New Haven Register
NEW HAVEN OPEN: Andrea Petkovic hoping to celebrate some wins with post-match dancing
By CHRIS HUNN
Aug 17 2012
There’s been the Twist, the Moonwalk and the Macarena.
Well how about the Petko?
Andrea Petkovic will be looking to show off some of her new dance moves next week at the New Haven Open. Main draw play begins Sunday at the Connecticut Tennis Center.
The German, who will turn 25 next month, is known for celebrating her victories with an on-court jig. And there have been plenty of them. Petkovic was the only player to reach the quarterfinals of three grand slams last year, rising to a career-high No. 9 world ranking.
The dancing tradition started with a bet back at the U.S. Open in 2010. She was struggling in the U.S. tournaments, so her coach told her if she wins in her first match against Nadia Petrova, she has to do something special. She went on to upset Petrova in three sets and held up her end of the bargain.
“That was the first thing that came to mind,” Petkovic said. “It was spontaneous and ever since it’s been there...I haven’t figured out a new [dance] yet. I don’t know what it’s going to be. I got a little tired of the old one so I have to figure out a new one.”
Petkovic will be hoping she gets that opportunity. It’s been a while. Injuries have plagued her 2012 season and she’s only been able to play eight matches. She went down with a back injury early in the year and missed three months. Then she came back in April only to injure her ankle. She will make her return in New Haven.
“I’m very excited,” said Petkovic, who is now ranked No. 27. “It wasn’t an easy time for me this year. I was injured all the time, and it was really tough and going through all the rehabilitation and not being able to practice. So I’m just so excited, especially to make my comeback here in the United States where I’ve had so many good results.”
Needless to say, there will be some rust. But she expects that. It will, perhaps, be hard to root against Petkovic, who has all the makings of becoming a fan favorite during her time in New Haven.
Along with her on-court dancing, she has her own YouTube channel called Petkorazzi. There, she posts entertaining videos and a behind-the-scene look at a tennis player.
“I just tried to show that we are fun people off the court,” Petkovic said. “Not only focused people on the court.”
On Thursday, she took part in the ribbon cutting for the refurbished tennis courts at McClain Park in New Haven. Petkovic played on the courts and joked with children from the Boys and Girls Club of New Haven.
“Match point, don’t get nervous,” she said with a smile, hitting a ball with a young boy and girl.
Shorlty after, she fell to her knees and put her arms in the air as if she was celebrating a Grand Slam victory.
“She’s articulate, she’s kind, funny, and a fabulous addition to our field,” tournament director Anne Worcester said. “While other players are tired from the Olympics and playing. She’s fresh because she’s come off this rest and rehab. So watch her this week. I have a good feeling about her.”