Jelena Dokic Tour Results: Interviews
Nasdaq-100 Open 2003
Crandon Park Tennis Center in Miami, Florida, USA (Key Biscayne)
25 March, 2002
K. Clijsters (3) / J. Dokic (9), 6-2, 6-0
2003 NASDAQ-100 Open: News: Player Interviews
K. CLIJSTERS/J. Dokic 6-2, 6-0
An interview with: JELENA DOKIC
THE MODERATOR: Questions.
Q. Not a good result tonight, but you won three straight
matches at this tournament, which you haven't done for
some time. So are you making progress?
JELENA DOKIC: Yeah, overall, I'm happy with this week. I
had a tough start to the year and it always takes me a
few matches to get going. So I was happy to get three in
a row. I haven't had that in six months. So in that
regards, I'm happy. I think I played my best tennis that
I played the last six months, so yeah...
Q. How is it working out?
JELENA DOKIC: It's good. We're working on some things. I
think it's getting a little bit better. Yeah, I think I
haven't made that transition yet to -- I don't think my
game is where I want it to be still. But we're working
Q. Are you aware of when these things started going
downhill, that you couldn't change anything, could you?
JELENA DOKIC: No, I hit the ball very well for the first
half an hour. She got everything back. So, I mean,
overall, the way that I played first half an hour, I
cannot be unhappy with myself. But she just played, you
know, she just got everything back and was better.
After that, was hard to keep up. But overall, if I look
at the first set, I think it was, you know, very close.
I had chances, I missed some. But I couldn't have hit
the ball any better than what I did.
Q. Jelena, she played really spectacular defense
tonight, retrieving balls in the corner. Did it
ultimately frustrate you, you made some bad errors off
of some of the retrievers she made?
JELENA DOKIC: Yeah, I think it's difficult to play
against someone that attacks and retrieves that many
balls at the same time. I think, eventually, it makes
you miss a little bit more because she gets so many back.
But, again, that's why I said I don't think I hit the
ball bad. I think I hit the ball fine. It was just a
matter of finishing the points and just not get
frustrated with her getting everything back.
Q. Could you rate your fitness level right now?
JELENA DOKIC: It's not there yet. I think it's pretty
good. I think it's better than it's ever been. But I
could still get stronger a little bit and just fitter,
Q. Where will you play next?
JELENA DOKIC: Sarasota.
Q. Are you having still home in the area of Tampa?
JELENA DOKIC: I do, yes.
Q. When you speak with your coach about progress, how do
you see it growing? What time should you pick, one
month, two months? Does he have an any opinion on that?
JELENA DOKIC: No, I think we're working on my game right
now. I just started working with him. I don't think I
have a peaking time or when I want things to happen. I
think things will happen when they happen, when things
start to improve in matches.
Overall, I think I made a big difference from the
beginning of the year to now. Hopefully, I can continue.
I think I still have a lot of things that can improve. I
don't expect to see anything huge still for another
three months at least.
Q. It seemed from the outside, maybe you see it
differently, after the sixth game in the first set, that
was a game that made a decision, enough to doubt --
almost all your balls were...
JELENA DOKIC: She played good. What can I say? I hit the
ball fine. That was no problem. Again, she got a lot of
balls back and she hit winners. She didn't make errors
at all, hardly. So it's difficult to play against
someone that does that.
You know, I'm disappointed with the result, but I think
overall, she just played solid. So I cannot say that I
beat myself too much.
Q. This sets up a rematch between Serena and Kim, the
Australian Open, which was a wonderful match. Kim came
so close to winning it. Do you see her as strong enough
to beat Serena Williams?
JELENA DOKIC: I think she's -- you know, she's gotten
very close. She has beaten Serena, so you always have to
give her a chance now. I think it would just be who's
better on the day.
Serena's played very well since the Australian Open, so
it just depends who plays better and how the conditions
Q. Do you see a confidence in Kim's eyes that tell you
anything about her mental strength right now?
JELENA DOKIC: Yeah, I think she's improved everything. I
think she's also -- she's raised the bar a little bit
also from the other players. I think fitness-wise also.
She's, you know, she's been playing very well and she's
very confident right now and you can see that.
Q. When did you last time play Meghann Shaughnessy?
JELENA DOKIC: Scottsdale.
Q. That's not that long ago.
JELENA DOKIC: No.
Q. Do you think that Venus might have been run down a
little, or they're catching up with her, with them?
JELENA DOKIC: No, I think Venus has gone down. I think
the fact that maybe she hasn't won a Grand Slam and that
Serena's dominating, I think we can see a little bit of
a lapse in her game. I don't think she's as solid as she
But, you know, she's still done I think well this year,
and I think, though, I don't think she's where she was,
I think, maybe a year ago.
Q. Do you watch a little bit of matches?
JELENA DOKIC: No, no.
Q. What do you think of the courts at Sarasota?
JELENA DOKIC: They were fine last year. I don't know, I
mean, clay's clay, I think.
So I think it was okay. I think it was -- I had no
problem. I was always on center court, so they made that
-- I think it was pretty good.
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2003 NASDAQ-100 Open: News: Player Interviews
K. CLIJSTERS/J. Dokic 6-2, 6-0
An interview with: KIM CLIJSTERS
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. I don't know what was better tonight: Your offense or
your defense. You made so many great retrievals in the
corner tonight. It seemed to really fluster her and
upset her. She made a lot of unforced errors.
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, I think, definitely, against
players like Jelena, you have to just try to make every
ball. When they're on, they can play unbelievable
tennis. If you take them a little bit off balance and
surprise them with a few shots, I think it's, you know,
you can surprise them and then they get maybe a little
bit more careful about, you know, not driving to the
balls, hitting more to the lines and stuff. They make
But I felt really good today. I was seeing the ball very
well and moving well.
Q. You split so many times, I thought you were on clay.
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, I grew up on clay. So I probably
sometimes think I'm playing on clay too.
Q. Is this your best stretch ever, the last few weeks?
Have you ever played as well for this long a time?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, I feel like I'm a lot more
consistent than what I was about a year ago, maybe two
years ago. I knew then that my best level was the same
as what it is now, but it just, you know, if I went a
little bit under my best level, when I was younger,
like, I dropped a whole lot and I could never sort of
stay good enough to, you know, win those matches.
Now I feel like I'm consistent throughout. Even if I'm
not playing my best tennis, I still feel that I'm
capable of playing well enough to beat a lot of girls.
I think that's the most important thing is, you know,
being, you know, focused and being comfortable by
Q. Any thought at all, any reaction to not having to
beat both Williamses to win the tournament?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Oh, no. No. I never... Well, I never,
also, I don't really look at draws, you know, far ahead,
you know. I know I have Serena now. But I never really,
in the beginning, when I won my first match, I didn't
even know who I was playing in the second round.
I just try to focus one match at a time. I tell my
coaches, "Well, you know, you don't have to tell me, you
know, which is the seed in my section" or whatever,
because I want to stay focused on each match. Yeah, so...
Q. You haven't conceded any more than two games in any
of the eight sets you've played so far. Do you think the
semi against Serena is going to be your first real test?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I hope I'll get more than two games
against her. No, but it's, you know, these are the
matches you really look forward to. These are the
matches, when you're younger and you're practicing and
you're working hard, these are the matches you dream of.
I mean, I do. I love playing these big matches. I'm sure
there will be a good atmosphere. So, yeah, I look
forward to those type of matches. You know, when there's
a lot of atmosphere from the crowd, I play better. Yeah,
I really enjoy those matches.
Q. Surely, you knew that with the top of the draw today,
with Serena playing the other match, that you were on
target to play her in the semifinals. How did you keep
your mind from -- off worrying about the semifinal and
focused on this match today?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Oh, I don't at all. I never -- like I
said, I mean, for me it's really easy not to think ahead
and just to focus on the match that I'm playing. You
know, even tomorrow, I have a day off tomorrow of
singles. I won't be thinking at all about the singles
match. I have doubles tomorrow. Yeah, so I'll just be
focusing about that.
But of course, you know, as soon as that match is over,
I have to do everything well, I have to focus on my next
match. That will be the one against Serena.
Q. If there's one thing mental that you can take back
from the Australian Open semifinal in the third set,
what would it be?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, I don't think I did anything wrong.
I don't think I -- you know, it's not that I made more
mistakes than, you know, when I went 5-1 up. I think she
just raised her level. That's what those top players
have. You know, that's why she's, you know, No. 1 in the
world. That's why she's won so many Grand Slams already,
is because when she's in trouble, she can raise her
level, you know, when she's unbeatable even.
Even, you know, I know, like, in the beginning of that
match, she didn't play well. She was making more
mistakes. I was forcing her to make the mistakes a lot
of times. You know, from 5-1 on, I don't think she
hardly made an unforced error.
Q. When you go on to playing her again, will it be
helpful to think about what happened in Melbourne or
block it out?
KIM CLIJSTERS: No, every match is different. We're
playing in different circumstances. Every match is
different. You know, I mean, for me, it's really easy, I
think, to block it all out. We're in a different
country, different stadium, so it's a completely
I think in tennis, you know, it doesn't matter. You can
beat a player, you know, one day. Then the next day, you
can lose to them. That's what's the fun part about this
sport. Otherwise, it would get really boring, I think,
if you would keep it the same player would win all the
So, it's, yeah, I hope it's gonna be a great match.
Q. Did any of your supporters watch the Williams match
today against Bartoli in order to give you some input on
how well she played?
KIM CLIJSTERS: No, it's -- I mean, I'm pretty, you know,
I've been on the tour a few years now. I've seen her
play a few matches, I've played her enough times. I
watched a lot of the matches that were on today, even
the men's I watched, just in the locker room. No, I
don't think my coach watched any of the match.
Q. Even if you don't look ahead to your next match, when
you go into a tournament like this, obviously, you're
aware that it's been an awful long time since anyone has
beaten both Williamses in the same tournament. So the
fact that one of them is now out of the way...
KIM CLIJSTERS: No, I really don't think that. Not at all.
Q. You don't even think about that?
KIM CLIJSTERS: No, not at all. I know for myself that a
lot of things can happen before you get there. Maybe,
you know, definitely for me, I mean, I think on the
other hand, everyone sort of expects Venus and Serena to
make it to the semis, to the finals. For me, I feel for
myself that I have to, you know, work hard. And, you
know, I mean, last week in Indian Wells, everyone was,
you know, already sure that I was going to make it to
the final. You know, I was playing, you know, bad tennis
in the beginning of the week. I really was struggling. I
know for myself how hard it can get. Even if you play
good one day, it can really change the next day.
Q. Do you think it would detract from your focus to even
think about the tournament as a whole? You don't do that
because you think it would distract you?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I don't know. I've never -- I mean, I've
never tried thinking. I don't know what it would -- if
it would distract me or not.
But, yeah, I wouldn't feel comfortable doing it. I don't
know, I would not.
Q. Thinking about the tournament as a whole?
KIM CLIJSTERS: No, no.
Q. This match seemed to turn in the sixth game of the
first set, six breakpoints. They just kept coming. What
do you remember about that game and how difficult it was
to finally break?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I think against Jelena, you know, you
have to be there for every point and you have to show
that you're fighting. Once she gets ahead, I think she
can really dominate and overpower you, I think, with her
type of tennis.
I definitely, you know, I served well today. I think
that was really important. I think that sixth game was,
you know, really important to go up 4-2 there. Then, you
know, win my own serve game after I broke her. I think
that sort of made her, you know, try to do more things
and change her game a little bit to get back into the
But as long as -- you have to really try against Jelena
to not let her get back into the match and not let her
play her best tennis.
Q. Your backhand down the line today, particularly
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, I think so. You definitely have to
use that shot, I think. Because, you know, the players,
I mean, it's a surprising shot from anyone. Even if
you're maybe a meter behind the line or a little bit
outside the court, you can go down the line and sort of
the opponents, it's an automatic thing, I think, when
they move automatically to the backhand. Down the line
court is open a lot. Yeah, it worked really well today.
Q. Any problems or concerns about any aspect of your
KIM CLIJSTERS: No. I was -- I think, overall, I was
pretty pleased with everything. Of course, everything
can still get better and I'll work for that. But, yeah...
Q. Does it seem astonishing to you that against a player
who hits the ball as hard as Jelena, she had only six
winning ground strokes against you tonight?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, I think the thing I did really well
is hit the ball deep. I sort of didn't give her a lot of
chances to come into the court and go for the winners.
You know, I really, like I said before, I felt like I
was moving really well and I wasn't, you know -- yeah,
moving really well and not letting her, you know, get
those easy shots.
Q. Do you have a feeling for a situation that the other
player is, did you follow how she feels at a particular
time, or are you concentrating on your game and you
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, you know, in every match, I've
mainly focused on my own tennis. You know, because
that's the most important thing. It all depends on how
you play and, you know, the way you feel.
I never really focus, you know, about the opponent, how
they're feeling, no. I just, you know, tactic-wise, you
know, I know what their strengths and weaknesses are.
But from the game from your opponent, but I never, yeah,
like I know for myself, I have to play good tennis to
win every match.
Q. Are you afraid you might get injured with your spread
KIM CLIJSTERS: I don't know. You know, a lot of people
have asked me that question. You know, I know every time
I come back into the locker room, the physios are really
worried. They almost packed their bags a few times,
ready to go on the court.
I don't know, it comes automatically. I don't know,
yeah, I don't know. I think it's because I grew up on
clay that I still do it on the hard court. But, yeah...
Q. Are you following what your sister does?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I do, yeah. Yeah.
Q. Is she capable of doing same things?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I don't know. It's tough. Because I think
it's always tougher, I think, for the younger player,
because she has to sort of follow into my footsteps and
a lot of people, you know, sort of expect her to do the
same things as I did. But she, you know, she's having
fun. She studies very well, too, so I think at the
moment, she's still -- she has to decide whether she
wants to keep going in tennis or whether she wants to
study and go to school.
Q. Do your parents have any say in that?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Oh, yeah, sure. Of course my parents,
they've always come with the point that they always
said, "We want you to be happy, whether it's playing
tennis or going to school or doing whatever, working,
whatever, we want you to be happy." My parents still say
that now, you know. They never put pressure on me. They
say, "From the moment you're sick of the tennis or sick
of the traveling and the flying, then don't do it. You
can find something else."
Q. Against Serena Williams, no player can afford to have
a weak second serve. The way you served your second
serve tonight, would it be strong enough to -- that you
would be okay against Serena?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, I think against any of those Top 10
players, you have to get a high first-serve percentage,
especially against Serena. You need a very high
first-serve percentage. You know, you have to hit your
first serve as well because she even attacks your first
But that's her type of game. She can make some errors on
that as well, you know, she tries sometimes to hit it so
hard that she hits some errors on those shots.
But, you know, I'll definitely have to hit my second
serve really well tomorrow, yeah.
Q. How good was your second serve tonight?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I don't even remember that. Well, I
think, like, my first serve was good, but I still felt I
had double-faults today and I'll definitely have to try
to keep those out tomorrow, yeah.
Q. Next day?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Oh.
Q. The weather's changed quite a bit. It's fresher, less
humid. It's cooler. Does that change what you can or
can't do on the court? Does it make you feel better?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, I think, you know, health-wise,
it's a lot better for the opponents. I've seen a few
girls come into the locker room with some problems and
some cramps and stuff. So, in that case, it's, you know,
a lot more enjoyable, I think, to play tennis in.
But the first few days, you know, when I was practicing,
coming back from Indian Wells, I was really struggling.
I could hardly breathe. So it was really hot. I think it
was even broke record in eight years or something, the
But, no, it's definitely a lot more enjoyable to play
it, I think, when it's not as hot.
Q. Does it change what you do?
KIM CLIJSTERS: No, no, it wouldn't really change a lot.
Maybe take a little bit more time between the points
because you need a little bit more time to recover. But
for the rest, I don't think it really changes anything
about the game, no.
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The interview article quoted from the 2003 Nasdaq-100 Open official website.