Twenty year old Japanese Nao Hibino made it to her first ever Semifinal on the WTA tour reaching the last four at Tashkent Open , in the quarterfinals played today Hibino outplayed Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Kozlova 6/3,6/3
The week has turned out to be dream week for the young Japanese who was supposed to play in the qualifying rounds of the event. Reaching Tashkent She found herself in the main draw first , then got a walk over from Sasnovich in the second round and a win today making it to her first ever semifinals which guarantees Hibino an entry into the top 100 rankings next week.
Hibino who was facing the media for the first time spoke to the Tashkent Open Media Team
Q. About her match today?
A. I knew Kozlova is a good player , I decided play aggressive and use more forehands and avoid long rallies , I tried to set up points and finish the points. This paid off
Q How has been the year so far ?
A. At the beginning of the year I was around 210 , and had tough year didn't have good results , but my coach advised me to keep playing and I played some weeks in Europe and USA , here I worked on the physical conditioning , This helped me I won three $ 50000 ITF events this season in Japan and USA and my rankings also improved drastically .
Q. Plans for the remaining of the year ?
A. I'm thrilled my rankings going up now I will try to play more WTA and focus is to be around top50 by the end of next year. So i will be working harder.
Q. Did you know The win here today will take you in top 100 ?
A. Oh I didn't think of this at all , Didn't expect to go this far . I'm thrilled thank you very much for letting me know
Q . There are 3 Japanese girls in the top 100 on the WTA Tour now you are the fourth?
A. We have good Japanese girls but I'm not competing with them , My coach always says focus on top 50 you have to be there.
Q. Your thoughts about Uzbekistan ?
A I had played an ITF in Fergana earlier , also I had some concerns before a lot of people told me not to go , but I can tell everyone this is one of the best countries in the world. The people are kind atmosphere is great , people are trying to make my stay comfortableQ About the Tashkent Open?
Date of Birth: 26 Aug 1990
Birthplace: Bucharest, Romania
Height: 5’ 11" (1.81 m)
WTA Singles Ranking – 58 (As of August 20, 2018)
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