Jelena Dokic Tour Results: Interviews and Articles
Sarasota Open 2002
Meadows Country Club in Sarasota, Florida, USA
01 April, 2002
J. Dokic / C. Martinez, 6-2, 7-5
HeraldTribune.com: Sarasota: Story
TENNIS / Sarasota Open
Dokic captures straight-sets win over Martinez
By MIC HUBER
SARASOTA -- Damir Dokic moved up to the top row of the west stands, pulled out a
cigar and gave it a light.
His talented daughter had just broken Conchita Martinez to get to 5-5 in the
second set and moments later she would complete a run of four straight games to
wrap up a 6-2, 7-5 win over the former Wimbledon champion in an unfortunate
first-round match in the $140,000 Sarasota Open being played at The Meadows
"I always smoke. I am very nervous," Damir Dokic said. But at 5-5, with Jelena
Dokic taking control of the match, this smoke served as a victory cigar.
Damir Dokic had seen his 18-year-old daughter survive a lapse in the middle of
the second set to rip off the final four games of the match to dispatch a tennis
legend and move into the second round of this first-year tournament.
"For my first match here, I was really happy the way I played," said Dokic, who
is ranked No. 9 in the world and is the top-seeded player here this week.
She had to play well because she drew one of the toughest players on clay and a
player who has been ranked as high as No. 2 in the world.
Someone had to go and Dokic, who has been battling injuries this year, bore down
at the critical time of the match to make sure it was Martinez.
"It was tougher, I think, than it looked," Dokic said about the 1-hour,
11-minute match. "It is always tough to play her, especially on clay. She plays
so well on clay. If I didn't play as well, it would have been a little tougher."
Dokic's win brought an end to the first day of singles play and set up today's
matches, which include appearances by Sarasota's Mary Pierce, second-seeded
Meghann Shaughnessy and fourth-seeded Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario.
Play begins at 11 a.m. and will continue throughout the afternoon. Highlighting
the afternoon session is a match between Pierce, who is beginning a comeback
from a series of injuries, and Ai Sugiyama at 1 p.m. That match will be followed
by a match between Jennifer Hopkins and Shaughnessy, now ranked No. 13 in the
The night session is topped by a match between third-seeded Arantxa
Sanchez-Vicario, currently ranked No. 14 in the world, and Janette Husarova.
Dokic took care of business fairly quickly, despite a loss of focus in the
second set that allowed Martinez to take a 5-3 lead. But Dokic bore down to hold
serve to stay in the set then broke Martinez's serve to even the set at 5-5.
"I had a little bit of a lapse of concentration but she played a lot better in
the second set," Dokic said. "She was a little more aggressive and went for
shots she didn't go for in the first set.
"I was really calm, which helps because I knew she lifted her game up a little
bit and I just had to get back on track."
A series of leg injuries have prevented Dokic from getting in many matches in
the last couple of months, but she found enough toughness Monday to gain control
and let her father breathe a little easier.
"The focus was to hold serve at 3-5," she said. "If can hold serve I knew, if I
can stay focused at 4-5, I could break. And, if I could break, I would be back
in it. I held serve pretty easy and that helped I played really good last four
or five games."
While Dokic has broken into the top 10, it is still seldom that she is a
tournament's No. 1 seed. With the top seed goes a little bit of extra pressure,
but she appeared calm in her match against a player she has played doubles with
in the past.
Dokic, who reached the fourth round at both Wimbledon and the U.S. Open this
past year and the semifinals at Wimbledon in 2000, beat Martinez for the second
straight time after losing to her the first five times they played.
It didn't take long for Patty Schnyder to wrap up the first win in the main
draw. The 23-year-old from Switzerland blitzed American Lilia Osterloh in just
48 minutes. Schnyder led 6-0, 5-0 before wrapping up a 6-0, 6-1 win.
Schnyder, ranked as high as No. 8 in the world in 1999, has won seven
The tournament also got an early start with a pair of doubles matches Monday and
local favorite Nicole Arendt had to work hard to get past the first round.
Arendt and Liezel Huber, who reached the semifinals last week at the Nasdaq-100
in Key Biscayne, were extended by Alexandra Fusai and Caoline Vis before taking
a 6-2, 4-6, 6-3 win.
Arendt, a former University of Florida player, played Word TeamTennis for teams
in Bradenton and Sarasota in the mid-1990s.
Four players advanced to the main draw by winning final-round qualifying matches
Monday and two of the players who lost reached the main draw as "Lucky Losers,"
filling spots vacated by a pair of players who pulled out late because of
Among the qualifying winners was Anna Smashnova, who found herself having to
qualify for "the first time in about three years" because of the strength of the
Marissa Irvin and Virginie Razzano lost their qualifying matches but got in
because of late withdrawals by Iroda Tulyagnova and Anne Kremer.
Serving the Herald-Tribune newspaper and SNN Channel 6
The interview article quoted from the Sarasota HeraldTribune.com - http://www.heraldtribune.com/sarasota/