Peterson defeated, with some difficulty, 17-year-old Klara Milicevic in two straight sets after facing an early downfall in Falkenberg's summer tour competition. The victory figures were written 7–5, 6–2.

- It felt very unusual but I'm glad I went through the game and managed to win, says the 24-year-old.

- She (Klara Milicevic) played well today. I'll give her that and it was pretty tough at first. I lost focus and you can't really afford that, she continues.

Raking gravel

The match is 24-year-old Peterson's first since the beginning of March when tennis, along with much of the sports world, was put on ice as a result of the corona pandemic. This week the grand slam tournament Wimbledon would be played and next week was the idea that Rebecca Peterson would play tennis in Båstad.

Instead, Sweden's best-ranked tennis player sweeps his half of the dirt track five in Falkenberg after Friday's win in front of just under 50 spectators. She is just happy to be back.

- It feels fun. They have managed it very well, she says.

The 24-year-old was in the best shape of her life in the fall and took great strides in the world rankings when she briefly won the career's first two singles titles on the WTA Tour. But last winter, Peterson wrestled with a wriggling disc in her back that kept her away from the tennis court for periods. The Corona residence has therefore provided much needed time for recovery.

- I'm not happy about everything happening in the world. But if I want to see something positive in it, it was good for the sake of my career that I got this break, otherwise it could have gone pretty bad. Now the body has had to take the time it needs to get well, she says.

"Could go bad"

The 44-ranked Peterson is first seeded in the Falkenberg race, which is being decided this weekend, where players such as Cornelia Lister and Caijsa Hennemann will compete. The goal is to win, but also to get much needed match before the return of tennis in less than a month.

- As soon as I step onto the track I'm there to win. But I'm also here to feel that I hold, health is the most important thing, says Peterson.

On Saturday, Rebecca Peterson meets Fanny Östlund and Cornelia Lister. And on August 3, the WTA tour is scheduled to start again in Palermo, Italy. Then Swedenettan will be in place.

- Yes, the goal is to play in Palermo.

TT: How do you think about the rest of the season?

- It's hard to know what it's going to be like. You have to take it as it comes and if the tour starts it will be fun to play again so I look forward to it. There is much to learn and develop, she says.

ARCHIVE: Peterson injured and unemployed: "A good time to be completely healthy" (April 1, 2020)

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Rebecca Peterson won two WTA titles and would take the next step when the injury problems came between. Photo: TT