«Justine may/can be the future number one»
Carlos Rodriguez analyses her victory in Dubaï
Carlos Rodriguez, what’s your evaluation of her victory in Dubaï?
"It is a remarkable win. Actually Justine has understood very quickly what had happened to her in Antwerp and she has succeeded in turning the page. The conditions were far from being perfect: a change of climate and a delayed arrival, but she has reacted brilliantly. That’s the peculiarity of champions ..."
More important than the title, she has won and the opponent was her own true self?
"Exactly. Defeating players like Myskina, Capriati and Seles is not that easy. Few players can do it. Justine convinced herself that she was able to achieve important goals and that is not #4 by coincidence. The most important thing is that she became self-confident again and that she did it on her own; in the past I always had to help her a lot. The first two or three days were not that easy, I confess, but she started to work very soon after the arrival and became successful. The victory in Dubaî is the most important and meaningful."
How did you cope with the deception after her loss to Kim Clijsters in Antwerp?
"Immediately after the semifinal, I preferred to leave her alone so that she could work the matter into the ground and start criticizing herself. The loss to Kim was more than a lost tennis match, it was an example of the lack of expression of Justine on the court. Afterwards, when she was less excited, we started discussing on the match. You know, Justine is very realistic and very objective. I told her we would find a solution, because there was absolutely no reason why we should doubting, even when the loss was so cruel. She has to decide what page she wants to write in her career book. She answered the question, holding the racket in her hands ...."
How would you explain the fact that she was successful in Dubaï and not elsewhere?
"This is the question that PY asked me after her win. Why here and not in Antwerp? The answer is not that simple ...."
Do you think that she has a Kim-complex?
"Honestly, I don’t know. Instead of saying something stupid, I’d prefer to say nothing at all."
Many people think she is not that strong, mentally. What’s your opinion?
"I think most paople have a wrong image of Justine. She is not a weak person, mentally I mean. She’s too sensible, emotionally. For 7 years I’ve coached her and I can assure you that , mentally, she’s one the strongest players. She has built up her career, on her own, like a great ...."
What spirit can this win in Dubai give Justine for the rest of the season?
"I don't like to predict the future. The one thing that's sure is that this victory will bring her an emotional stability. She proved herself that she's deserves her place and from now on she can get to the highest level. What's so charming about Justine, is that she's always there on moments when you don't expect it. She just progresses on her own rythme."
Justine occupies the 4th place in the world firmly now. How high can she get?
"I don't want to put pressure on her, but sincerely, she can become number one and win Grand Slam tournaments. Without that believe I wouldn't be training her anymore..I believe in it that much. Her margin of progression is still enormous. She has worked on her legs and her abdominals, she puts her weight in her balls, but she can still get better physical and on her serve. She has the qualities it takes to get on top of the hierarchy. I will even tell you that if she would have only 50% of my conviction on her, she would have been there already."
thanks to Djuus for the translation.
article from La Dernière Heure - Les Sports