Jennifer's interview! -
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 04:22 PM Thread Starter
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Jennifer's interview!

Q. Can you just say what it means for you to put this together today, under these conditions especially.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I'm just so happy and so relieved. You know, I was just -- I said after the match I was like, "Finally," you know? I looked up to my parents there, and I was just like, "Finally, it's about time one of these went my way for once."

So I felt like, you know, I really earned it. I had to earn it. I feel like I, you know, really played better out there and just deserved the win.

Q. On that matchpoint where you suddenly say "finally" and then you have to replay it, how difficult was that?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, I was just so happy that we replayed the point, that I didn't lose the point. When he said, "Do it over," I was like, "Okay."

But the ball was in, I guess, you know. And that was, like - I don't know - that was like a sign to me so...

Q. Was it difficult? You started celebrating, then of course you have to sort of regear again. Is that difficult to do, or at that point you're okay, you can do anything?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Actually, I don't know. It just kind of helped, because the it really got like the adrenaline going so much. If anything, it would have just made her think about it a little bit more, so...

Q. Last time you beat Serena in the quarterfinals here, you won the championship. Do you think this is a good sign for this?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, I don't want to say anything. But, yeah, I mean, history repeats itself sometimes (smiling).

No, I'm just gonna -- you know, the tournament is not over and I still have two matches to go and, more importantly, the next match. So, you know, really I'm just gonna try to forget about this as soon as possible and just, you know, go for the next one.

Q. Can you just talk about the rain delays and sort of what was going on psychologically with all the stops, how the conditions affected the match.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah, it was pretty tough out there, especially, you know, when it's just that kind of rain and you're kind of playing through it, but you look up and you can't really see too well because the rain's going in your eyes. And, I mean, it's the same for both players, that's the way you got to look at it.

And, you know, I guess the second rain delay, where it was the longer one, you know, I think that was kind of good in a way for me to just, you know, kind of go out, regroup, come back and just refocus on how I, you know, started the match and try to do it the same way and just go back to my game plan.

Q. Who were you talking to in the breaks?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Nobody, really. I just went to see Heinz for like a couple minutes, but that was it.

Q. Serena serving at 3-4, 30-40, it's the third set, very critical point. Looked like you decided, "If I get an inside-out opportunity on her second serve, I'm just gonna drive this ball." Is that the kind of decisiveness that makes a difference between...>

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: That won me the match?

Q. Yeah.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah. I think, yeah, basically that's right on. I was just like, you know, saying to myself, "All right," even the last game that I served, basically, "Just as much as you can, just try to go for it." It's tough in that, when you're getting so tight and everything, like, you know, it's like the tennis is not the highest quality.

But I took that opportunity and I knew that she was not serving as well and, you know, she was getting a little bit nervous. So, you know, finally it just came in the right spot and it just clicked, so...

Q. On the final point, I don't mean the replayed point, the actual final point of the match, you had to make a running forehand on your last shot. When you looked up, were you surprised to see she wasn't closing on the net but she was about eight feet behind the baseline?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No, not really, because it was just something that, I mean, I didn't feel that kind of presence the whole match anyway, so not really. I think we were both pretty stuck (laughing).

Q. You obviously take just your next opponent, first of all. But how surprised were you that you didn't have to play both Serena and then Venus?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, these days it's not really shocking, you know. It's not that surprising. There's a lot of girls that have been playing a lot more tennis than they have. And I guess if they're, you know -- anyone's gonna really have a chance to beat them, would be on the clay, which is, you know, little slower surface and, you know, the conditions.

I didn't see any of the match, obviously, because I was playing. But, you know, Myskina, she's a good player and she's consistent.

Q. You've lost so many close three-set matches at the Slams the last three years. But today you come into the third set again, probably entering your mind a little bit in the locker room, so how did you get yourself to play that level during the third set and not just freeze up?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, yeah, I tried not to listen to those voices, you know, that sometimes come in my head, you know, the negative ones.

Basically, I was just like -- kept telling myself, you know, "I think I'm playing better. I've been playing better. I'm fitter." And just, you know, the way I've been working, I was just like, you know, not gonna let this go down.

And, I don't know, I just kind of felt like the whole match was still like that, like if I would just, you know, keep holding on, especially on my serve, and just keep the rallies going, as soon as it was like a really long rally, I felt like I won most of them.

So it was just -- I don't know, it didn't seem that difficult, maybe because I just relied more on my fitness and my movement and, you know, and, you know, just believed in myself.

Q. You said before the match the other day that you had the game plan, you knew going in to execute it, which was basically to out-physical her, long rallies, outlast her. Were you so sure she wasn't just gonna zone and become the Serena that had won four Slams in a row? >

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, of course. I mean, I'm always, you know, waiting for that and waiting for her to do that. But, you know, I kind of would stop at the same time playing my game, you know, and just kind of sit back and just start watching her, you know? So this time, you know, if she starts doing that, fine. But I've just got to keep playing, you know, my tennis and my game.

Q. What do you think was your best tennis ever? When did you play it, and how many percent you play now?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: What do you mean, in the match?

Q. I mean just your best tennis ever, what would you think when you played that and how far away are you now?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, there's a lot of times where I've played my best tennis. I mean, I'm... you know, I can't go to like any specifics, but, you know, everything's like sometimes different, you know. It's like not always develop my game in a different way, or it grows in a certain way. It's not always the same.

But now, you know, I feel like it's right up there, the kind of tennis I'm playing.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about what Heinz has been able to do for your game and what, if any, adjustments he's made physically or mentally, tactically, to your game? >

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, you know, nothing really like technique-wise. Just a couple things maybe that I was doing. You know, my game is to be aggressive and basically, you know, I mean my forehand is, I think, my best shot. And just, you know, set points up like that. And also working more on the net and things like that. You know, basically just trying to enhance, you know, what I already have, I think.

And just a little bit strategy-wise, you know. I think it's just the whole idea of, you know, before a match, just sitting down and talking about what I'm gonna do and go out there with a plan. This helps my focus better, you know, so I'm not just going out there and just hitting tennis balls, you know. So I think he's helped in that way.

Q. (No microphone)?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah, I mean, just kind of like because when you work with someone for so long, like my dad, you know, you just kind of stop, you know, looking at those things as kind of important or, you know. Just so that's what I mean. When someone new kind of comes in the picture, you just open your ears a little bit more to what they're gonna say.

Q. Who gets the credit for getting that leg of yours back into a condition where you could play three sets against Serena today and come out a winner?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I would have to say my fitness trainer, my massage therapist. You want the name? Okay (smiling). T. R. Goodman.

Q. And your massage therapist is...

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: You want her name?

Q. Might help him (laughter).

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Theresa Ferguson.

Q. And in retrospect, how critical were they the last couple days, getting you ready?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, actually my fitness guy is not here. So what it is, is just talking to him on the phone, and beforehand all the stuff that I've done with him. So, actually, I also have to give credit to myself because I'm the one who did his stuff. He's not here to actually watch me do it, so I actually did it myself.

And also the trainers in the WTA. I mean, I just basically, you know, I just got tons of treatment on it and was just really careful with it and, you know, kind of fighting through it. So I guess it wasn't anything real major, but it could have been.

Q. She obviously had a string of wins, and you've now obviously decisively broken through that. Now that you've done that, how down did you get about that? How did you break through it?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, I mean, you know, of course it's frustrating, but I have to give myself credit for not, you know, just giving up. You know, just when we do what we do, I mean, it's not always going to be wins. You have to take it like a fighter, you know. You're gonna get punched, and, you know, you got to take the blows and just keep coming back.

And, you know, that's why it just feels like a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. But, you know, I'm not gonna like be too happy about it and...

That's my trainer, by the way. (Cell phone ringing.)

So, you know, I've got another match. You know, just kind of take it for what it is and be like, "Okay, it's just a match that I won," you know, and not make such a huge issue out of it.

Q. Was it living dangerously with some of those 70-mile second serves? Did you just have to put it in and just tell her, "Do what you will with them"?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah, I mean, it's kind of hard because, you know, you don't want to get into just going for it too much, start double-faulting, then you lose your confidence a little. You know, not every time is someone just gonna rip the return back. I mean, most of the time -- I mean, I don't think, you know, they still had spin on them. They weren't just like little duck serves, I think.

But, you know, kind of recognized a pattern, too. She was hitting the backhand all the time down the line basically to my backhand. So, you know, just little things like that. And the more the match went on, I think it just -- they got a little bit better, too, the second serves.

Q. The conditions. Of course you've played in all kinds of conditions all your life. Is this one of the worst, though, as far as the heaviness of balls? Balls were heavy, I assume?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah. I mean, it's -- yeah, it's tough. You know, the different tension with the racquets. But I wouldn't say it was like one of the worst conditions. I mean, it's still not as bad as like sometimes going on and off the court, you know, like Wimbledon, or being so hot, you know.

Q. Not as bad as Australia?


Q. Because it was the same, we saw that they brought you two racquets during the match. How important was that detail? You had to change tension or how does it work?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, sometimes it's mental, you know. Just doesn't even make a difference, actually, in the way you're hitting a ball, but just to know that, you know, something like to blame, you know, I guess you have an excuse on the racquets. Those weren't even the right ones, so...

You know, it's just good having it out there. And sometimes some players, you know, get more neurotic about those kinds of things. So, you know, that's fine. Whatever helps, right?

Q. Serena, a few moments ago, complimented you. She said you had a very good game plan or strategy for today's match. What was your strategy? Did it differ much from the last time you played each other?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No, not really. You know, I still feel like just the longer the points went, I felt like that was to my advantage. Yeah, I mean, I wanted to move her around, not give her a rhythm, but not open up the court too much because, I mean, she likes hitting those angles. She's pretty good at it, especially on the backhand.

You know, when in doubt, you know, just try to hit hard up the middle, too, because, you know, even for any player it's difficult, especially I don't know the way the courts were, there were just a little bad bounces there. So, you know, just kind of take away her angle a little bit. Even on the serve, you know, just try to hit more into the body.

But, you know, the forehand, you know, I think comes more mistakes than the other side. So, you know, when you want to just get back into the point maybe just a little bit more, just play to the backhand.

Q. Having finally gotten through against a player of Serena's caliber at a tournament like this, what's the overriding emotion for you?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: It's just satisfaction. I mean, it's just really, you know, knowing that if you do work hard and you do really, you know, want something bad enough, and you do all the right things, that eventually they will come. And I guess this proves it to me, because it came, so...

I'm just -- I don't know, I'm just really happy.

Q. Obviously, it was a load off your shoulders. I'm wondering if relief is what you feel more than anything else?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Relief is part of it, but it's more just -- it's just satisfaction.

Q. The first time I approach you, you look like Princess Caroline of Monaco. What do you think?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, thank you (laughter). That's a compliment. I've never heard that before. Well, I have, not in a press conference, but (laughter)...

Thank you.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 04:24 PM
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JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, these days it's not really shocking, you know. It's not that surprising. There's a lot of girls that have been playing a lot more tennis than they have. And I guess if they're, you know -- anyone's gonna really have a chance to beat them, would be on the clay, which is, you know, little slower surface and, you know, the conditions.

I didn't see any of the match, obviously, because I was playing. But, you know, Myskina, she's a good player and she's consistent.
Jenn hit it on the Head


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 04:29 PM
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Jen should also give a bit more credit to herself for turning her attitude around in the last couple of months and playing more aggressively. She looked the best bet going into the quarters and seems to be taking the game to her opponents rather than just trying not to lose, which is where she was before.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 05:04 PM
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 05:17 PM
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Absolutely delighted she won, my two faves Elena and Jen in the semi. Hope they can both win their next matches!!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 05:24 PM
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I mean, these days it's not really shocking, you know. It's not that surprising. There's a lot of girls that have been playing a lot more tennis than they have. And I guess if they're, you know -- anyone's gonna really have a chance to beat them, would be on the clay, which is, you know, little slower surface and, you know, the conditions.

Exactly. I am suprised Jen has started to put sentences together. Good win for her, but Serena better get her butt together and out of Hollywood.

Originally Posted by AcesHigh
I'll say this in public once. I miss serena so much. Fed is my favorite player but no one does it like her.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 06:35 PM
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it was a good match...well played jennifer...even though she was injured she still won
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 06:48 PM
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nice interview - I can just imagine the smile on the Princess' face!

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 2004, 07:04 PM
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Capriati the Goddess

Jennifer Capriati Ana Ivanovic

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