'Play Serena, not her story,' the coach tells Wang from China
NEW YORK: Her coach compares her to Rafael Nadal, and Chinese Wang Qiang will have to conjure up a performance worthy of the Spanish star when he faces the 23-time Grand Slam champion. Serena Williams in the quarterfinals of the US Open on Tuesday.
Wang, 27, is trying to emulate Li Na , the former French and Australian Open champion, and Zheng Jie and Peng Shuai as the fourth Chinese player to reach the last four of an important race.
Obstructing his path is the six-time US Open champion Williams, a victory less than a century in Flushing Meadows, but Wang's coach, Thomas Drouet, insists that the 37-year-old American is no longer the dominant force of Last two decades.
I think the key in that match is she mustn't try to beat Serena Williams and what she achieved. If she tries to beat history and what Serena achieved before in Arthur Ashe Stadium , she has no chance, said Drouet.
Your only solution is to beat the girl now, what it is now. If we think about what Serena is now, she has a chance.
If he tries to beat the girl who won 23 Grand Slams, he will see it too big (a challenge). I want him to see that Serena isn't like that.
Williams captured her last Slam title at the 2017 Australian Open while she was pregnant and hasn't won the US Open. UU. Since 2014.
Drouet implored Wang not to submit to mind games with a player looking for her 24th title to match Margaret Court's historical record.
Don't play this game with her, he said, plainly spelling out the advice he would give Wang. Don't be scared of her. You are playing Serena Williams of 2019.
Wang has not lost a set on the way to the quarterfinals, his deepest career after a series of third-round exhibits in the Slams, and sent the current Roland Garros champion Ashleigh Barty in the last 16.
I don't think he played better tennis Drouet said after a 6-2, 6-4 defeat of the second Australian seed.
"She didn't have to play her best tennis , she was just so accurate. She played the right tactics.
"I make her think a lot in practice about why you do this or that. When you play the correct plan and you take your opponent out of their comfort zone, you don't need to play your best tennis . You just need to be accurate."
Drouet, a former Davis Cup player for Monaco that includes the 2013 Wimbledon champion, Marion Bartoli, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Peng among his former students, only joined him as Wang's coach this summer.
Wang's previous coach had been Peter McNamara, the late Australian Davis Cup tennis star and Wimbledon doubles champion.
McNamara, a popular figure on men's and women's tours, died in July at the age of 64 after a battle with prostate cancer.
I remember that when he started with Peter, God bless him. I was always impressed with the work. He had the discipline and respect he gave the coach, Drouet recalled about his decision to collaborate with Wang.
I don't pretend to be a magician, I only have this discipline and work ethic every day, both on a good day and on a bad day, and I felt that she had this naturally. When I started with her really well connected.
Describing Wang as very quiet and shy, Drouet quickly earned his trust and produced immediate results: a semi-final in the Bronx and an exhibition of Slam in the neighboring district of Queens left her on the cusp of the top 10)
I think it is that kind of player who has this ability to analyze what is happening and I think that the WTA tour is a great weapon. She is also a very athletic girl.
Point by point, she tires her opponent. It's like Nadal is doing it, he is not going to hurry. He is making the opponent get tired and then he can kill him.
If Wang can do the same, he could end the last search in Serena's history in a place where he won his first Grand Slam title 20 years ago.