Cincinnati, Ohio — If there’s one thing Jessica Pegula had learned in three years of ascending the ranks. It’s not about how you started. It’s how you finish. That was the case last week in Montreal. where she arrived in disrepair and left with her second WTA 1000 trophy.
“I played two really tough matches in DC and I was exhausted,” Pegula told WTA Insider in Cincinnati at the Western & Southern Open. I’m really hungover.
“I was very tired from the heat. In the past two matches, the first week on the hard court outside in the heat. Bad travel day. Honestly, I didn’t feel so good on Monday and Tuesday. i think so I’m going to get sick.
Instead of panicking or throwing self-pity parties, Pegula does what she always does. She put on a helmet and went to work.
Pegula made it through the first round, then knocked out Coco Gauff and Iga Swiatek before finishing the week with a 49-minute win in the final. Yet another example of how Pegula quietly evolved. As one of the most consistent players on the Hologic WTA Tour.
Pegula’s dominant Montreal run sets a straight record.
That attitude has made her the most consistent player at the WTA 1000 level for the past three seasons. It’s hard to believe that Pegula only debuted in the top 100 four years ago. With her 30th win at this year’s WTA 1000 level, she is far ahead of Iga Swiatek, in fact including the United Cup. Pegula has won more hard courts than anyone else this year.
“Sometimes the weeks I don’t feel so good about those weeks. “It was the week that I had my best results,” Pegula said. “That was what completely derailed me like it was three or four years ago. I’m frustrated with something.
“But now, if it’s almost too good or I feel too good, I’m like, ‘Uh,’ that means something is going to go bad when I start the tournament. Now, I’m the opposite.”
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Pegula will need the same composure in her Cincinnati opener, who managed to overcome her own frustrations to beat Italy’s Martina Trevisan 6-7(2), 6-2, 6-3. Elise Mertens or Marie Bouzkova in the last 16. She is bidding for a quarterfinal or better in her fifth straight tournament. In seven hardcourt tournaments this season, Pegula has failed to make the quarterfinals or better just once.
Cincinnati: Draw | Schedule | Scores
Pegula was extremely happy to ride the wave of momentum that began during the grass swing. Even though her physical condition may have been up and down, her bounce boosted her confidence.
“Since Wimbledon I think I made a more conscious effort to play more aggressively. and I just watched football for any reason “Even before DC, training at home, I feel great.”
Pegula’s title in Montreal came right as she prepared to carry the torch at the US Open as the highest-ranked American. First, this year, the 29-year-old from Buffalo says she’s ready for it.
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It helps when you know you own it.
“I think I went through a phase of ‘oh, I hope I keep winning,’” Pegula said.
With her growing confidence and experience, Pegula says she now feels no need. “Prove your point or anyone else”
But she expressed her desire to move up to first or second place in the rankings and win a Grand Slam.
However, she emphasized that “I’m not going to sit there and put too much pressure on myself. Maybe it’s because I’m getting older. I don’t care. Whatever happens, happens.”
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