Barbora Krejcikova: I’m one of the players that can challenge the current women’s Big Three – Players’ Voice


Barbora Krejcikova has shared her belief that she can challenge the ‘Big Three’ in women’s tennis of Iga Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka and Elena Rybakina, whilst also opening up on her unusual psychological approach to the sport.

The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of my 2021 French Open win is when I was walking with the trophy to the stand in front of the ceremony stage, lifting up the trophy.

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I think it’s definitely one of the best feelings in my tennis career.

It was a surprise for everybody and a big surprise in Czech Republic. It was a big surprise I think even for me, for my coach, for my family, for everybody.

But also somewhere inside of me, I felt that if I can win these things in doubles and in mixed doubles, why can’t I win it in singles? Because I felt that my game can get there.

The win didn’t really change anything in tennis for me. Outside of tennis, for myself, I achieved something that I was hoping I could achieve, but also that I never actually thought that I could.

So it was really mixed emotions, up and down, and I definitely wasn’t prepared for winning it. But I’m really happy that I did, and I think since then I became a much better player.

I feel that it showed me that I can actually play the highest level, that I should keep going, that I should keep practising and working hard, as some other good things can happen.

Jana Novotna [former Czech world No. 2 who died in 2017] was my big inspiration when I won Roland-Garros and is still the person that I look up to. And I really wish, I would really like to know what she would have told me after lifting the trophy, and after me getting this high and this far, having so many good tournaments and many achievements.

It would be really nice to hear what she thinks.

I think for me, it was a really big motivational energy that I got from that title. To be honest, if you want to do well in tennis or in anything that you do, you always have some kind of expectations, and we always put a little bit pressure on ourselves because you want to do well and you want to keep playing well in every single tournament.

That’s also why it was really difficult losing in the first round of Roland-Garros as defending champion in 2022.

After three months out injured with my elbow, then playing my first tournament, at a Slam, and defending the title, it was very difficult.

I felt really prepared, and I think I was doing actually well. But then I lost the match and in the middle of the second set I just lost the energy and everything and I didn’t actually know why.

At the press conference I was really sad about it and was just super disappointed. The next day I figured out that I had Covid-19.

So for me, after my 2021 win, 2022 was really a bad Roland-Garros. But that’s sports, that’s life. And I definitely just think that again, I learned a lot from that.

The most important thing for me is to stay healthy. And when I can stay healthy, I can play good tennis again.

A lot of things in my tennis career need to come from me, so I really have to be strong and I have to believe.

And then I have good people around me. I have my coach, I have my fitness coach and my psychologist, and definitely some friends, and most importantly my family, some of my brothers and everybody in the family, they really support me and they watch all the matches and sometimes they even come to the tournament. So they are very supportive.

‘She is looking after me from up there’ – Krejcikova’s journey to shock French Open title

I said something back at the Miami Open that I feel it’s good that we have players like Iga Swiatek, Elena Rybakina and Aryna Sabalenka that are dominating the tour, but I also think that there are so many players that are really consistent, and they are actually trying to make it harder for them. And I believe I’m one of them.

There are also other really good players that are ahead of me that are trying to make it as well. I just felt like at the beginning of the year I was really playing well, and I won in Dubai, and I was kind of forgotten.

Those three are such a good players, but everything was about them. I didn’t really understand why it’s not about other players as well. Why is it only just three names, but not about other players that are playing well and are really consistent and having really good results? They are not mentioned anywhere.

I’m not just saying that because I want some kind of attention. I just felt like ‘hello, guys!’ I played really well in Dubai and I beat all the players. So why does nobody know about it?

I’m not really a person that likes to have goals, because if I do, then usually it just puts more pressure on, and I put extra pressure on myself. I don’t think it helps it for me.

Match Winner Barbora Krejcikova of Czech Republic kisses the winners trophy after the Women’s final on day fourteen of the 2021 French Open at Roland Garros on June 12, 2021 in Paris,

Image credit: Getty Images

So I don’t really have any goals. I would like to play well, and definitely every tournament I go to I want to play well and I want to get as far as I can, but it’s not always possible. But I just go like that.

And I think as all the players are just so consistent, sometimes this player wins, another time that player gets the title. Because the level we have is really high, and we are very close to each other in the top 20, the level is very close.

My relationship with clay, it’s been really good. Two years ago it was great, last year I didn’t play, so I missed that part of the season.

And this year, I feel that I really changed and that I have become a different person and different player. And I feel I have to actually find new ways to use my weapons on the clay again, because two years ago, I was just slicing and just looping the ball, and now I’m just playing different tennis.

I believe that I can do well again and I can get another major title. But usually if you say ‘I’m gonna win another title’, then it never comes. I’m just going to try to play my best tennis. If it comes, it comes.

Three years ago, I was playing ITF tournaments and I wasn’t able to get into the top 100. And now I’m here with all the success. So let’s just stay humble and keep going and keep having fun.

I just want to be remembered as a very good tennis player.

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Follow Barbora Krejcikova on Instagram (@bkrejcikova) and Twitter (


Stream the 2023 French Open live on discovery+, the Eurosport app and at

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15/03/2023 AT 09:03

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