RPT-Tennis-Deal with the heat, says ambitious Radwanska

Mon Jan 7, 2013 8:49am GMT

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Jan 7 (Reuters) - World number four Agnieszka Radwanska has shrugged off any notions of fatigue and the prospect of blistering temperatures in the build-up to the Australian Open.

Radwanska, the top seed for the Sydney International, arrived in Australia at the weekend after winning a warm-up in Auckland, which she said had been perfect preparation.

"Actually I couldn't imagine a better start to the year," the 23-year-old Pole told reporters in Sydney on Monday.

"It was my first time in Auckland so I had a really good couple matches and good preparation before coming here and going to the Australian Open.

"I had already five matches, which is a lot. It's always good to have a lot of matches in the beginning of the year."

As top seed, Radwanska was given a bye into the Sydney second round where she will meet Japanese veteran Kimiko Date-Krumm in the first match on centre court on Tuesday when temperatures are expected to exceed 40 Celsius.

"Tomorrow it's going to be very, very hot here, so I think it's also will be good preparation for Melbourne," the Wimbledon runner-up added of forecasts that will put officials on alert for player safety.

"I think it's challenge for everyone. Everybody has the same conditions. Sometimes this kind of weather can be in the semi-final of a grand slam as well and you have to play and be prepared."

Radwanska rose to second in the world last year, her highest career ranking, before finishing fourth and plans to consolidate her ranking in the top three, if not reach the number one spot.

"I think the goals every year are pretty much the same," she said. "Of course be number one and winning the grand slams. Last year was very close.

"There is nothing simple here. To be number one, it's just not about one or two tournaments you have to play the whole year very good to have those kind of points to be number one and to be on top."

Having also had a taste of the grand slam title - she was beaten by Serena Williams in last year's Wimbledon final - Radwanska said she was keen for more.

"I think every match on the grand slam, especially in the second week of the grand slam, it's a great experience.

"When I was going on the Centre Court at Wimbledon it was huge difference than the usual final."

(Reporting by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington; Editing by Alastair Himmer)

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