The hugs were unrelenting. Smiles stretched across Ashe Stadium. A Grand Slam champion had been born, and, moments after, Inside Tennis publisher Bill Simons spoke with Bianca’s coach, Sylvain Bruneau.
What did Bianca show you on the biggest court in the biggest moment?
What she’s made of. Even the way she started the match – free – and went for her shots. She kept playing at a really high level. We know what happened after 5-1, [Bianca is] up match point, and then things start skipping away…Serena is playing better, and the crowd– Then it becomes anybody’s match…She kept her composure at 5-5 to hold serve. Very impressive. [She] did it the right way…to break Serena and just go and take it.
What did she call on at that point? Was she calling on something deep within her? What did she use to stabilize herself in such a volatile situation?
She knows how to control her thought process, and not let her thoughts wander too much, and get them back in the match. And breathing, of course. It’s very difficult to do, very easy to say it. To stay there, and keep doing what you do.
She came back in this tournament, and at Indian Wells it took her three championship points as well, so she has a tenacity.
Of course. She is a street fighter, she is a warrior, she is a competitor – a born competitor.
You had a wonderful moment with her in the player garden before the match. There was such focus. Can you tell me a little bit of what you were sharing with her?
We were just making sure she was ready and just going over a few things that were key for her to do well…She was able to bring it on the court and do something very special, so I’m really proud of her.
And the one or two things you told her that were key?
She needed to go out there and not be intimidated by the moment. We knew there was a lot of adversity and, yeah, we also had a game plan…but I wanted her to handle the moment and be in the moment, go and release her shots.
This is the beginning of something truly great. She’s just 19…
Hopefully, hopefully. We’ll see. That’s the plan. We are going to need to keep working really hard…keep going at it.