Sam's excited by another shot at French Open
INSPIRED by a second Strasbourg title, Sam Stosur is confident she can overcome fatigue and a quick turnaround to make another deep French Open run.
Elated after denying compatriot Daria Gavrilova in a gruelling three-set final to retain the Australian No.1 ranking, Stosur immediately set her sights on Roland Garros.
The Queenslander had no time to celebrate her eighth singles crown, catching a train to Paris to prepare for a first-round match with Slovakian Kristina Kucova.
"It's a very quick turnaround. Hopefully we haven't tired each other out too much,” Stosur said after clinching a 2hr46min final.
"I'm just excited to get the French Open started.
"Everything's good. So tomorrow, I'll be going to Roland Garros and have a very easy practice, just try and feel the courts there and get used to the different atmosphere.
"And then play on Monday.”
Stosur vindicated the decision to take a wildcard into Strasbourg, securing an extension to her record 450-week stint as Australian No.1.
Runner-up here in 2010 and a semi-finalist on three other occasions, Stosur senses opportunity and danger in equal measure in the absence of Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova.
"It's a little bit different maybe with the top seeds (missing) but everyone's still bloody good regardless of those two players being there or not, it's not easy to win a slam,” Stosur said.
"I'm sure I speak for every single person in the draw. We all want to be holding that trophy at the end of the week.
"You can only play the person on the other side of the net. That's hard enough without worrying about who's not there.”
Stosur kicks off against an opponent she is familiar with but has never faced Kucova.
"I've never played her before, I've watched her play a little bit,” Stosur said.
"She's double-handed both sides, runs well and competes well.
"She's been doing pretty well this year and it's one of those matches where I know I have to play well, compete well and be aggressive with my game.”
Crushed by a late-match implosion against Stosur, Gavrilova believes she can excel on her best surface in Paris.
"It was a great tournament for me in Strasbourg,” she said.
"I had a really good five matches. I played a lot of tennis.
"I don't think I need to stress about getting ready for Roland Garros. I'm ready to go, I'm feeling confident.”
Ajla Tomljanovic returns to grand slam action after serious injury with a protected ranking and will challenge last season's semi-finalist and 16th seed Kiki Bertens.
Victorian teenager Jamie Fourlis, winner of Tennis Australia's wildcard play-off, takes on former world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki.