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“Every win at a Grand Slam is a happy day” – but triumphant Svitolina and Monfils missing daughter Skai

Svitolina and Monfils both began their US Open campaigns with wins, but being away from their daughter is taking its own toll

Elina Svitolina US Open 2023

Elina Svitolina began her US Open campaign with a straight-sets win 6-3, 6-1 in under an hour against Anna-Lena Friedsam, and declared herself very happy with her performance.

The Ukrainian pulled out of Cincinnati having lost in the first round of Montreal earlier in the month, so a solid straightforward win was particularly reassuring.

“Because I didn’t play in Cincinnati, was a bit struggling with my health little bit, today this win and the form that I showed is a good day and a good win because, yeah, I was a bit concerned about my health,” she said to journalists afterwards.

“But any win on the Grand Slam is a happy, happy day because the best players are here, everyone is there trying to beat you, trying to bring their best game. That’s why there’s so many exciting matches on the Grand Slam.

“So that’s why every win in the Grand Slam is a happy day.”

Svitolina: We miss her – it’s not easy

One thing making Svitolina less than happy, though, is her lengthy absence from daughter Skai, who remains at home while her parents compete in New York.

“We decided for the sake of her health to leave her at home, unfortunately. We miss her really much because this is like the last push now. It’s been one month now that we didn’t see her. We FaceTime every single day. But, yeah, it’s not easy.”

She added: “We had her at Roland-Garros. Of course, we spend some time with her. But during the slam, it is very limited time because all the time you wake up, you go train, you have treatments, you have media, you have everything, like so many things. Then in between her naps is managing your day, your time.

“In the end I don’t see her as much as I wish. So that’s why in the end we decided to leave her at home. We have a team who is taking care of her, as well, so she’s super safe at home. – watching some matches of us playing here in States.”

Svitolina’s husband Gael Monfils shared similar sentiments, saying to French media: “It’s too hard to be so far away from my daughter. This is an aspect of the job that changes things enormously. It’s a sacrifice I don’t want to make. Seven weeks without seeing my daughter is too difficult.”

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