Sometimes, scorelines are not representative of how the match developed, and former WTA's world no. 1, Venus Williams, felt that was the case during her first-round loss at the 2023 US Open, in what was her milestone 100th match.
The American just wasn't able to get many shots past her opponent, and at times, the Belgian seemed to be unbeatable for Williams. That's also why the first thing that the experienced player did after the match was giving credit to other opponent.
"I mean, I think first I have to give credit to my opponent. I mean, there wasn't a shot she couldn't make. Even when I hit really amazing shots, she just hit a winner or a dropshot, so... I don't think I played badly. I think it was just one of those days where it's just unlucky."
At the same time, Venus felt unlucky, but she also admitted that her preparation for the tournament was 'minimal,' especially because of the lack of playing time.
"My preparation was definitely minimal. But I don't think that it necessarily affected the bulk of my performance. I think there are just shots where my footwork wasn't really there. A lot of backhands I missed where my feet just weren't there. That's normal when you don't spend a lot of time on the court."
"Obviously preparation is always a fantastic thing to have in life, in general, especially as an athlete. Yeah, I mean, I definitely could have hoped for more throughout the year. Honestly, I just had some really bad luck. I don't think it was a lack of my body not holding up, it was just a lack of, like, really bad luck with injuries. There were things I couldn't control."