Three-time Grand Slam champion, Stan Wawrinka, reached the finals of French Open 2017, losing to Rafael Nadal in straight sets. A few weeks later, at Wimbledon, he lost to the debutant Daniil Medvedev in the opening round, in four sets. Soon after, Wawrinka called off his 2017 tennis season due to a knee injury.
The issue persisted in the year 2018 and, finally, after 20 months he reached the first ATP finals in Rotterdam in 2019. While Wawrinka was dealing with his injuries and recovery, the Swiss press grew skeptical about his return to his best form. Consequently, he labeled the media as a little too “spoiled.”
“In 2019, I came back from a very big injury. My surgeon offered me no guarantee that I would ever be able to play again,” Stan Wawrinka reflected on the same while speaking to L’Illustré. “Even less at this level. Last year, however, I reached the quarterfinals twice in a Grand Slam and I returned to the top 15.”
Indeed, last year Wawrinka played some phenomenal matches on the Grand Slams courts, be it his French Open match against Stefanos Tsitsipas or US Open encounter against Novak Djokovic. Stan certainly did amazingly well. Also, the Swiss star reached the finals at Antwerp, wherein he lost to three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray.
After all this, the journalists’ words did not please Wawrinka.
“However, journalists kept asking me if I was going to return to my best level. Personally, I was quite satisfied with my performance, considering what I had just gone through. I found it a bit rough. I had the feeling that there were too many expectations.”
The tennis world is well aware of Stan’s social media presence, as he is extremely active. Following the same, he’s constantly in touch with his fans on social networks. Moreover, he feels they are his ‘driving force’ during matches.
“As much as possible. The fans are very important, it’s a big part of them that I am where I am and tournaments exist. It will be strange to play behind closed doors. I always liked to use the energy of the public. It is a driving force,” he said.
(Quotes have been translated using Google translation)
During the suspension, Wawrinka has been arduously working on his fitness. However, he has not played any exhibition matches. He’s expected to choose tournaments from the European clay circuit, once the season resumes.