Sunday, May 25, 2008
Interview with Ana Ivanovic
Q. So what can you say about your first match here,
and more specifically about the second set? It was a
little bit harder.
ANA IVANOVIC: Yes. First of all, I'm very happy with
the victory. It was very nice to come back here to
Paris and go out there and play again, you know.
It was the first match of the tournament, so it was
the first time experience for me. But I really
enjoyed it out there. She gave me a tough match,
especially in the second set.
I let my intensity go down for a bit, dropped for a
bit, and she used it and she started playing much
better. But towards the end I'm happy that I found
back my game and managed to break her back, and win
the second set.
Q. Congratulations, first. Who do you see as your
biggest rival to reach the final and win Roland
Garros this year? And do you think you have a better
chance to actually win the final when you compare to
last year when you've lost to Justine Henin?
ANA IVANOVIC: It's very hard to talk about the
rivals, because I know it sounds cliché, but it is
like that. We take match by match. Every opponent
can be dangerous if you let them play, so I really
don't ‑‑ I didn't even see the draw, who I play
against. So in the future just step by step,
basically. That's what helps me to play my best and
perform the best I can.
But your other question was about the final. In the
case I play final again, for sure I will ‑‑ I think
I will perform much, much better than I did last
But last year was a great experience, you know, and,
yeah, don't regret it.
Q. This is the best time of your career, but you
didn't play as well as last year on clay. Can you
explain exactly why?
ANA IVANOVIC: Uhm, yeah. This year it's ‑‑ I'm in
different position than I was last year. Last year I
just broke into top 10, and, you know, I had much
less pressure, honestly speaking.
Now I'm No. 2, and obviously I have more
expectations for myself. So that's something I'm
still learning how to deal with it. And this year, I
had to play tournaments that I had to defend the
title, so it was a new experience but, you know, I'm
I'm only 20, so I really tried to enjoy every match.
I think I'm doing a good job. Obviously it was a
little bit hard last few weeks, but now I feel I
have my game back.
Q. The first set score looks pretty good, but of
course it was not an easy first set, and it was
difficult for you to put together a string of five
or six really good points in a row. Is there any way
you can come out of the chute faster, start faster?
ANA IVANOVIC: Today my goal was just to basically
get rhythm, and I was really happy with my game in
the first set. I thought I did pretty much
everything. She wasn't playing really badly at all.
I was doing everything, you know, I spoke with my
coaches before and we were practicing. And obviously
I tried to set myself in a position to hit a good
stroke and a winner. I wasn't overhitting and
overpowering from the first shot on. That was my
goal for today, so I'm happy about it.
Q. What do you think about your serve in the first
set? It was not so good.
ANA IVANOVIC: I think percentage of my serve was a
little bit low, and I had quite a few double faults.
But otherwise, yeah, I think it's something I've
been working on in last couple days, and I've been
practicing really well.
So little bit I was disappointed in my first serves,
but still, you know, I got through today's match,
and I get chance to work on it more.
Q. When you see someone like Justine retire at the
top of the game, does it make you think you might
want to take some breaks along the way in your
career to lessen the intensity and the pressure?
ANA IVANOVIC: I think it's important through the
year to get enough time also for rest and recovery,
and then prepare again.
Because there is lots of tournaments, and if you
play week after week you get burned ‑‑ you get
burned out. Maybe you can last one or two years, but
I'm really lucky with my team around me, and we make
quite good scheduling and smart scheduling, so I
still have time to rest and get my mind off tennis.
And, you know, there is ‑‑ after Miami I had some
break, and after Wimbledon again. So for me,
personally, it's very important. And, yeah, I think
it's good to try to work out the best for you.
Q. What do you think is a good number of tournaments
for a top player to play?
ANA IVANOVIC: For a top player, I would say about
15, probably, yeah.