Classy Kerber aims to make it third time lucky

Angelique Kerber
Angelique Kerber

Angelique Kerber aims to make it third time lucky as she returns to Devonshire Park determined to finally land the top prize.

Twice the 27-year-old German left-hander has made it through to final of the AEGON International and twice she suffered painful defeats on centre court.

In 2012 she lost to Tamira Paszek, having served for the championship at 5–3 in the deciding set and missed five match points.

While in 2014 Kerber played some great tennis in the final but narrowly went down in three sets to big-serving American teenager Madison Keys.

Despite the defeats the world No.10 has great memories of Eastbourne and is looking forward to her return to the south coast.

She said, “It’s always nice coming back to Eastbourne.

“I have lost twice in the finals but I feel the tournament has been good for me.

“I have played some great matches there. Maybe it is one I should have won but it didn’t quite happen for me. Hopefully this year, if I have a good run, I can win it, third time lucky for sure.”

Of last year’s final she added, “Madison played great and deserved it - it was a very tough match. It will be tough again this year, there will be some good opponents so we just wait and see.”

Against Keys in last year’s final Kerber admits her opponent’s serve was a decisive weapon against her. A lethal serve on grass is a huge advantage and it is an area Kerber has been working hard on in training.

She said, “The serve and the return is so important. If I am to be successful on grass my return has to be good. It is something I have been working on and improving. But when the serves come down that quick and bounces so high you just have to try and get something on it and stay in the point.”

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