The Belarusian has never been the best clay player as her most memorable results came on surfaces like hard and grass. She won her only Grand Slam trophy on a hard court earlier this year but she's also won two WTA trophies on clay.
Interestingly enough, both of those trophies have come in Madrid with the second one just a few days ago after a win over Iga Swiatek. There is a reason for that and it's mostly due to the geography of Madrid as well as her comfort level in the city. The trophy was her 13th in her career and it's something she never expected to happen as she revealed in a talk with WTA Insider.
If someone would say I would be a Grand Slam champion and I would be No.2 in the world and that I would be winning titles on clay, I would have thought, 'I don't know, it's a lot of work to do and I'm not sure that I'm capable of this.
The trophy comes as a result of a lot of hard work. She's always been a hard worker but the turnaround that she managed to do is remarkable. Just over a year ago Sabalenka basically couldn't serve and now she's a Grand Slam champion who could even end up number one in tennis.
I think that was the key. I was just working super hard, I kept improving my game, finding things that I could do better, analyze my game a lot. So it was a lot of hard work since my very first match at Fed Cup. Looking back I'm super proud of myself and my team and what we've done these last years.
A huge test is coming up at Roland Garros. She's one of the favourites due to her ranking and the level she showed this year. Being considered a favourite on clay is something that she needs to get used to but ultimately the upcoming weeks will show what the truth is.
It's not like I feel that way, but I really want to be one of those players. I'll keep working hard and keep trying to bring my best tennis in Rome and Roland Garros. We'll see after the clay-court season how good I am on clay or if I was just lucky these few weeks.