Jelena Dokic Tour Results: Interviews

U.S. Open 1999
Flushing Meadow, NY, USA
30 August, 1999
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UNITED STATES TENNIS ASSOCIATION

1999 U.S. OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP
Flushing Meadows, New York
August 30, 1999

A. SANCHEZ-VICARIO / J. Dokic 7-5, 6-1


An interview with: JELENA DOKIC


WTA: First question, please. 

Q. Unusual for you, a lot of unforced errors out there today?

JELENA DOKIC: Yeah. I think I didn't play too bad until 4-1. Just fell apart 
from there. Held my serve at 4-All, so I was still sort of in there. But my game 
definitely fell apart from 4-1. Too many unforced errors. I think I just gave 
the match away, just gave a lot away.

Q. Was it because of the conditions? Anything you can pinpoint?

JELENA DOKIC: Well, maybe a little bit. It was just different, you know, with 
the wind. I guess first time on center court here. You know, you have to cope 
with that. I was all right until 4-1. Like I said, then just fell apart. 

Q. Was there anything in particular that happened out there that caused it?

JELENA DOKIC: I think it's obvious, I just made so many errors. I mean, I had a 
game plan going into it, which I stuck by till 4-1. You know, it worked. I was 
in the point. I mixed it up. Dropshots, came in a few times. I didn't miss. I 
got up to 4-1 and didn't play too badly. But from there, just after she broke 
me, I mean, I think those two games against the wind were crucial there in the 
first set. Then after that, I just started making errors and gave a lot away. 

Q. In light of how you played at Wimbledon, how disappointed are you?

JELENA DOKIC: Very. But I haven't had a lot of matches lately. I think that's 
probably one thing, I haven't had matches, and I don't have that much confidence 
because I haven't played matches in so long after Wimbledon. I think the 
difference is that at Wimbledon, I came through qualifying, which is much 
tougher, but I had matches coming in. I had qualifying singles and doubles. It 
was a different story. It was a different player, I think, compared to 
Wimbledon. Definitely a different match to, let's say, a Hingis match. I just 
had everything right over there. I had a lot of practice matches, as well. I 
think coming into this tournament, it's been quite a bit of practice. I haven't 
played that much since Wimbledon.

Q. Why is it you haven't been playing matches?

JELENA DOKIC: I played the Canadian Open two weeks ago, but I had a week in 
between, because I'm limited. I didn't go to New Haven. I didn't play anything 
there. I've just been practicing since then. Also, you know, even before 
Canadian Open I didn't play anything. No matter how I did there, it's still not 
a lot of matches.

Q. Is that all because of the age eligibility?

JELENA DOKIC: Yeah. It limits you because you can't play everything. You've got 
to pick your tournaments. Even after this now, I've hardly got anything to play. 
I'm struggling to find tournaments where I can go to, what time I'm going to 
play them. I can't just go to any tournament.

Q. Is that right, you can only play another four tournaments until next April, 
is it?

JELENA DOKIC: Yes. Four or five.

Q. Is it having a negative effect on your development?

JELENA DOKIC: Well, I don't know if it's having a negative effect, but I think, 
you know, knowing you've got five tournaments for the next eight months, that's 
like one tournament in two months. That's a big difference compared to some of 
the players -- well, most of the players who can play as much as they want. 
Probably would have liked to have a few more tournaments, but that's the rules 
and I have to play by them.

Q. What will you do? Go back and play Juniors?

JELENA DOKIC: No, no, definitely not. I've got Tokyo after this, Aussie Open, of 
course. I'll see what I'll do, what I'll play.

Q. You said five minutes or so ago you need matches. 

JELENA DOKIC: Yeah, you do. I don't think by saying I need matches you can go 
back to Juniors. You're coming down another level. Even though I don't have a 
lot of tournaments to play, I won't go back and play Juniors. I think that's a 
total mistake to do that because it's, I guess, a level down from what I'm 
facing now. Hingis at Wimbledon, Sanchez here, playing Top-10 players and 
playing Juniors is a big difference. You can't expect to play Juniors and then 
come out and play a Top 10 player and do well. 

Q. Do you feel the momentum you had coming out of Wimbledon has sort of been 
lost because of this scheduling?

JELENA DOKIC: A little bit, I think. I'm not blaming this on the age eligibility 
rule. I just sort of feel like -- I didn't feel comfortable enough like I did at 
Wimbledon when I played a lot. I've had about four matches in the last three 
months, since Wimbledon, which is not a lot. I think really to get a feel, you 
need about two or three matches, especially coming after Wimbledon and having a 
break for a few weeks.

Q. What has it been like? What did that do for you, your run at Wimbledon? Did 
it change things in your life, or did they remain pretty much the same?

JELENA DOKIC: It's changed quite a bit. You know, tennis-wise, I think I've 
probably learned quite a bit, a bit more experience, and confidence as well. I 
played Fed Cup after that, had a match or two there. I did well there. I mean, I 
felt quite good at Fed Cup because it was just about a week after Wimbledon. But 
I think then after Fed Cup, I had a few weeks which I think makes a big 
difference. I haven't been able to come out and play matches before a Grand 
Slam. 

Q. Have you spoken to your father at all?

JELENA DOKIC: Yeah.

Q. What was his reaction?

JELENA DOKIC: Well, I think disappointing, of course. Not just with the fact 
that I lost, but just with the fact that after what happened, you know, at 4-1. 
I rushed. Just a total loss of concentration. I think after losing that first 
set, even though I lost that first set, I still sort of should have kept on 
trying to play well in the second set. I fell apart even more.

Q. Do you find yourself, because of the limited tournaments you've had, putting 
yourself -- putting a lot of pressure on yourself? You can't say, "There's 
always next week." 

JELENA DOKIC: Exactly. I've said this a lot of times, but when you're competing 
with players that can play 30 tournaments a year, nearly three times as much as 
I can, I've got to come on a tournament and do well because if I don't, I don't 
have another week to maybe fix it up. Especially with the way my tournaments are 
spread, I maybe have two tournaments in a row, and that's it. I can't play four 
or five tournaments. It probably does a little bit, but it doesn't bother me too 
much. It's probably a fact. I think for players who are limited, or will be 
limited in the future, I think it does make quite a difference. 

Q. Is that compounded by the fact that this is the US Open, being a Grand Slam 
and having to play this?

JELENA DOKIC: Yeah. Coming after Wimbledon, not playing many matches, coming 
into a Grand Slam, it makes a difference. When you come into a Grand Slam, you 
don't have a feel of playing matches again, get it going again, whereas when I 
had a first round at Wimbledon, I played a tournament before, I had like six, 
seven matches in qualifying. You've got your rhythm going, and you play every 
day. 

Q. Why not play more Challengers? Is the level not high enough?

JELENA DOKIC: Well, I can't, because they count as tournaments as well.

Q. Within age eligibility, you get to play a portion of Challenger, Satellites?

JELENA DOKIC: But it counts as a tournament. Doesn't matter what you play, 
satellites, WTA, Grand Slams, it counts. If I'm going to play a Challenger, I 
might as well play a WTA event.

Q. How were you able to focus so clearly at Wimbledon after what happened a 
couple weeks earlier? Was that difficult to block out?

JELENA DOKIC: No, I don't think it was. What came out of Wimbledon was pretty 
much blown up. A lot happened there, but it didn't bother me because I knew half 
those things weren't true anyway. I think it was just a story that people had 
something to write about at Wimbledon.

Q. You are quite a bit smaller than some of the other girls, good players. Have 
you grown much lately, a bit of a growth spurt?

JELENA DOKIC: I don't know (laughter). I guess I'm still growing for a few more 
years, hopefully. I think I still have a bit more development to do compared to 
some of the other players who are older, have pretty much developed.

Q. Are you working on your strength at all?

JELENA DOKIC: Not much, no, I haven't been doing that much. I don't know. I've 
just been working mainly on court right now. I might do something a bit later 
on.

Q. Is there a plan from this point as to what you're going to concentrate on?

JELENA DOKIC: Well, I have Tokyo, which is in about two weeks, play that, then 
see what happens, what I'm going to do for the rest of the year, if I'll play 
anything and what I'll play.

Q. Are you going to have another coach as well as your father or just stay with 
your dad?

JELENA DOKIC: I'll have a hitting partner, which is with me here, which works 
with me. I might take someone along, yeah. 

Q. Because Arantxa hits the ball so softly at times, with all the angles, is she 
the most frustrating type of player to lose to?

JELENA DOKIC: No. Actually, I don't think so. Until 4-1, that type of game 
suited me. I could have done whatever I wanted with the ball. You know, she 
doesn't hit that softly. Might look that way, but she hits good enough to beat 
you. You just have to get your head together and decide what you're going to do, 
if you're going to hit the ball, dropshot it a few times, came in, it worked. I 
think if you think out there what you're going to do, it's fine. After 4-1, I 
didn't do that, so. 


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