Intresting interview with Alexandra Stevenson
Alexandra Stevenson, Wimbledon 2000
Q. Why do you feel the rookie year was so tough?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, there is a lot of hazing going on. It was just a tough year. I don't think any young girl should go through that.
Q. What do you mean by "hazing"?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Just things happened that weren't very nice, and they shouldn't happen. Hopefully next year I won't be a rookie, so they shouldn't happen.
Q. Can you be specific?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Just certain situations with girls.
Q. You mentioned this a few times before. I think the reason why we keep asking about it is because, as you said, it shouldn't happen.
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Yeah, it shouldn't happen.
Q. I assume you're talking about it because you want to bring it out into the open. Is that something you want to do?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, I got called a piece of shit black girl, I guess you could say that, on the court a lot of times.
Q. By your opponent?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Yes, in French, so that wasn't very nice. Other things happened. A girl hit my mom with a hat. I think if that happened in your job place, you'd get in trouble. These girls didn't get in trouble here.
Q. That happened during this tournament?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: No, not here.
Q. Did you complain to the WTA Tour?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Yes, I told them. But they can't really do anything about it because the girls are pretty wild. It's hard to control people. It's not a perfect situation out here. You wish it was, but it's not.
Q. The spectators hit your mother?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: No, it wasn't a spectator.
Q. One of your colleagues?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, I wouldn't call her a colleague - I guess a colleague.
Q. Someone on the tour?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Yes.
Q. You don't want to name the person?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Sure. Sidot and Cocheteux. Cocheteux called me the names and Sidot hit my mom.
Q. Can you tell us which tournament?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Strasbourg.
Q. In both cases?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, yeah. I played Cocheteux. Sidot did it the next day. In the French, Cocheteux came up and hit me -- kind of bumped me in the locker room. Kind of brought back memories from Venus and Spirlea. But Cocheteux is a little shorter than me. She kind of just ran the other way. I had a match so I didn't do anything.
Q. Do you think these things are going to stop because your rookie year is over?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, they better, because I'm getting tougher now.
Q. Do these things happen to everybody or just you?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Not that I know of.
Q. So why do you think they happen to you?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: I don't know. I guess you'll have to ask the other people.
Q. Do you think these are the sort of potentially racist incidents?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: I think I kind of made a big splash last year. I don't think a lot of girls appreciated it. They have to grow up and have bigger minds, not be so petty. I'm moving on. Hopefully it will be okay.
Q. What do you do when a player like that says something to you like that on the court?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: You beat them. I was down 6-1, 3-0, and I came back and won 7-6, 6-1.
Q. Did it feel good?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Yeah, it felt great. You don't get mad; you get even.
Q. Do you think they're jealous of you?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Sure, I guess. I mean, I don't know why. I think I'm pretty nice. I don't harm anyone. I don't really talk to them because they don't talk to me. I just mind my own business. I guess because I've gotten a lot of attention and I have a personality, they don't like it. But that's too bad. That's me.
Q. On the other side of the coin, aside from Venus and Serena, who you've known for years, have any of the players come up and gone out of their way being supportive or said, "Hang in there"?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Uh-huh, a lot of them.
Q. Give examples.
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Monica Seles is very nice to me. She kind of has come up to me and told me about how when she was younger, kind of like. She's very nice to me. Mary Joe Fernandez, she really doesn't play that much anymore after she got married, she's nice. Mary Pierce is nice to me. A lot of the girls are nice. But the majority of the girls, I don't know how to explain it, I guess they just don't like me. I guess they see me as a threat. They all want to go out and beat me. The girl I played today played very good tennis. Brian Gottfried went out and watched her. I don't think he saw her play that well. She kind of played the best match of her life, I think. She served awesome. She outserved me. That's pretty hard to do on grass. But she served really well. She came out and wanted to beat me, and she won. She deserved the win. There could have been a couple calls another way, but she played well. I give credit to her.
Q. What were the circumstances of Sidot hitting your mother?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, I wasn't there, but she hit my mom. I mean, my mom told me. I don't know why they do it. I guess they take it out on my mom because they're scared of me or something because I'm taller than them or something.
Q. Did your mom tell you anything about it, what happened before she was hit?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: It was just a big mix-up on the court. After I beat Cocheteux, obviously they don't like me, they kind of ganged up on me, the French. She just did it.
Q. She hit her with a hat?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: She pulled her hat down.
Q. Pulled your mom's hat down?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Yeah. It wasn't like a punch, but it was stupid.
Q. There's been an incident today with Mr. Dokic. Can you see any harm done by parental influence on players?
ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: First of all, I played doubles with Jelena in Hilton Head. I kind of made amends with her. We were going to play. She wasn't very nice to me before. We played, and her dad showed up drunk. My mom said, "You're not playing with her again." I don't think he counts as most of the parental influence because he needs help. That's what I think.
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