Share this story
Claim your Bonus
Get 100% up to SGD100 Bonus on your First Deposit
Heather Watson acknowledged hard work starts for her now after she qualified for main draw of Australian Open on Monday with a nervous 6-4 7-6 (7-1) win over American Irina Falconi.
The 21-year-old British number one appears to be back on an upward curve after dropping down to 120th in the world rankings in 2013, largely because of a bout of glandular fever which hampered her form and fitness levels.
Watson is also starting 2014 with a new coach after she drafted in Argentinian Diego Veronelli who has already helped her qualify for the recent Brisbane International.
And the victory over Falconi ensured a third successive qualifying win for Watson which means she will now look forward to a first-round meeting against 31st seed Daniela Hantuchova in Melbourne.
Watson will not be fazed as she reached the third round there 12 months ago, defeating Alexandra Cadantu and Ksenia Pervak on the way before fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska proved too much for her.
But she realises that she will have to take her A-game into the tournament if she is going to repeat, or even better, that feat.
She said: “I’m very happy that I am through but this is where it starts. I’ve just got over that first hurdle and there’s a long way to go yet.”