'Being On Court Is A Win': Badosa's Buoyant Message In Spite Of Miami Exit

'Being On Court Is A Win': Badosa's Buoyant Message In Spite Of Miami Exit

by Nurein Ahmed

Paula Badosa was unsure whether she would be able to pick up a tennis racket again after her second retirement in 2024, which occurred last month at the Dubai Championships.

Fast forward a month later, and the Spaniard was involved in one of the most exciting first-round matches at the Miami Open. In it, she defeated two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep, who was on her own comeback trail but for very different reasons.

Badosa has fought a chronic back injury for nearly a year. Last season, she retired in a second-round match at Wimbledon and was not to be seen again on a match court in a WTA tournament. While she was accompanying her boyfriend Stefanos Tsitsipas on tour, she was not actively competing.

At the end of last year, there was a ray of sunlight after Badosa showed sufficient progress in her rehab from the stress fracture on her back to earn a place in Spain's Billie Jean King Cup squad.

Although she did not play a single minute in the Finals, it was a welcome experience that rekindled her self-drive and optimism. 2024 began positively, with Badosa reaching the third round of the Australian Open.

But soon after, her back problems resurfaced. The Spaniard retired from matches at the Hua Hin Championships at the end of January and, most recently, in Dubai last month.

Her decision to withdraw from Indian Wells at the last minute was heartbreaking, especially since she had been in action just a day earlier, playing the Tie Break Tens.

However, this week, Badosa returned to action and played two matches in Miami. Having defeated Halep, she lost to her good friend Aryna Sabalenka in an emotionally intoxicating match. Despite the loss, the 26-year-old was delighted to relive the thrill of the competition after a turbulent year dealing with injuries.

"3 weeks ago I was in a sofa without knowing when I would be able to play again, after that for the first time I was able to play during 8 days in a row since almost a year. I’m happy and proud of it. I know my level is far but the fact that I’m on a court, it’s a win. Step by step."

Badosa wrote on X (formerly Twitter)

"We keep fighting. Vamos."

"Special thank you to this person @PolToledoBague for being next to me at my toughest moments and helping me every day. We will make it."


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