"She dictated so much": Two-time French Open runner-up in awe of Elena Rybakina's backhand

Sunday, 02 June 2024 at 12:32
Two-time French Open runner-up Alex Corretja has revealed that he feels ‘jealous’ after seeing the power of Elena Rybakina’s backhand. The 24-year-old booked her place in the round of 32 after beating Belgium’s Elise Mertens with a score of 6-4, 6-2.
Corretja was later quoted in a report stating that he feels ‘jealous’ after seeing the power produced by the current women’s world number four on her backhand. “She can hit winners all over the place, with the forehand, the backhand, the serve," said Corretja.
"The ball is so hard all the time, I’m jealous of her power, I would say. She also has the feel, even if she hits very hard. Mertens is a smart player but has a lack of power to over-power Elena. She dictated so much. I don’t think there are that many clay-court specialists on the women’s side, because pretty much they play with a lot of flatness on their shots. Maybe Iga [Swiatek] and Coco Gauff, they play with some more top-spin, maybe even Paula Badosa. Even Ons [Jabeur] plays quite flat. But the fact they are playing in these heavy conditions, I think Rybakina likes it as she can hit as hard as she wants, she’s not missing, and it’s difficult to move her.”

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