Pegula, High on Confidence after Guadalajara Title, Believes Better things are Coming

The American hits a career-high No.3 ranking on Monday. By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Monday, October 24, 2022

As she approaches the conclusion of what has been a spellbinding 2022 season, American Jessica Pegula just hit a career-best ranking and claimed her biggest title to date.

Tennis Express

The 28-year-old, a quintessential late bloomer on tour, who didn’t enter the top-50 for the first time until last March, is now proving herself to be one of the best in the sport, in both singles and doubles.

After she defeated Maria Sakkari for the Guadalajara title on Sunday, she told Courtney Nguyen, WTA Insider, that she was thrilled to raise a trophy after a season defined by consistency and deep runs, but not a single title.

“I wanted to solidify myself as being the third-ranked in the world and saying this is my tournament to win. So I was definitely aware of it, but I don't think I really overthought it or got too caught up in it,” she said.

Pegula said it felt especially good to be the author of her own triumph, rather than the part of someone else’s.

"Today it felt different. In the other tournaments I lost, or finals, or close matches or big matches,” she said. “I just feel like I was always kind of like a part of like someone else's story. Today I felt a little bit better. I felt like I'm writing my story today.”

Pegula, who reached the quarterfinals at the Australian Open, Roland-Garros and the US Open, lost to the world’s top-ranked player each time. Rather than hang her head, she has kept pushing for bigger and better things. She says the challenges – win or lose – have helped her shape her game and winning attitude this season.

"I think overcoming those constant mental challenges throughout the year is what I'm most proud of,” she said, as she referred to her difficult losses to top players like Iga Swiatek and Ash Barty. “To do it all the way up until the end of the year just shows that I've showed up every single week. I've been able to deal with it and learn from it and gain experience.”

Now, buoyed by the confidence that comes with her biggest title to date, Pegula is eager to push higher in the weeks and months to come.

Pegula will be in action next week at the WTA Finals, where she will make her singles and doubles debut (with Coco Gauff). Play begins on October 31.

Title: Pegula, High on Confidence after Guadalajara Title, Believes Better things are Coming
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Published Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2022 21:08:43 GMT