SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Caroline Garcia has been on a whirlwind ride that carried her into the WTA Finals following back-to-back titles in China and the Frenchwoman admitted to almost letting her emotions get the better of her as she faced an early exit on Wednesday.
The world number eight was down a set and a break to Elina Svitolina in the second round-robin match of her tournament debut and suddenly burst into tears as she walked back on court following a pep-talk from her coach and father Louis-Paul.
“I cannot say I handled it very well. Everyone saw it. I didn’t handle it very well at all,” Garcia told reporters following the incident that seemed to trigger the comeback in her 6-7(7) 6-3 7-5 victory over her Ukrainian opponent.
“It’s often like this and I tried to improve this part of myself. I play with my emotions on show and sometimes it gets too much,” the 24-year-old added
“The loss of the first set was very difficult because I had some chances and some set points, but sometimes you have to just let it go and keep going.
“My dad came over and I don’t know what we talked about. I just, like - it just all came out.”
Garcia lost her tournament opener to world number one Simona Halep on Monday and another defeat would have spelled the end of her interest in Singapore, yet somehow she battled back in the second set against Svitolina and did so again in the third.
“There were so many ups-and-downs in this match, a little bit like the one we played in Beijing (where Garcia also won in three sets). She was serving very well in the last set up until 5-3 and then I got a look at her second serve,” she said.
“I knew this was my last chance, so I went for it. I tried to be even more aggressive, tried to hit it down the line and I was more accurate. I was also patient on the long rallies, and it made the difference.”
To reach the semi-finals, Garcia needs to overcome an unbeaten Caroline Wozniacki in her final Red Group match on Friday and hope Svitolina beats Halep.
Editing by John O'Brien, editing by Ed Osmond