I made a mistake with my schedule, admits Mladenovic

Published by Matt Trollope

Kristina Mladenovic is the top seed at this week's WTA Kremlin Cup in Moscow, Russia; Getty Images
Currently enduring a nine-match, 18-set losing streak, Kristina Mladenovic opened up about her slump ahead of the WTA Kremlin Cup, where she is the top seed.

It’s somewhat remarkable that Kristina Mladenovic is ranked as high as she is, given her form.

After a scintillating first half of the season during which she reached four WTA finals and the quarterfinals at Roland Garros, the Frenchwoman has not won a match since Washington DC in July.

Since then it’s been nine consecutive losses – all in straight sets.

Somehow, she’s still ranked No.13 and heads the field at this week’s WTA Kremlin Cup in Moscow.

As the top seed with a first-round bye, Mladenovic spoke about how loading up her schedule despite an injury had ended up costing her dearly.

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“I had some issues after Wimbledon with my knee. I tore the inside ligament of my knee when I fell down in my second round match,” she told wtatennis.com.

“I came back from the holidays and that problem was solved. I had some issue because of compensation and I couldn’t handle the pain and I thought that I would keep playing like this, because it was not the right period to take a break, but it definitely was a wrong choice.

“My schedule until Wimbledon and US Open was fine, but I realised now that I made a mistake after US Open with too many tournaments on my schedule.”

Indeed, despite her professed physical struggles, Mladenovic nonetheless contested tournaments in four consecutive weeks immediately following the US Open – Tokyo [Japan Open], Tokyo [Pan Pacific Open], Wuhan and Beijing.

On 1 October, she finally saw sense, announcing she was withdrawing from the doubles event in Beijing and the following week’s tournament in Hong Kong – which would have been her 11th consecutive tournament week.

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After two weeks of rehab and conditioning, Mladenovic said her knee was back on track – and that her tennis was too.

“I cannot go back, but I definitely learned from it and it was a great lesson for sure. I will do some things differently next year,” she said.

“I’m very happy to be back in Moscow. I really like the tournament, I’ve been coming for several years and it feels different now. It feels actually very nice to be the top seed in such a great event.

“I came a little bit earlier so I can give myself better chances to be well-prepared for the tournament. I hope I can do it.”

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