Sports Tennis

Coach Elise Mertens: “She is still not ready to be a top 10 player to be”

Elise Mertens (WTA-14), tying the performance together in the WTA-circuit. The 22-year-old Limburg explained Thursday the number 3 of the world, Sloane Stephens, over the knee and reached the quarter-finals of the WTA tournament of Cincinnati. Dieter Kindlmann, her new coach, is proud of his poulain, but also remains sober: “She is still not ready to be a top 10 player.”

“If you take a closer look at she has, except her victory against Svitolina at the Australian Open, fairly dry lost against top 10 players”, explained the German at a press conference for coaches, in the margin of the tournament. “Halep and Konta (an ex-top 10 player) didn’t chip very of her. Patience is not her strongest quality. But she has me under the arm taken. Elise has rapidly climbed to the 15th place on the WTA rankings. She is even in the top 10 in the race to the Masters in Singapore this autumn. But according to me she is not ready yet for a full-fledged top 10 player.”

Kindlmann, former sparring partner of Maria Sharapova and ex-coach of Madison Keys – who he last year to the finals of the US Open led – argues that Mertens on some of the levels progression. “My main goal is that they are in good health and in optimal condition. I’m a big fan of linear progression, in small steps, but always in the right direction. I love structure. Therefore, I will be satisfied if Elise the year closes on the 11th or 12th place. I know that people will wonder why, as they are already 8th in the race to the Finals. But if it goes too fast, we risk to get some things out of the eye to lose. At the moment Elise is so determined to succeed. Therefore, I value her. They always want to make progress. But they should not be allowed to vergalopperen. It is but in a uniform way to work, during a long period of time, that we the results they get”, he concluded.

Mertens takes the Friday against the 28-year-old Petra Kvitova (WTA-6), which this year all five titles wegkaapte, for a place in the semi-finals in Cincinnati.

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