“A Bit Depressing”: Caroline Wozniacki Reminisces Her Emotions Upon Turning Number One in World

Published 05/06/2021, 12:02 AM CDT
Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark drapes a Danish flag over her shoulders and acknowledges the crowd after losing her Women’s Singles third round match against Ons Jabeur of Tunisia on day five of the 2020 Australian Open at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)


Former world number one and the 2018 Australian Open winner Caroline Wozniacki had a remarkable career spanning more than a decade in which she won 30 WTA titles and defeated players like Serena Williams, Simona Halep, Agnieszka Radwanska, Maria Sharapova, and others. 

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Wozniacki is known for her defensive skills, and her double-handed backhand was known to be one of the best in business. She was also an aggressive returner and scared the opponents with sharper returns, especially on their second serve.

Caroline Wozniacki became world number one at the age of 20

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During her decade-long career, Wozniacki had to face several injuries and loss of form. But she always found a way to bounce back and reach the top of her game every time. 

Wozniacki reached the number one ranking for the first time in 2010 when she was just 20 years old. She retained her top ranking at the year-end championships in 2011 and held the first spot for 67 weeks. 

Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark celebrates victory after her Ladies Singles third round match against Anett Kontaveit of Estonia on day six of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

During that period, Wozniacki didn’t win a Grand Slam, yet her constant performances on tour ensured her the number one spot. 

Speaking to legendary Chris Evert about her number one ranking without a Grand Slam title, Wozniacki shed light on what she realized during that invincible phase. 

I think, it’s everyone’s dream when they start playing tennis, I think, to be number one in the world and to be the best at what you do but also win a grand slam. And I think, for me, I was just thrilled you know, for a very long time getting to number one in the world at the age of 20 and really, you know, that’s a childhood dream, come true,” Wozniacki explained.

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Wozniacki says getting to number one was exciting and equally depressing

Wozniacki also reflected on why it was equal parts exciting and depressing to reach the pinnacle of the sport and said:

“I think it was really exciting and also a little bit depressing at the same time. I will tell you why. I remember winning my quarter-finals against Petra Kvitova and after winning that match in Beijing, I knew that I was gonna be number one, starting Monday. But, you know, they have this big presentation for me. And everything was great, flowers on the court, champagne. My dad was there. It was really wonderful.”

The Dane quickly added that even though she became world number one, she was still called to practice by her father (coach) the very next day as she had to prepare for a match. She could hear him provide the same instructions as before, and nothing had changed. 

“I am number one in the world, but nothing really changed. It’s all the same thing. And I think that’s when it hit me that it’s all about the journey. It’s about getting there. It’s about those hours you have put in for so many years, those experiences, the ups, and the downs. That really, that’s what matters. And of course, reaching your ultimate dream is absolutely incredible. But you really have to enjoy the journey,” Wozniacki added. 

While it’s quite common to lose track of one’s own self if you are a high-performance athlete, it’s equally important to cherish the journey leading to greatness as Wozniacki did during the course of her career.

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Sagar Ashtakoula

199 articles

Sagar Ashtakoula is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He has been following the sport since 2007. Having developed an interest in creating content, he mixed his passion for writing with his love for tennis for 2 years at SportsKeeda before joining the tennis team at EssentiallySports.

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