Defeated Watson expected more

Heather Watson

Heather Watson

First published in National Sport © by

Heather Watson smashed her racquet on the clay in frustration at the end of her French Open defeat by 25th seed Julia Goerges because it was a match she expected to win.

The British number three was delighted last year after qualifying for the main draw and winning her first-round match, but this time her emotions were quite different following a 6-3 6-4 defeat.

Watson said: "Last year was so big for me. I was new to the tour and it was just a huge win to get through that first round. This year I believed I could do it. I expected myself to get through qualies, and when I saw the draw I expected myself to win my first round. Even today, I expected myself to win, which is good.

"I'm coming in with a different mentality now, a more confident approach," she said.

Watson had been in superb form in her first-round win over Elena Vesnina on Tuesday but 23-year-old German Goerges was a real step up in class.

Watson made a perfect start, breaking the Goerges serve in the opening game, but from there she lost three games in a row, the remodelled serve that was so good against Vesnina struggling to find its mark.

Goerges' game plan of going for broke whenever possible was making it hard for Watson to get any rhythm. The German continued to mix blazing winners with errors, but she was consistent enough to take the first set, and she then moved 2-0 ahead in the second.

But Watson is a battler and back she came, levelling matters at 2-2 only to lose her serve again in the seventh game with a fifth double fault. The young Briton was trading much better with Goerges now but she could not quite get back on level terms and the end came with a shanked return on the 25th seed's first match point.

Watson said: "I was really up for today, ready for the match. Julia played well, she didn't give me any rhythm at all and that's what these top players do. If it's short they just put it away, hit good shots. They'll miss some but I think I was just getting a bit frustrated, maybe trying to do a bit too much with my serve, with the short balls.

The 20-year-old will now return to England and will build up to Wimbledon at the grass-court tournaments in Nottingham, Birmingham and Eastbourne.

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