I thought the Dementieva fans would like to read this interview! Enjoy!
Her traditional beauty does fade the physical qualities of Anna Kournikova and Maria Sharapova. Her groundstrokes are harder than those of the Williams sisters. Still the 25 year old will never become the number one in the world as long as her serve inferiors to those who have a complete game.
During an exclusive conversation with the blondine from Moscow she did not avoid this subject.
The year 2000 meant the opening for Elena Dementieva. She was the first Russian woman to reach the semi-finals of the UsOpen and she earned a silver medal at the Olympic games of Sydney. Four years later she reached two Grand Slam Finals, in New York and in Paris. And she reached a career high-rank of number 4. Last year she became the first Russian woman who won more than 5 million dollars price money and she practically helped Russia to win the Fed Cup by winning her three matches. In this season she had some up and downs, but her highlightes were crushing Hingis in the WTA Tokyo final to get her first Tier 1 Title and her win in Los Angeles ment her sixth title in her career. But it's still not enough for a player of world class, but every player knows what the problem could be.
Could you tell something about your youth when you were having the tennis education?
Both of my parents played tennis, when I was seven years old, they brought us to an association that accepted us. Two other clubs thought that my movement was bad. At the Spartak Club Rauza Islanova became my trainer and she demanded discipline from everyone. I didn't found that always nice, but my fighting spirit excisted because of her I think. But still we got the impression that she found her children a lot more important, so that's why we called the help from Sergei Pashkov. Later on we invited Olga Morazowa to help. She and my mother signed for the rest of the tennis education and trainings. I've had a lot of offers to train in America, like most Russian girls do. But I didn't see the use of it to leave Moscow and leave my family and friends behind and that I would have all the facilities that I want.
But as long as you are prepared to work hard, you can learn how to play good tennis in Moscow as well. Now my mother is my only coach. I owe her and my father a lot. Because both of my parents had to save for a long time money to be able to buy my first racket made of wood and my mother had to make my first tennis skirt.
They didn't succeed to teach you a good serve did they?
(Laughing contagiously) Elena Dementieva:
I hear that often. You can believe me or not, but I'm one of the few persons who knows the most about the technique aspects of the service. Obviously I do get a lot of critical things from the journalists. My colleaugues are happy with my weak serve, but they give me advice with good meanings. On that area the biggest chances of improvement are there. But the habits of my serve are just there, because it is tough to get rid of them,because you are used to hit the serve like that. But I think it has to do with confidence and it's my head, like also Richard Krajicek told me. He first wanted to see if I was strong enough. And I was strong enough. He said the problem could be that I was thinking too much. He said ''Keep it simple''. He advised that I needed more consistency too. Well sometimes it goes well and sometimes not. But heey I am trying to stay positive, on a good day the service movement that I want will be there.
What is according to you the hurricane of Russian and Czech top players?
I'm not surprised by the Czech top players. They have got a good tennis tradition and a good scouting system. And they in the Czech Republic they have got a lot of courts and good coaches. I am surprised with my compatriots. Because we have, except in Moscow, bad facilities and there is not a real good education system, tenniswise. Every girl has got her own story. But one thing is clear, the parents are very important in every girls tennis career. They are pushing you really hard and the parents have got no problem to sacrifice a big part of their life like my own parents. It is tough for my father and my brother to see me and my mom for about eight months. I'm really honest to say now that I would doubt myself if I could do that myself to not see my children and husband for eight months.
What also is very important is the support we get from the government and the audience and ofcourse the fans. When I was eight years old, no one hardly knew what tennis was, mainly because it wasn't then an Olympic sport. When people saw me with a tennisbag they thought that a guitare was in there. Andrei Chesnokov and Natalia Zvereva played a big part for Russian tennis. I know them both well and I admire them. They have inspired our tennis generation.
Does religion play a part in your life? Are you interested in politics?
I don't want to tell too much about things that has got to do with religion. I only want to say that everyone has something or someone they believe in. Even if it is to help you in the difficult times. I hardly have any interest in political things. You hear and read a lot of stuff and at a moment you don't know anymore what to believe.
What are you doing when you don't have to play tennis, when you have time off?
I've got an apartment in the neighbourhood of my parents, although I see myself as an independent woman. But honestly I don't think you can see a lot of that from me. If I am in Moscow I often go to Jurmala ( the coast of Latvia) because my grandparents live there. And sometimes I go to my little house in the forest to be away from the big city. I garden there with my mother and I play chess with my brother. In the winter I love to ski or to do ice skating or snowboarding. Obviously like any other girl I love to shop. I'm quite a shopaholic. Anastasia Myskina and me, we can start a jeansshop ( laughing). In the past we used to borrow each others clothes but that time is over because my legs have become taller than hers.
Could you tell me something about the relationships between the Russian girls?
I used to train with Anna Kournikova, but I haven't seen her for some years. I'm really good friends with Myskina. We both have won together the Fed Cup. And both of us like to shop. I don't have got a lot with Sharapova. She makes loads of noise both on and off the court, but I have got a lot of respect for her fighting spirit. She has got the best focus of all the Russian players. With the other Russian players I have got a friendly relationship.
What do you still want to reach in tennis? And after your tennis career?
I will definetely go study, to prove everyone in Russia that tennisplayers have got also a smart brain. I will probably do something in sportmanagment, so that I can help the new talented people in the sport to make the right decisions. And of course I want to start a family later as well. I won't go to play tennis until I'm thirty for sure!
But before I go away from tennis I want to show that I'm a big champion and perhaps the best ever. WITH A BIG SERVE!
Soo that was the interview, my goodness what a typing
. I hope you liked the interview!