Retired champion Sam Stosur, one of many nation’s best consultant gamers, has been introduced as the brand new captain of Australia’s Billie Jean King Cup group.
Sam Stosur has taken the subsequent step in her illustrious tennis profession, shifting into the position of Australian Billie Jean King Cup group captain.
The eight-time Grand Slam champion takes the reins from Alicia Molik, who led the group for 10 years and guided Australia to finals in 2019 and 2022.
As Molik shifts her focus to changing into match director on the Adelaide Worldwide, Stosur will information a group she first performed for 20 years in the past, when she debuted in singles in 2003.
Stosur stated she nonetheless remembers that tie, in opposition to Colombia in Wollongong, when Molik was her teammate and Stosur was simply 19 years previous.
“I’ve acquired years of taking part in expertise and one factor that I do know is how the ladies really feel whenever you stroll out on the courtroom to play for Australia. I do know that feeling of doing it for the primary time,” Stosur instructed tennis.com.au.
“You’ll be able to’t actually clarify till you’re in that state of affairs to know what it’s going to really feel like happening a courtroom to play in Billie Jean King Cup, in comparison with a traditional match – even the primary time taking part in the Australian Open. It actually, actually is a unique expertise.
“So I do know I’ve acquired all these completely different areas of my very own taking part in profession that I can pull from. Having that understanding, when somebody’s actually nervous or one thing, to know, ‘oh yeah I completely get it’. It’s not going to be a shock if that occurs. You’ll be able to then try to navigate that collectively and are available out on high, or in a great way.
“Alicia’s executed a tremendous job on this position, together with her management with the gamers. Everybody at all times needs to be a part of the group; there’s an amazing group tradition. The 2 finals that we made … everybody’s very, very pleased with that and hopefully someday we will go that one step additional.
“I feel the camaraderie between the gamers and all the pieces that she’s helped create over a extremely very long time is vitally necessary to try to preserve emulating and actually engaged on.
“Little doubt I’ll most likely name Alicia numerous occasions for a bit of recommendation right here and there (laughter). However I’d love to simply try to preserve the foundations that she’s been capable of construct.
“You knew she absolutely believed in you on the courtroom. As a participant I at all times felt that and knew that was necessary. Actually that’s one factor I need to try to move on now on this new position.”
Stosur completed her Billie Jean King Cup profession with 29 singles victories – an Australian document – plus a glittering 10-1 document in doubles.
In her final match within the competitors, she partnered with Storm Hunter to pip British duo Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls and ship Australia into the 2022 closing in Glasgow.
It was the identical factor she did alongside Ash Barty in opposition to Belarus, a decisive doubles rubber victory in Brisbane which propelled the Aussie group into the 2019 closing.
She performed 34 ties in complete, constructing a 39-21 win-loss total.
Stosur ended her taking part in profession just some months after that 2022 Billie Jean King Cup closing, at this yr’s Australian Open.
The previous world No.4 and 2011 US Open singles champion stated she was “tremendous excited” to discover this subsequent part of her profession.
“For a very long time I’d clearly been very curious about Australian tennis, particularly the ladies’ aspect,” she defined.
“This yr I used to be completely happy simply to be dwelling and never fear an excessive amount of (about my subsequent steps). Clearly I did the commentary and that aspect of issues, so I really feel like I’ve saved my foot within the door, not less than within the tennis world.
“With out a query I used to be going to remain within the sport; I simply hadn’t absolutely labored out precisely how. After which this began being a chance.
“So I’m glad that it’s ended up being this position.”