Monday’s announcement of Arantxa Sanchez Vicario being named a WTA Finals ambassador had plenty of special meanings to the four-time Grand Slam champion. Not only was the news revealed at Roland Garros, where the Spanaird held a 73-13 record, but the Finals in Singapore hold a special place in the former World No.1’s heart. “It was the first trip overseas I had when I was 14. I just started my career and after that trip, I was No.80 in the world. I say ‘Road to Singapore’ and I had mine in 1986, so imagine all of the time since then when I go back, see these people and play this great event,” Sanchez Vicario said in an interview with The Tennis Podcast
On top of her Ambassador duties, Sanchez Vicario will participate in the WTA Legends event at the Finals and will compete with and against fellow Ambassador Martina Navratilova. “She wants to win and if I’m with her, that’s great and you will probably win and if you play against her, you want to beat her. It will be great to play with her because we were partners for a couple of years and we get along really well. It’s always a pleasure to play with or against her.”
Sanchez Vicario also mentioned WTA Rising Star Garbiñe Muguruza, who reached her second consecutive quarterfinal at Roland Garros. She sees a bright future for Mugurza, who is hoping to qualify for her first WTA Finals in singles. “She showed last year that she belonged when she beat Serena. If she can continue with the confidence that she belongs, she can still be dangerous.”
Sanchez Vicario is also one of a few select players with a winning record against World No.1 Serena Williams, who also leads the Road to Singapore Singles Leaderboard. “I never played the same shot twice against her and I would fight until the end and it was all about strategy with her.” Sanchez Vicario finished her interview by noting that if physically and emotionally healthy, Serena could pass Steffi Graf’s all-time Grand Slam singles title record.