained the Catalonian, who managed to push world No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka to the limit in her last match before the tournament. “My level’s good and I’m excited to play. Hopefully this week those matches go my way.”
The 25-year-old Spaniard is all too aware that the standard at the tournament is sky high and that, while victory is the ultimate goal, it is far from easy and that her priority is to keep improving. “I’m very competitive, I love winning, I’d like to be in the semi-finals, but I don’t think that’s what I should be focusing on right now, I have to focus on getting back to my best mentally, it’s a difficult but amazing week”.
The current world number 42 arrives in the capital as the highest ranked Spanish woman and she is chomping at the bit to play in the Manolo Santana Stadium after her tough second-round loss last year against Simona Halep.
Paula will play her opener in that round against Elisabetta Cocciaretto, who claimed a worthy two-set win (6-3, 7-5) in a tight match against Czech player Barbora Strycova that lasted over two hours. Paula’s moment has arrived, it is time for her to enjoy herself once again.