It's not very often that one of the top-100 women tennis players in the world plays in a city the size of Macon, Georgia, but it is happening this week at the ButlerCars.com Tennis Classic of Macon being held at the Jaime Kaplan Tennis Center at Stratford Academy.
Ranked No. 86 in the world, 20-year old Ajla Tomljanovic has played at the French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open this year. In 2013, she has beaten the likes of Julia Goerges, Andrea Petkovic, and Bethanie Mattek-Sands.
Still, this 5'11" player from Zagreb, Croatia finds herself in Macon this week for a tournament offering $25,000 in total prize money and 50 WTA ranking points to its winner.
It's tennis, so it's always fun," explained Tomljanovic following her 6-3, 6-2 win over American and former USC player Danielle Lao. "It doesn't matter which stage, it's fun. Obviously everyone would like to play on a bigger stage, but I have the same mindset, so it doesn't make a difference."
Even with the win today, Tomjanovic says she's not pleased with her game at the moment.
“I’m working up to it,” smiled the hard-hitting righty. "Hopefully with every match I will get better.”
She's really hoping her serve comes around starting on Friday since that stroke sets up the rest of her game.
"Today my serve wasn't working, on a few key points it came, but maybe that is what I'll be working on."
As for what the tennis professional is doing around Macon, shes getting out a little.
"I actually went downtown to get dinner and to see the campus (Mercer University) and it's really a nice place," added Tomljanovic.
And where did she eat?
"It was like this cafe place... Molly's, it was really nice and different. I had the specialty grilled chicken salad. The waitress told me to come back every time I win."
Tomljanovic said she can superstitious during a tournament and at the U.S. Open she ate at Chipolte every day until her dad told her not to.
And the next match- she lost.
It's healthy food said the 20-year old. Just don't get sour cream or cheese.
There's something you don't hear someone not far removed from being a teenager usually say.