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Her most dominant win since August 2021: Garcia is more aggressive than ever

Caroline Garcia helped France to a 3-0 win over Argentina at the United Cup, playing very close to her baseline

Caroline Garcia October 18, 2022, GUADALAJARA, MEXICO: Caroline Garcia of France in action during the second round of the 2022 WTA Guadalajara Open Akron WTA 1000 tennis tournament against Rebecca Marino of Canada (Zuma/Panoramic)

In the last issue of Tennis Magazine, Caroline Garcia detailed the reasons for her collaboration with her new coach Juan Pablo Guzman.

“The objective was really to find someone to accompany me on a daily basis and continue to ensure that I stay on my game, it’s important,” she said. “We’ve had some really good results showing how well it works, and I love playing like this so why not? 

After seeing her first match of the 2023 season during the clash between France and Argentina in the United Cup, the observation is clear and sharp: the player has not changed her strategy and continues to fully assume her aggressive game and the permanent attack on her opponents. Nadia Podoroska, on the opposite side of the net on Friday, can testify to this. The 195th player in the world could only manage two games in 65 minutes.

Caroline Garcia
Caroline Garcia of France in action during her first round-robin match of the 2022 WTA Finals Fort Worth tennis tournament against Coco Gauff of the United States (Zuma/Panoramic)

The winner of the match (6-2, 6-0), Garcia completed her biggest success on the WTA circuit since August 2021, when as the world No 61 she beat Catherine Harrison (6-1, 6-2). That bagel also means the 29-year-old won a set without losing a game for the first time since the Lyon tournament in February 2022.

Garcia constantly pressuring the serve

The statistics from the match against Podoroska speak volumes about the aggressive play of the world No 4: she went to the net 24 times and won 18 points. She didn’t give her opponent a single opening, finishing the match with 90% of points won behind her first serve and no break points conceded.

Conversely, she had 11 break points on the Argentine’s serve, and managed to convert five of them. She dictated the rallies from start to finish and finished with ten winners compared to only three for Podoroska. The Frenchwoman’s forward game also brought some slack, with 19 unforced errors, but compensated for that with a strong serve, winners and precise volleying.

During the match, Tennis TV showed a very interesting infographic on Garcia’s placement on return of serve. On her opponent’s first serve, the world No 4 is most often placed one metre inside the court. On the second serve, she has both feet two metres inside, returning at three metres. Podoroska could not handle the immense pressure put on her by the Frenchwoman.

Garcia: I want to play tennis the way that makes me happy

Her success secured France’s victory over Argentina in the United Cup, and she was very satisfied after the match in Perth, on a court that brought back very good memories: in 2019, the French Fed Cup team had won the competition there by beating Australia in the final.

“It’s nice to be back here, where we won the Fed Cup in 2019, especially with Alizé (Cornet),” she said afterwards. “I’m very happy and I feel good vibes here. It’s important to keep improving, and I want to play tennis the way that makes me happy, moving forward.”

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