Diane Parry does not want to “set limits”

“Here is Parry!” » Is it the geographical proximity between the Parc des Princes, home of Paris-Saint-Germain, and Roland-Garros that gives fans ideas? Still, the public at the Philippe-Chatrier court has dubbed Diane Parry. At 19, the French took the best, Monday, May 23, on the Czech Barbora Krejcikova in three sets (1-6, 6-2, 6-3). Nothing less than the defending champion Porte d’Auteuil and world number 2, who left the Parisian Grand Slam tournament in the first round of the 2022 edition.

Read also (2021): Roland-Garros: Barbora Krejcikova, winner of a tournament full of surprises

It was when the rain was in full swing, temporarily annihilating the tournament and drumming on the roof of the central court, that the young Frenchwoman came to brighten up the day for the spectators. Badly embarked, quickly led by a set and a break (1-6, 0-2), Diane Parry never stopped believing in it and saw her perseverance being rewarded. The 97and world player overthrew her Czech opponent, after having tamed the big stage of the Central.

“It’s never easy to start on this kind of court, especially against the defending championassured Diane Parry after her victory. We obviously want to do well, maybe I overplayed a little. But, somehow, I needed this. I understood during the match that I had to be aggressive, not to wait. » Towards the end of the first set, the Frenchwoman starts trying to win the points rather than waiting. And begins to annoy the tenant. “I told myself to play my game, to let go of my shots. I had nothing to lose. »

A child of Roland-Garros

At 19, Diane Parry knows the Porte d’Auteuil courts like the back of her hand. The one who grew up and still lives in Boulogne-Billancourt, not far from Roland-Garros, came there as a neighbor – and “on a scooter”she explained in 2019. She still trains there, throughout the year.

Three years ago, when she was not yet of age, the young woman had already passed the first round of the prestigious Parisian tournament, after having received an invitation. Now 97and world player, Parry earned her participation on the courts this year. “I did not intend to ask for wild cards [invitations qui permettent d’intégrer directement le tableau final] all my life at Roland”savored the player, questioned by 20 minutes, before the tournament. Among the great points of progression of the one that was still beyond the 300and place in the world last year: accepting to win without playing well. “With experience, you realize that there are plenty of games you win just by holding the ball, by making the other play one more shot. And that’s what I did at certain points in this match. »

Supported by the public against a combative title holder but struggling to go the distance physically, Diane Parry savored the boiling cauldron that has become the Chatrier court – the roof closed due to the rain. “I’ve always dreamed of being able to play on this court, which is almost full with the French public behind me to support me. That’s what clearly pushed me today to get this match.”she assured.

Far from being the most outgoing player on the circuit, the young tricolor with one-handed backhand has learned in recent years to force her nature. “I’m not screaming on the court like many other girls, but I try in my own way to show my determination”she explained in 20 minutes. Although she lost a game on her serve at the start of each set, Parry never gave up, applying these principles. “Making the other person feel that we are going to be present throughout the match and that it will be hard for them to win is important. »

Former world number one junior

Faced with a defending champion returning from injury and lacking in bearings, who admitted to having “hit the wall” physically in the middle of the second set, the tenacity of the Frenchwoman ended up hitting the target. “She’s young, she’s playing and she’s done a hell of a job of changing my pace a lot”greeted Krejcikova.

Ambitious, Diane Parry is now in the second round of Roland-Garros. Far from being a culmination for this former world number one among juniors, whose school overlooked the courts of Roland. “Passing two laps already would be good”, she warned before the tournament. Before specifying: Minimum. We are not going to set limits. »

In a women’s draw where the headliners tend to evaporate in the first round – after the Tunisian Ons Jabeur, Sunday, the Japanese Naomi Osaka, in turn, took the door on Monday – she would be wrong to to bridle. Because her unfortunate opponent of the day can testify to it: at Roland-Garros, it happens that girls out of nowhere (or almost) spring up like a comet and win the title.

Diane Parry is not there. In the second round, the French will challenge the Colombian Camila Osorio, 66and world. On Monday, Léolia Jeanjean and Elsa Jacquemot also validated their qualification, offering a breath of fresh air to French women’s tennis, which has been struggling for many years. If she is not sure to have the honors of the central court again, the child of Roland-Garros will certainly be supported by the French public, ready to sing again, like football fans: “Parry is magic”.

Read also: Roland-Garros 2022: Corentin Moutet and Diane Parry bring smiles to the tricolor camp, Swiatek and Nadal unfold

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