Novak Djokovic says he will 'keep going' after US Open win
Jessica Pegula may no longer be the top-ranked women’s tennis player in America, but she won’t be downbeat for long thanks to her positive approach to her own wellbeing. The 29-year-old dropped down to number 5 in the world rankings this week after her doubles partner Coco Gauff won the US Open in New York, replacing her in the third position.
Pegula was beaten in the fourth round at Flushing Meadows by fellow American Madison Keys and her quest to win the women’s doubles with Gauff was brought to an end in the quarterfinals by Hsieh Su-wei and Wang Xinyu.
However, alongside compatriot Austin Krajicek, she did reach the final of the mixed doubles competition, only to be denied victory at the last hurdle by Anna Danilina and Harri Heliovaara.
Despite that disappointment, Pegula has one singles title and two doubles titles with Gauff to her name this season, during what has been a successful campaign.
Away from the court, she has been talking about her mental health and how being around nature and the ocean has helped her enormously. The Buffalo-born star also revealed how laughing a lot keeps her upbeat in the most challenging of moments.
Pegula’s insight was shared as part of a WTA YouTube series called ‘Real Me’. During the third episode of the series, she is shown walking her dog on a beach.
Pegula said: “I love being out in nature. I think it’s so amazing for your mind, your body, just your overall presence. It just can really uplift your mood to be out. And I think getting sun and definitely being near to the ocean is important.
The American star went on to explain how she is sometimes hard on herself during tough times but allows herself to feel how she needs to before ‘snapping out of it’ and moving her perspective.
“I wouldn’t say I have a ton of anxiety but I think that’s also because I do keep myself busy and I like to work on things and have goals or challenges depending on if it’s tennis or if it’s off the court or something personal,” she said. “To me, it just keeps me in a good mindset.”
Pegula admitted that keeping herself busy prevents her from over-analysing things and she has plenty of interests that allow her to do that.
“I love journaling, I love playing video games and also just making time for myself. I think especially on tour you have to balance things,” she said.
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When asked what makes her happy, she added: “I think, setting really small goals and being able to achieve them. It kind of helps me get through a really tough day. Having a good sense of humour about all of those things as well, I think really helps me – having fun and laughing a lot.”
One thing Pegula is never likely to have to be concerned about is financial worries. Dubbed the richest tennis player in the world, she is the daughter of billionaire Buffalo Bills owner Terry Pegula and stands to inherit a portion of his £5.38 billion net worth.
But the former world No. 3 is successful in her own right, having earned more than £8.4 million in prize money on the WTA tour.
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