A new rising star is slowly emerging on the WTA tour in one of the most decorated tennis nations ever. Oceane Dodin continues to make her mark at higher levels of women’s professional tennis.
The teenager from France qualified for another WTA main draw today in Linz, which is something she has dealt with amazingly over the past few months as she attempts to transition from the gruelling ITF circuit and ply her trade on the highest level on the WTA Tour.
The importance of the coming months for Oceane Dodin
Dodin, who won her maiden WTA title in Quebec earlier this year, will recognise the significance of the next few months for the development of her tennis and career. The title win in Quebec represented the first time she had won a main draw match at a WTA tour event, which is remarkable for someone as talented as the tall 19-year-old.
If Dodin can consistently produce impressive WTA main draw wins at a young age it will enable her to feel less pressure as she grows into the body of an older player on tour. The negative impact of not establishing herself as a WTA regular can be severely detrimental for her future. The additional mental baggage, that sets back even the very best, can be extremely difficult to deal with at times.
People forget that tennis can be a very lonely, isolated sport. Alleviating the pressure on the individual is so important in professional tennis.
The star quality of Oceane Dodin
The most exciting element to the 19-year-old’s game is that she applies herself when required. We have witnessed very good players in the past that strike the ball similarly to Oceane Dodin. Yet they do not have the mental application to do that every single point. Dodin seems to be one of those players that has the right attitude even when the results are not necessarily working in her favour.
The Frenchwoman hits a mean ball. She has star quality on both the forehand and backhand and looks for short, sharp points. It will be intriguing to see whether the upside of Dodin’s game is enough to send her to the higher echelons of the women’s tour.
What could go wrong for Oceane Dodin?
Although Dodin has plenty of great characteristics it is possible that a lot can go wrong for the promising French player. She stands at six feet, which is an extremely tall height on the women’s tour – the same height as French Open champion Garbine Muguruza. The problem with players with such a frame is that they struggle with their court coverage. That is something that Dodin is trying to improve week after week.
Furthermore, Dodin is going to have to try and work on the consistency of her shots. The explosive and direct hitting is great to have when aiming to establish yourself on the tour, but consistency is what is required if a player wants to move to the highest rankings. A perfect example in that regard is Madison Keys.
Keys is someone that had the firepower to trouble the world’s elite, but did not have the consistency in results or her ground strokes. That has improved tremendously in 2016 as she sits at #7 in the world rankings. Dodin can look to power players like Keys as motivation to propel herself up the rankings of women’s professional tennis.
Can Oceane Dodin leave her mark on the Linz main draw?
It is possible that Oceane Dodin has a fantastic week in Austria. She enjoys the conditions of a faster indoor court, which we saw in Quebec. There she beat some good players who had played well in Canada previously. Dodin also benefits from the lack of variables on an indoor surface. There is no wind, rain or sun that can impact her concentration and that allows her to express herself more.
Dodin could back up that maiden WTA title and really create a buzz around the future of French Women’s tennis.