This is more than simple stage fright. A new interview that Stan Wawrinka gave to Le Matin Dimanche, a Swiss newspaper, reveals the depths of mental anguish and heights of mental strength that a player can experience.
Psychological anguish and other factors have seen players including Mardy Fish and Rebecca Marino retire from tennis in recent years. Per Deadspin, via a translation from stalwart tennis writer Stephanie Myles, Wawrinka pushed himself to physical limits he didn't know he had so as to drown out the so-called "voices" in his head that led to a tear-filled stress attack before his name was called to walk out into Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Wawrinka talks about what was going on in his mind, and body, as he won the US Open. Insightful.— Stephanie Myles (@OpenCourt) October 3, 2016
(English Translation). pic.twitter.com/meRsY9A2Zn
"I was hurting so much, I was pushing myself so hard, I was so out of break that i finally ended up muffling those little voices in my head… " he said.
"Now, I have to relax the machine a bit."