Jessica Pegula, Despite First Round Loss at US Open, Still Making Strides in 2019
(August 27, 2019) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Despite a first-round loss at the US Open on Tuesday to Frenchwoman Alize Cornet 6-2, 6-3 on Court 7, the world No. 58 Jessica Pegula is having a very positive year.
The 25-year-old born in Buffalo, NY, now living in Florida won her first WTA Tour title earlier this month at the Citi Open in Washington, D.C. and reached her career-high ranking of 55 in the world.
“It was really exciting. It was such a good week for me and I played a lot of good consecutive matches so that was really exciting.
“I think it was little bit of a breakthrough for me. There is still a long way to go for me for the rest of the year. I’m so exciting to keep it going so I hope to play better than today went. So I’m just going to try and put it (the loss on Tuesday) behind me and just work on what I have accomplished this year.”
Pegula came straight into the main draw as opposed to having to play the qualifying tournament, the two previous times she made the US Open draw.
“Definitely a good feeling having to be here a week before for qualifying, I kind of missed it, getting a feel for the courts and playing matches, but no, I’d rather be straight in than have to play qualifying.
Pegula, daughter of the owners of the NFL’s Buffalo Bills and the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres said that she was inspired to play tennis by her sister, who played college tennis for the University of Pittsburgh.
“My sister (Laura) played college tennis, so when I was growing up, I always played tennis, I started when I was around 7. That was always my goal to be a professional tennis player before all the sports teams happened. It was just kind of something that happened when I was around 17. The goal was always first was tennis and the other stuff kind of came later. I would say that it hasn’t really impacted me that much so to speak for my tennis.”
“I did not watch that much tennis growing up, I read a lot of books about it. I used to read a lot of autobiographies on players. My mom would always read them to me of mostly tennis players and I didn’t really watch a specific person I would say, but just my older sister play, she as a good college player, Division 1 at Pitt and I was just kind of around it. My dad was around it he played racquetball, so I was just around racquet sports and something I did after school, it just kind of when from there.”
Pegula talked about the key to her year and her positive results – “I would say my fitness, for sure, physically. I’ve gotten faster and stayed healthy and then I think with that kind of comes more a sense of confidence and gives you more confidence when you are out there and it makes you feel like you are physically fit and your healthy, that has definitely been the key for me, and then obviously trying to keep a good mindset every week going forward. There are so many tournaments every week.
“There is always next week, that’s the great thing about tennis.
“You see girls like Madison (Keys) lost a couple of first rounds and them she wins Cincy so it can turn around week, match, maybe it’s a point, that kind of turns it around so I managed to do that a lot better this year. Hopefully I can keep it going the rest of the year.”
“I try not to get too down on a bad week.”
As for the rest of the year, “I’m going to go to Asia to play Seoul, Guangzhou, Beijing and go from there to see how it goes,” she said. “Maybe stick around and play New Haven next week. Not sure, see how I do in doubles tomorrow and go off of that.”
Karen Pestaina at the US Open