‘Flat’ Dan Evans laments ‘bittersweet’ title, saying ‘no one is going to remember I won’ in a few weeks

Australian Open
Dan Evans disappointed

The ups and downs of sport can be cruel sometimes and Dan Evans admits he has gone through the full repertoire in recent days as he fell at the first hurdle of the Australian Open, just days after winning his maiden ATP Tour title.

Evans went into Tuesday’s first-round clash against fellow Brit Cameron Norrie on a high after beating Felix Auger-Aliassime in the final of the Murray River Open on Sunday.

He reached a career-high of No 26 on the back of that result and as the British No 1 he was the favourite to beat Norrie.

However, he was slow out of the blocks as he lost the opening set and, although he drew level in the second, Norrie came out on tops with a 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 victory.

Afterwards Evans admitted that the title-winning run from last week had a negative impact on him.

“I think when you’re flat mentally, it pays off on you physically. I wasn’t very energetic, started very slowly,” he said.

“You know, I prepared as well as I could, but I could feel myself talking a lot, and it was tough to get out of. I was definitely probably tired mentally, and then – I did a good job to hang in the match.

“But yeah, this is sort of exactly the reason I told you guys I wouldn’t play the week before the Grand Slams was to try and conserve my body, and it’s happened again.

“Obviously the circumstances have dictated that, but he lost first round last week, got shed-loads of practice in this week and then probably could dictate his own days, and I didn’t get that chance. Granted, I won last week, but it doesn’t feel that good now.

“So yeah, it’s a bit bittersweet really. Like I want to do well in the Grand Slams, and due respect to that tournament, no one is going to remember I won that in three weeks’ time.

“Yeah, it’s difficult to swallow, but you know, it is what it is now. I’ve had worse, so just move on.”

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