Jelena Dokic Tour Results: Interviews and Articles

Belgrade's Sports Journal (name unknown)
17 November, 2000 (16 November, 2000 ?)

"I came for YU passport"

Six years ago she went from Belgrade as 11 years old girl and
yesterday she came back as tennis star.

"I came back for yugoslavian passport," she says.

From 1994 she is Australian citizen, but now she wants to be 
what she is in her heart, Yugoslavian.
She landed on Surchin Airport (International Airport in Belgrade) 
with her mother Ljiljana. On Saturday they left Kuala Lumpur, 
where she played her last tournament in this season. On Monday 
in London she got visa for Yugoslavia, and now she is waiting 
last act of returning to Yugoslavia - getting a passport.

"I will stay in Belgrade at least a week, and probably even more,
until I finish all that is necessary" says No.26 player on WTA.

She won't be going to Australia before great tournaments in 
January - next time she will be seated in a plane to Florida, 
where Dokic family have a house.

When we spoke to her four months ago, she said that she is 
Yugoslavian in her heart. Now she will be on a paper too.

"I want to have sojourn in Belgrade so I can be here when I am 
playing in Europe. It is too far to travel all back to Australia. 
My second residence will be in US."

Six years out of fatherland - is it too long?

"I wanted to come even sooner, that was always my biggest wish.
Now that wish finally come true."

She was born in Serbian Krajina, now Croatia, in Osijek. But she 
does not understand why her WTA bio says she was born in Belgrade.

You left serbian part of Croatia in 1991?

"War was not started yet but we felt the pressure by Croats. 
Simply, it was the time to go. Then we came to Sombor (it is the 
city in north Serbia) and I kept playing tennis. It is interesting 
that we left Osijek on June 21, 1991, and Serbia to Australia on 
June 21, 1994. In Sombor it was nice. I advanced in tennis, but 
I lost my links with Sombor. I don't have time now, but someday 
I will go there."

You started this year as No.43 player and now you are No.26?

"Yes, but, if I did won some a few matches, I could be now in top 20, 
you know. It was likely the match with Monika in Rome and some others.
I learned something from that kind of matches, and it will be easier 
next year. In this moment my goal is to be in top 15. Until I am 
18 I can play only on 13 tournaments a year. So from April I could 
play how much I want. However, because I used most part of this 
quota, until April I will play only Australian Open and Key Biscayne."

She will use free time for training.

"I want to correct my service and to tactically go more often to net
so I can reduce points. This year I fixed my play but I want more."

Do you know anything about Yugoslav tennis?

"Well, with Dragana Zaric I was at Kuala Lumpur tournament, and 
with Sandra Nacuk I played in doubles at Zurich tournament. I don't 
speculate about representation yet because I can not play for 
Yugoslavia for three years. I met Darko Madjarovski and Janko 
Tipsarevic at French Open."

Jelena is attractive for world media since first day, but very 
often they speculated about her father, Damir.

"They inflate every bauble. I don't revolve the matter since the day
I realized that. I am very stable in court, and that don't bother me."

Two years in a row she play best at Wimbledon. First quarterfinals 
than semifinals...

"Next year final. I like grass as ground to play on. It suits me."

With Jelena Dokic Yugoslav Tennis will have brace with top tennis 
that we lost when Slobodan Zivojinovic left tennis and when Monika 
took US citizenship. We have again for whom to cheer at the world 

Monika achieved greatest success with YU passport and hopefully 
Jelena will too.

"I like Belgrade very much. I would not go anywhere from here," 
she said after first walk through city.
Special thanks to "Marko" for translating and posting this article to the mailing list.