Emma Raducanu said she uses her injury setbacks as on-court fuel after battling through the return of a right wrist issue to beat Danka Kovinic 6-2 6-3 in the first round of Indian Wells on Thursday.
The 20-year-old Briton has suffered from a torrent of health issues of late including an ankle injury in the lead up to January's Australian Open, tonsillitis that forced her to withdraw ahead of last week's Austin Open and the wrist, which cut short her 2022 season.
"I just love competing even when you are fighting through it," she told reporters when asked how she stays positive amid the health struggles.
Back on the big stage ??#TennisParadise | @EmmaRaducanu pic.twitter.com/WKxmWeV2oJ— BNP Paribas Open (@BNPPARIBASOPEN) March 9, 2023
"Having something that you're going through gives you in some ways more incentive. I've got to be aggressive, I've got to dominate. I just find a way to use it to my advantage as much as I can."
Raducanu, who won the 2021 US Open, showed a lot of heart at the tournament in the Southern California desert on Thursday, battling back from an early break down in both sets to defeat Danka Kovinic 6-2 6-3.
She said her strategy at this point was to not look too far into the future.
"I'm not 100 per cent but you never really are," she said.
"The short term plan is to manage it as best as possible. Managing the load, not train as much.
"Get through the tournament and evaluate after."