September 23, 2004
© WTA Tour
Getting to Know...
Rising American star Angela Haynes made waves at her home country's Grand Slam two weeks ago, reaching the third round before falling to No.16 seed Francesca Schiavone. Haynes, given a wildcard into the US Open, entered the tournament as the world No.185. She had only won one WTA Tour singles match upon entering the US Open, defeating Rita Grande at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford in 2003.
Haynes scored the biggest win of her career en route to the third round, upsetting No.22 seed Magdalena Maleeva. She recently turned 20-years-old and in celebration, currently holds her career-high ranking of No.127.
WTATour.com caught up with Angela at the US Open.
Many people are aware that you are from Compton, but tell us a little more. Where were you born, live now?
I was born in Bellflower, California which is 20 minutes from downtown Los Angeles. I spent seven years there, then moved to Compton, living there for only two years. My family moved to Arizona and I was there from ages 9-13 and then moved back to Compton for about five years. And now I live in a little town called Victorville, in Riverside County, California.
How did you get started in tennis?
My dad got me started playing the game. I began playing with tennis balls when I was three years old and from there, I remember getting my first racquet from Toys 'R Us, with pretty rainbow colored strings.
When did you realize you wanted to be a professional tennis player and that you had the skills to be one of the best in the world?
I started playing junior tournaments when I was seven years old and was ranked No.1 in Southern California's Under 10 division when I was eight. But it wasn't until I was 13 that I realized I wanted to be a professional tennis player.
Besides playing tennis, what else did you like to do as a child? Did you play other sports?
I liked just hanging out and talking with my friends. I also liked to ride my bike, but no, I wasn't into any other sports besides tennis.
Who were your tennis idols when you were growing up?
I loved Monica Seles (especially loved her grunting), Steffi Graf and Jennifer Capriati (loved the way she hit the ball).
What is your strongest memory of your tennis career to date?
I was playing a junior tournament, won my match and was inquiring about my next match. I was told over the phone that I was the last match to go on the following day. But when I got to the courts the next day, I was actually the first match to go on, so I missed my match! Ever since, I always double check the schedule and am very wary of what people tell me.
What is one of your most memorable moments on the tennis court so far?
I was playing a doubles match on clay courts and was two points from losing the match. I wasn't too concerned about the match or with losing, but I hit a drop shot and one of my opponents, Bea Bielik, raced for the ball but ran into the netpost, hit her head and couldn't finish the match.
What type of off court training do you do?
I do sprints about three times a week and push-ups and sit-ups every day. I prefer to work out with a friend or while listening to music. I get bored if I'm on my own!
How do you relax away from the tennis courts? What do you like to do in your free time?
I love to play with my three little Yorkies at home, Bully, Sissy and Nibbles. I also like to read drama and fiction novels, along with listening to music.
What do you think you would do if you weren't playing tennis?
I think I would have been a scientist, probably studying biology or astronomy.
ANGELA HAYNES FACT FILE
Born: September 27, 1984 in Bellflower, CA
Lives: Victorville, CA, USA
Plays: Left-handed (two-handed backhand)
Weight: 145 lbs.
Started playing tennis: Age 3, tournaments at age 7
Playing style: Baseline, serve and volley
Biggest weapon: Two-handed backhand
WTA Rankings: No.127 in singles; No.229 in doubles
Career highlights: Recorded career-best Tour and Grand Slam result at this year's US Open, upsetting No.22 seed Magdalena Maleeva en route to 3r; currently holding career-high ranking of No.127