Not even a second-round Wimbledon defeat could wipe the Luna Park smile off Daria Gavrilova’s face after the bubbly youngster learnt of her Olympic selection.
Born in Games-obsessed Russia, the 22-year-old covets Olympic gold as much as grand slam glory and will get her chance when she teams with Australian No.1 Samantha Stosur in doubles in Rio.
Gavrilova has also qualified for the 64-strong singles draw and couldn’t be happier, despite bombing out of Wimbledon with a 6-3 6-2 loss to 2014 Australian Open runner-up Dominika Cibulkova.
“When I heard the news this afternoon I was walking around Wimbledon as if I just won my match today,” Gavrilova told AAP.
“Everyone was, like: `Why are you so happy?’
“Yeah, Fed Cup in April and now the Olympics, it’s very special.”
Fed Cup captain Alicia Molik clinched a cherished singles bronze medal in Athens in 2004 and Gavrilova said not even the Zika virus would keep her from heading to Brazil.
“Well, it is a concern but whatever,” she said.
“If someone would ever ask me: `Would you rather win a grand slam or an Olympic gold medal? I can’t pick one.
“The Olympics is something super special. I’m super excited and we’ve all been talking about the Olympics.
“I’ve heard a lot of stories from Sam and Alicia, but obviously it’s going to be different experiencing it.
“It’s going to be pretty cool playing with Sam.”