After holding the No1 ranking for a month last autumn, Dubai Championships second seed Garbine Muguruza remains keen for another taste of life at the top of the WTA.
“It is important,” the Spaniard said yesterday at the Aviation Club. “I always have it in my mind, to be able to fight for that.
“It was a great feeling to be there [at No1], even though it’s tough. I know it’s the hardest one, but I’m going to be there, try to.”
The world No3 arrived in the emirate after playing the weekend Doha final against Petra Kvitova prior to the Czech’s Dubai pullout due to fatigue after winning 13 straight matches and two titles.
Wimbledon winner Muguruza said that after reaching the WTA summit, her intensity to play for ranking may have tapered off – but she keeps that goal at the top of her tennis agenda.
The WTA top ranking was a revolving door in 2017, with five women holding the spot during the season.
“When you’re No1, you feel like every tournament you play, you kind of almost have to win it.
“You have to always maintain a super-high level for everyone you play because everybody’s playing super-relaxed, with nothing to lose.
“You feel a lot of pressure. There are a lot of things to control.”
The 24-year-old added: “You realise a lot of things when you’re there.
“You’re like: ‘I’m here, I can’t go more up, all I can do is go down. There’s all these girls that want my spot, I have to defend it.’
“You have this, like, alarm all the time.”
Muguruza, seeded to meet holder Elina Svitolina in the final, said she is less stressed by her ranking now that she’s been to the top and back.
“I’m trying to be a little bit less [intense]. Now [today’s]type of game and players, it’s going to be a lot of movement. I don’t want to be thinking every tournament what are the options for this and for that.
“Because I was already No1 last year, it’s less dramatic. I always know there’s a chance. That’s fine for me.”