By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Monday May 29, 2023
Fans at Court 14 at Porte d’Auteuil spent the afternoon basking in glory Stan Wawrinkaswashbuckling tennis. For four hours and 35 minutes, the three-time Grand Slam champion annoyed fans, then sent everyone home with something to remember as he finished off Albert Ramos-Vinolas to take a record 11th victory in five sets at Roland-Garros.
While many in the audience pondered the twenty years of Wawrinka’s 38-year-old memories, the Swiss concentrates on one thing: the present.
“In this beautiful career that I’ve had, I don’t focus on the past,” said Wawrinka. “I’m always focused on the present, so I don’t always think about what I’ve achieved, what I’ve done in every tournament.
“For me, thinking about all this is the moment I stop playing. For as long as I’ve been playing, it’s always been important to be in the present, in the moment with goals for the future.
89th ranked Wawrinka he will face Thanasi Kokkinakis in the second round, he is ready to try for the third round of a Grand Slam for the first time since 2020.
“I’m very happy,” he said. “It was a very difficult match. Great battle. This is fantastic. But now I’m thinking about the next step.”
Wawrinka admits that the fans on court 14 played a big part in his success on Monday. It’s the energy he gained over the course of his career, regularly leaving his heart on the court.
They don’t call him Stanimal for nothing.
Court 14 is first-come-first-served and always full of loyal fans who appreciate seasoned veterans like Wawrinka.
The Swiss also appreciate them.
“I think today was special to be here, lots of support, lots of fans here,” said Wawrinka. “Today it helped me a lot to stay in the game and fight for it.
“I always try to make it special, I try to connect with the people, with the fans, because as I say, that’s one of the main reasons I play and I want to enjoy it as much as possible. So if I can stay five more minutes on the court, I will.