R2: Satomi Watanabe 3-0 Marie Stephan

[13] Satomi Watanabe (JPN) 3-0 Marie Stephan (FRA)  11-3, 11-2, 11-3 (21m)

Next opponent: Mariam Metwally / Nour El Tayeb

A very frustrated – with herself – Marie today, had a little treatment for her back in the second game, it’s been troubling her since she arrived here.

Satomi still as sharp as ever. She is looking incredibly good, and should be looked as a definite contender.

Satomi : Marie is a good friend of mine off court. I know her actual personality, but when it comes to sports, all those aggressions, those passions come on court. I just separate on and off court in my mind, and I’m sure it’s the same for my opponent. So anything that is happening emotionally on court, I try not to let them into my mind. It’s not like I’m ignoring them, but I respect them, of course, but still, it’s a battle between us.

I have to make sure I keep my calm to be more aware of what’s happening on court. Especially as I am most of the time on my own during my match – at the moment I have a player from my country who is helping me. So most of the time, I need to make up my mind very quickly to analyse what is happening to give myself some advice. So today, I tried not to take too many emotions on bord from Marie.

I’m pretty happy with the way I played today, I was sticking to my game plan, trying to make her work hard for every single point. I was trying not to give her any cheap points, which actually I did a few times. But right after I managed another good long rally, again and again to make her feel mentally that it was hard to get points out of me.

I love playing in Egypt. There is a massive interest for the sport in the country, a lot of spectators, there is a lot of energy, and that’s what you want as a player. Of course, it’s always the country who produces the best players in the world. So it’s great to watch and study other players, and also to keep on track with what is happening, I am very careful of watching the wild card. There is always someone new, someone different, and that allows me to keep updating my squash and my way of looking at the sport.