Paula Badosa He has managed to meet again, he is happy playing tennis, it shows in his face, in the game and especially in the results he is obtaining this season. It is great news that this young Catalan tennis player has left behind the depression she suffered and the anxiety problems. He is another person, safe on the track despite the fact that in the final he never parked his face of concentration and seriousness. And with her he took the match, the final and the title of Indian wells after beating Victoria Azarenka 7-6 (5), 2-6 and 7-6 (2).
Paula started nervous and Azarenka intense. It was the difference between an experienced tennis player who has already won the title twice at Indian Wells and a tennis player making her debut in a Masters 1000 final. It was predictable and natural.
But the Catalan saved three break balls in the second set and This gave her wings, pause and tranquility, quite the opposite of the Belarusian, who had doubts. So much so that in the third game it was Badosa who had three break balls. Azarenka kept the serve, but sweating.
This became routine with both players having trouble keeping the serve until Paula broke into the seventh game, but the Belarusian made it up with a counterbreak. Equality, a lot of equality and, despite the fact that Paula did not quite feel comfortable, she was holding on tightly to the game. It was a great opportunity, one of the moments dreamed of, and he was not about to let it slip away. A new break in the eleventh game opened a world for him that he did not take advantage of. 6-6 already for a 'tie break' that Badosa began dominating, he let it complicate but with much suffering he ended up winning it. The first set was already his.
Decompression came in the second set for Badosa after having overcome so much tension and Azarenka, much more solid, awarded it 6-2 in the blink of an eye.
In the third the titanic fight returned. Break, contrabreak ... same dynamic as at the beginning with comings and goings and both capable of the best and the worst. Of those games that it seems that one gets tired even watching it on TV to see the effort of the players on the court.
Badosa lacked conviction in attitude. He was suffering but taking difficult points forward but he did not celebrate them, he did not let go at any time. Because of concentration, because of tension, because of responsibility, because of novelty, because of suffering ... how many things were going through the head of the Begur tennis player who had to fight the unspeakable each point against a player who gave everything back.
The game was in 'crescendo' with the passage of the games of the third set. Both clung to the game tooth and nail, scoring cartoon points that both deserved to win.
Azarenka broke Badosa's serve to go 5-4 and serve to win the match. Paula saw how the final escaped after a tough game but the matches have to be closed and the Belarusian shrugged and saw how the Catalan rallied and got 6-5 ahead. Heart attack.
How could it be otherwise, a new tie break to close a match that both deserved to win. It started like the one in the first set with a 3-0 for Paula who this time did not let slip and took the title becoming the first Spanish to achieve it.
Badosa is already one of the greats, she will be the thirteenth tennis player in the world on Monday and is much closer to the WTA Finals, which has already become her clear objective. Today a star was born and her name is Paula Badosa.