German rising star Anna-Lena Friedsam answered questions regarding motivation, brutal losses and Serena Williams after winning the ITF Shrewsbury title on Saturday – her first trophy since coming back from injury.
Friedsam made a name for herself on the WTA tour by taking Serena to the brink of defeat at the 2015 French Open. The German also served for the match over Agnieszka Radwanska in the 2016 Australian Open fourth round, but went down in three sets after suffering cramp in her legs.
The German looked steadily on the rise despite the loss: peaking at world no. 45 in the rankings last August. But disaster struck when Friedsam was hit by shoulder injury in late 2016, eventually requiring surgery that sidelined her for months.
The 23-year-old was ranked outside the world’s top 1000 in Shrewsbury, qualifying for the event and needing to win seven matches to claim the title. Her final victim was top seed Lesley Kerkhove, and she came from a double break down in the first set to claim a straight sets victory.
After her triumph, Friedsam answered fan questions ranging from promotion of tennis in Germany to the most memorable moments of her career, and what she would be doing if she wasn’t a tennis player.