Sam Stosur (foreground) hits with Alicia Molik at the National Tennis Centre at Melbourne Park; Tennis Australia

Sam enjoying Melbourne, but Sydney has her heart

For the second year in a row, Sam Stosur has conducted a significant portion of her pre-season training at Melbourne Park.

But would the 2011 US Open champion relocate to the home of the year’s first Grand Slam event?

“No, I’d just want to be by the beach,” she laughed, a reference to life in her adopted city of Sydney.

“The one thing I’ve missed being here is at the end of day, just being able to finish your gym session and jump into the ocean for 10 minutes and recover, relax and do all that. That’s the one thing I have missed.”

Stosur has nonetheless enjoyed her time in Melbourne.

The world No.27 is getting her bearings of the city and has delighted in taking advantage of the facilities at the impressive National Tennis Centre at Melbourne Park.

She has hit with Australian Fed Cup captain Alicia Molik, completed gym sessions alongside emerging star Daria Gavrilova and has embraced the change-up of her new arrangement with physical performance coach Stefano Barsacchi, who is based in Melbourne.

“I’ve actually really enjoyed it – obviously you can’t get better facilities than this, and I’ve enjoyed working with some of the other girls,” she said.

“I’ve been in Sydney for six, seven, eight years now doing my pre-season. At Homebush you’ve obviously got all the courts and all that and I could use NSWIS (New South Wales Institute of Sport) gym (nearby). But I had also my own gym I would go to in Sydney and everything’s set up.

“In Sydney, there’s my gym, there’s the oval, there’s the beach, and I’ve got everything right there … it’s obviously all inside here and it’s easy.

“I’d like to be home (in Sydney) a little bit more. But if you get exactly what you need out of (being in Melbourne) training wise and you’re prepared for the year ahead, then it’s worth it.

“It’s a good sacrifice.”