Caroline Garcia savours huge 2022 and sets Grand Slam goal

Caroline Garcia reflected on a tumultuous season that she managed to turn around in the last few months.

The Frenchwoman believes that her run in the US Open season and at the WTA Tour finals, has given her the belief that she can do even better in 2023.

Garcia hopes to be able to add a Grand Slam to her WTA 1000 and WTA Tour finals win. She feels that she has the quality to win a Slam after a term where she proved to herself that she is a top a player.

Writing a Player's View column for EuroSport, Garcia said: "I see the Masters [WTA Finals] as my greatest achievement.

"It's usually considered as the fifth biggest tournament of the year, just after the Grand Slams. The format is special. The match against Kasatkina was a bit like a quarter-final.

"The one who won was going through. It was quite extreme tension for the last round-robin match. You have to win at least four matches against girls who are ranked from No. 1 to No. 8, and that is over a week, so it's still quite intense, while you can win a Grand Slam without beating girls in the top 10, top 20. So it's a title that means a lot to me."

Garcia doesn't feel a sensation of relief surrounding the big wins she achieved in 2022 but rather believes that is has added expectations from both herself and externally.

"Is it a relief for me? I don't know. Yes and no," she wrote.

"Maybe that takes a little weight off me. But at the same time, it makes the dream and the goal of winning a Grand Slam even more concrete because it makes you want to go for much more. That's sport... that's tennis. Once you have accomplished something, you always want to go for more."

Garcia says that while she takes confidence from the season she has had, her experiences and past wins don't make snatching a Grand Slam title easier.

"Trying to go for the biggest titles is what fuels my motivation. It's the main reason why I'm training every day. Sure, the Masters is very important, it shows me what I'm capable of, but I think my game can still improve.

"I feel I'm able to achieve greater things. After reaching the semis at the US Open and then winning the WTA Finals, winning a Grand Slam becomes a concrete dream, a tangible one, even if there is still a long way to go. I still have seven matches to win to get a Grand Slam. The road is not shorter now that I won the Masters.

"But I guess it makes me even more confident that it's not impossible. It shows me that I'm able to go for a Grand Slam title. It will be two challenging weeks in many areas for sure, but I have the style and the level of play to do it. Now I know how to deal with bad days. That doesn't mean I'll be able to go over and beat the opponent that day, but I have the skills to do it so I'm much more confident."

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