Raonic pleased with performance

DAN ILIKA, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:00 AM ET

After a surprising run at the Australian Open, Canadian Milos Raonic has put the tennis world -- and most of Canada -- on watch.

Despite his fourth-round loss to No. 7 seed David Ferrer Monday, Raonic said he is pleased with his second Grand Slam appearance.

"I felt it was a good match and there's nothing I can be other than happy with the results and my progress," Raonic said.

Raonic also can be happy with his world ranking.

Entering the tournament Down Under the rising star was No. 152 overall. After the Australian Open is finished, he will be in the top 100.

"I was hoping to achieve the top 50 but my goal for this year is to be in the top 10 and I think that's achievable," Raonic said.

Raonic's stellar run in Melbourne started with upsets over 85th-ranked Bjorn Phau of Germany, No. 22 Michael Llorda of France and No. 10 seed Mikhail Youzhny of Russia in the first three rounds, before bowing out to Ferrer.

The 20-year old Thornhill, Ont., resident became the first Canadian male in a decade to make it to the third round of a singles Grand Slam event and the first qualifier in 12 years to make it to the fourth round of a Grand Slam, but Raonic is keeping his composure.

"Having the results I had people would think it would go to your head," the up-and-comer said. "To be at the top you have to have humility and you have to be humble."

While Raonic is gaining a reputation for his dominating serve, the Montenegroborn youngster knows where he needs to improve in order to be successful at the highest level.

"I feel the biggest strength I have is being able to dictate games," Raonic said. "I feel I do need to work on my net game."

Raonic said his backhand game and his movement on the court have improved over the years and his serve gives him options on the court.

Raonic trained in Spain under new coach Galo Blanco during the off-season and went back to the basics with his training.

"I took a lot of time to work on just general fitness," Raonic said of his off-season training. "Throughout the last few years I was having a lot of troubles with my knees (and) I managed to get my knees in good shape and I was running every day."

Raonic has stops in Johannesburg, San Jose, and Memphis, before heading to Acapulco, Mexico to prepare for Canada's Davis Cup tie against Mexico March 4-6.


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