Madison Keys has had an incredible second part of the year thus far, storming back from two wrist surgeries for an impressive comeback to professional tennis. During her injury layoff, former world number one and fellow American Lindsay Davenport rejoined her coaching team following a split after their partnership in 2015 when Keys made her first Grand Slam semifinal at the Australian Open.
Impressive results in the USA
Playing in front of her home crowd, Keys was able to claim the title at the Bank of the West Classic out of nowhere after defeating compatriot Coco Vandeweghe in the final. Her excellent run continued at the Western and Southern Open, where she could have earned her second consecutive win over soon-to-be world number one Garbine Muguruza in as many weeks, but failed to convert three match points as the Spaniard eventually went on to claim the title.
The best is saved for the last as Keys stormed to the final of the US Open having claimed some impressive victories along the way, including her incredible comeback win over fourth seed Elina Svitolina and straight-sets steamroll over Coco Vandeweghe in the semifinals. Being overwhelmed by the pressure, Keys fell in her first Grand Slam final but her performances definitely show that more major finals would follow in the future.
Davenport makes her comments
“She knew it was a great opportunity, and she just had nothing left in the tank. So she was pretty upset,” mentioned Davenport, a former Grand Slam champion herself, at a press conference in Flushing Meadows after the tournament. Although Keys was pretty upset with the loss, she was extremely happy for her opponent Sloane Stephens, who is her best friend on tour.
“She has improved and changed and matured. I have to say, everybody around her is so happy for her,” Davenport claimed. Keys had previously credited the change in her attitude to her supportive coaching team, and many would have seen the progress the American has made from a teenage girl who stepped out on Centre Court of the Mutua Madrid Open as a lucky-loser and beat Li Na, to a player who sounds like a veteran on tour with her matured thinking despite being just 22 years of age.
“Obviously, as I told her, one match changes nothing. Everything that you have done or are doing these last three months are going to put you in a position to have another opportunity for that chance. We are leaving here [with] me thrilled [and] sad, but thrilled for her and excited for the future.” With such an encouraging and supportive coach, the future for Keys is definitely bright. The partnership between Davenport and Keys has been generally very successful, and this could be a formidable pairing in due course if the American manages to improve some aspects of her game.
Davenport believes that Keys can definitely earn another opportunity to claim her first Grand Slam title, and the 22-year-old’s positive attitude and tough mentality will certainly prove to be crucial in the near future.