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post #1 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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(Venus fans)An interview

I know that many of you do not post over at the Williams tennis Association, so I'd like to share this thanks to the posters Justinator and Josh



INTERVIEW. Voor toptennisster Venus Williams is het leven meer dan sport alleen
TENNIS
Jos Segaert
13/02/2002

© ap
Alle speelsters zeggen het: Venus Williams is de beste tennisspeelster te wereld. Straks maakt de Amerikaanse ook daadwerkelijk kans om nummer één te worden. Een plaats waar ze ooit Kim Clijsters of Justine Henin ziet staan. ,,Jullie boffen maar: zo'n klein land en twee absolute topspeelsters.'' Een exclusief interview met de strafste van de zusjes Williams, deze week aan de slag in Antwerpen. En net als de meeste sportsterren weet ze dat zelfrelativering goed scoort: ,,Tennis is voorlopig mijn broodwinning''.


Sommigen noemen Venus koel en afstandelijk en zo komt ze op het eerste gezicht ook over. Maar ze laat die onverschilligheid ook makkelijk varen. Achter de hautaine look gaat een spirituele vrouw schuil, die zichzelf kan relativeren en af en toe gevat uit de hoek komt.



Wat heeft er u toe toch aangezet deel te nemen aan het tornooi van Antwerpen, dat aanvankelijk niet op uw programma stond? Venus Williams: ,,Ik was sowieso van plan te komen om met Serena het dubbelspel te spelen. Toen zij uitviel door een blessure, heb ik voor het enkel gekozen. Ik hoorde dat Antwerpen een mooie stad is en dat ze bekend is om haar gastronomie. Ik hou van cultuur. Daarnet ben ik naar het museum geweest, ik heb een wafel gegeten met slagroom en kreek (krieken, nvdr) en straks ga ik wat kerken bezoeken.''


Ik zie dat u ook bent gaan shoppen. Een andere hobby van u? ,,Klopt. Mijn moeder en ik konden niet aan de verlokking weerstaan van al die prachtige kledingzaken. Ik woon in Florida waar het een heel jaar door warm is en hier is het behoorlijk koud. Ik heb vandaag enkele lange winterjassen gekocht. Ik ben dol op lange jassen.''


De kans dat u tegen het einde van de week nummer één bent, is reëel. Hoe belangrijk is die erkenning voor u? ,,Als je de beste bent, is het logisch dat je bovenaan de lijst staat. De nummer één in de wereld zijn is een betrachting, maar geen doel op zich. Waar ik van wakker lig, zijn Grand Slams. Ik won vorig jaar Wimbledon en de US Open. Die overwinningen hebben de manier waarop ik met mijn tennis omga, veranderd. Het is vooral een mentale kwestie. Zelfvertrouwen uitstralen en beseffen dat je het kunt, daar komt het op aan. En de hele kunst is dat op het cruciale moment ook te kunnen waarmaken. Dat is de reden waarom het soms ook verkeerd afloopt.''


Tennis is belangrijk, maar weinig speelsters weten hun sport in zo'n juist perspectief te zetten als u. ,,Sport is maar een onderdeel van mijn leven. Ik ben een duizendpoot, ik interesseer me voor honderdeneen dingen en die wil ik allemaal uitproberen. Tennis is voorlopig een broodwinning, maar ik hoop het ook te maken in de designwereld, ik ben leergierig, kunst en cultuur boeien me -- daarom hou ik van Antwerpen -- en talen zijn mijn dada, hoewel: mon français n'est pas tres bon !'' (schatert het uit).


,,De leegte zonder God''

In welke mate hebben de gebeurtenissen van 11 september u beroerd? ,,Ik ben Amerikaanse en zoals alle Amerikanen was ik geschokt. Ik kan nog altijd niet begrijpen waarom mensen tot dergelijke waanzin in staat zijn. De gevolgen zinderen nog na over de hele wereld en persoonlijk heb je af te rekenen met een reeks ongemakken: ik vlieg niet meer, tenzij het absoluut nodig is. Elf september heeft me ook de betrekkelijkheid van een aantal dingen doen inzien. Soms zeg ik: tennissen is leuk, maar er zijn belangrijker dingen in het leven. Ik bid elke dag voor de slachtoffers van de ramp.''


Wat zijn voor u de levenswaarden waaraan u zich optrekt? ,,In de eerste plaats mijn geloof in God. Ik geloof in zijn bestaan, in zijn goedheid. Loop doorheen het Louvre, bewonder al die schilderijen. Michelangelo, de Vlaamse Primitieven, de klassieke meesters: praktisch allemaal schilderen ze bijbelse taferelen. Het zegt veel over het geloof. In het verleden draaide alles om God. Die waarden zijn we nu aan het verliezen. Dat is bijzonder jammer. Mensen die leven zonder God, leven in een leegte. Ik ben ervan overtuigd dat veel menselijk leed daaruit voortkomt.''


Waaraan hecht u nog belang? ,,Aan mijn familie, mijn vier zussen, en natuurlijk mijn ouders. Zonder de steun van mijn vader en moeder was ik nooit tennisster geworden en kon ik dit leven niet leiden. Ze hebben me laten opgroeien tot de meid die ik ben, met mijn gaven en mijn gebreken. Zij hebben me dingen aangereikt, mijn enige verdienste is dat ik ze met beide handen heb gegrepen.''


,,Ik word een oude vrouw''

Tennis heeft u ook schatrijk gemaakt. ,,Niet alleen financieel maar ook innerlijk, menselijk. Tornooien winnen en veel geld verdienen, daar is niets mis mee, maar het moet allemaal leuk blijven. Om goed te spelen moet ik me goed in mijn vel voelen, de mensen rondom mij hebben die ik nodig heb. Dan komt de rest vanzelf.''


Uw zus heeft dezelfde ambitie als u. Zorgt dat niet voor wrijvingen? ,,We spelen allebei goed tennis en we willen allebei naar de top. Er zullen dagen zijn dat we tegen elkaar uitkomen en dan kan er slechts een winnen. Wie dan de beste is, mag zich gelukkig prijzen. Dat is inherent aan het spel. Maar dat wijzigt niets aan onze relatie. Serena is één van mijn vier zussen en we komen goed overeen.''


Kim en Justine worden hier op handen gedragen. Verrast u dat? ,,Zeker niet. Jullie boffen maar. Zo'n klein land en twee topspeelsters. Justine is een tenniskunstenaar. Wat die met de bal kan, is fenomenaal. En Kim is meer een speelster die efficiënt vanuit de baseline acteert. Beiden hebben het potentieel om ooit de nummer één te worden. Ze zijn ook zo jong, 18 en 19.''


Zei een grootmoeder van 21... (lachend) ,,Ja, ik word een oude vrouw, mijn knoken kraken, ik draag een brilletje en ik heb artrose!''.



Translation


For top tennisplayer Venus Williams life is more than just sport

All tennis players agree : Venus Williams is the best player in the world. Soon the American has the chance of really becoming number 1. A ranking that according to her will once be occupied by Kim and Justine. "You are so lucky, such a small country and two fantastic players." An exclusive interview with the strongest of the Williams sisters, this week in Antwerp. And just like most sport stars she knows that self relativity scores well : "At the moment tennis is just my carreer."

Some say Venus is cool and distant and that's also how she comes over at first. But that indifference easily disappears. Behind the arrogant look hides a spiritual woman, who can put herself into perspective and is also very quick-witted.

What made you play this tournament cause it wasn't on your schedule at first?
V : I was coming anyway cause I was gonna play doubles with Serena. When she had to withdraw due to injury, I chose to play singles. I had heard that Antwerp is a beautiful city, well known for its gastronomy. I love culture. I just went to the museum; I ate a waffle with whipped cream and cherries and later today I will visit some churches.

I see you went shopping too. That's another hobby of yours?
V : Indeed. My mom and I couldn't resist to all the beautiful clothing shops. I live in Florida where it's warm all year round but here it's pretty cold. I bought some long winter coats today. I'm crazy about long coats.

There's a really big chance that you'll be number 1 at the end of the week. How important is that recognition for you?
V : When you're the best it's logical to be at the top of the rankings. Being the number 1 player is certainly something I want, but not so much an objective. What keeps me awake are the slams. I won Wimbledon and the USOpen last year. Those victories have changed my vision on tennis. It's all a mental thing. Being confident and believing in yourself, that's what it's all about. But of course you have to realise this on the crucial moments. That's the reason why sometimes it turns out wrong.

Tennis is important but few players can place their sport in perspective like you do.
V : Sport is only a part of my life. I'm a do-it-all, I'm interested in hundreds of different things and I wanna try it all. Tennis is my carreer at the moment, but I also wanna make it in the world of design, I'm very eager to learn, I like arts and culture -- That's why I like Antwerp -- and languages are my fads and fancies, although : mon français n'est pas très bon! (laughs)

,,The emptiness without God''

How did the events of September 11 touch you?
V : I'm an American and just like all Americans I was in shock. I still can't understand how people can be capable of such madness. The consequences are still felt all over the world and personally I have to deal with certain discomforts : I don't fly anymore unless it's really necessary. September 11 also made me see a lot of things in perspective. Sometimes I tell myself : tennis is nice, but there are much more important things in life. I pray every day for the victims of the attacks.

What are the values in life that give you strength to continue?
V : First of all my belief in God. I believe in his existence, in his goodness. Walk through the Louvre, admire all the paintings. Michelangelo, the Flemish primitives, the classical masters : almost all paint biblical themes. In the past everything evolved around God. We are losing those values now. That's very sad. People who live without God, live in emptiness. I'm convinced that's the reason for so many human suffering.

What else is important to you?
V : My family, my four sisters and of course my parents. Without the support of my fater and mother I would never have been a tennis player and I couldn't live this life. They raised me into the woman I am today, with all my talents and faults. They gave me the opportunity to reach out for certain things, my only merit is that I took them with both hands.

,,I'm growing old''

Tennis also made you rich.
V : Not only financially but also mentally, humanly. Winning tournaments and make good money, nothing's wrong with that, but it has to remain pleasant. If I wanna play well, I have to feel good, and having the people who I need around me. The rest follows.

You sister shares your ambition. Doesn't that result in frictions?
V : We both play good tennis and we both wanna reach the top. There will be days we'll have to face eachother and then there can only be one winner. Whoever play best, will be lucky. That's what the game is all about. But that doesn't change our relationship. Serena is one of my four sisters and we get along fine.

Kim and Justine are being treated like heros. Does that surprise you?
V : Certainly not. You're very lucky. Such a small country with two top players. Justine is a tennis artist. What she can do with the ball is phenomenal. And Kim is more than just a player dictating play from the baseline. Both have the potential to become number 1 one day. They are both young too, 18 and 19.

Said a grandma of 21...
V : (smiles) Yes, I'm growing old, my bones are cracking, I'm wearing glasses and I have artrosis!

"I love the game, I love the thrill, I love the "Go Venus`."
"It takes a lot of work to get to this level, so while I can play I'm going to play."

Venus Ebone Starr Williams
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post #2 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 03:01 AM
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Quote:
Tennis also made you rich.
V : Not only financially but also mentally, humanly. Winning tournaments and make good money, nothing's wrong with that, but it has to remain pleasant. If I wanna play well, I have to feel good, and having the people who I need around me. The rest follows.
Lovely!

VENUS
Serena
Lindsay Jelena Maria

Mary : Monica : Svetlana : Sania : Jennifer : Amelie
Roddick : Grosjean : David : Djokovic
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post #3 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 03:20 AM
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Quote:
Quote from the author of the above article:
All tennis players agree : Venus Williams is the best player in the world.
That's what I've been trying to say all along.
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post #4 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 12:30 PM
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This is a wonderful interview.
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post #5 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 12:44 PM
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Thanks a lot, Infiniti. What a nice interview!
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post #6 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 01:21 PM
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I agree.She seems such a nice and lovely girl,not only as a tennis player,but as a simple woman.I admire her very much.She absolutely deserves all the good that she has in life.
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post #7 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 01:33 PM
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Good interview.
Bright Red digs out the truth once again.

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post #8 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 03:19 PM
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For me it is no problem with the wordings but those who live
in America and other countries, how you think they digest all
what Venus has said here.
Kun je volgende keer vertalen A.U.B.

a smile
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post #9 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 03:23 PM
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Iam very Sorry. I didn't the translation below.

You really did a great job for the interview of Venus.

a smile
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post #10 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 03:51 PM Thread Starter
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aol made this a headline :)

Tennis-Venus says Clijsters, Henin could be number one

By Katie Nguyen


BRUSSELS, Feb 13 (Reuters) - World number two Venus Williams praised the talents of Belgium's Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters on Wednesday and predicted they could one day top the women's tennis rankings.

"Justine is really talented. She has a formidable stroke which allows her to use the racket in a way I can't," Williams said, describing the famed Henin backhand in an interview with La Derniere Heure newspaper.

"As for Kim Clijsters, she's very solid. She's not afraid of anything. Both of them have the undeniable potential to become number one in the world," she added.

"It's pretty incredible that a small country like Belgium could produce two such talented players."

The American came to Belgium after winning the Paris Open on Sunday when Yugoslav Jelena Dokic pulled out of the final due to a thigh injury.

She stepped in at the last minute after younger sister Serena withdrew from this week's Antwerp Open with an ankle injury.

Clijsters, Belgium's number one tennis player, was also forced to pull out with a stress fracture to her right arm.

TOP RANKING

If she continues in her current vein of form, Venus, who takes on Russia's Anna Kournikova in the second round of the $585,000 tournament, could get a chance to claim number one ranking for the first time in her career, edging out fellow American Jennifer Capriati, who is currently top of the rankings.

"To become number one in two weeks' time would be a wonderful thing, but I would also like to boost my trophy count with new Grand Slam titles," she said.

The field in Antwerp had better be braced as the athletic 22-year-old, who has four Grand Slams under her belt, warned she hates losing any match.

"Wherever I go on court I want to win. I know it's not always possible, but I can't bear losing," she said.

But giving up her top ranking in the future to younger stars like Clijsters or Henin is something she said she is resigned to.

"I have to be careful, all the more because they are young and have their futures ahead of them."

"I'm old. I'm getting arthritis. Soon, I'll have to wear glasses," she joked.

"I love the game, I love the thrill, I love the "Go Venus`."
"It takes a lot of work to get to this level, so while I can play I'm going to play."

Venus Ebone Starr Williams
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post #11 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 03:59 PM
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I may be stupid...but if you have a post and you put "for Venus fans" or "for serena fans" or for "Williams fans" in general forum, doesn't it seem rather pointless..if that is the only people you wish to be involved in the the thread then post it in the Williams forum. Why clog up this forum with stuff that you don't want 90% of the board to be involved with? or is it if someone takes exception to your post and states their opinion you can use that to cry victim?
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post #12 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 04:26 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
I may be stupid...
No comment on this one, but apparently you missed the begining of my post... I will repost it here especially for you

[COLOR= blue]
Quote:
I know that many of you do not post over at the Williams tennis Association, so I'd like to share this thanks to the posters Justinator and Josh
[/color]

"I love the game, I love the thrill, I love the "Go Venus`."
"It takes a lot of work to get to this level, so while I can play I'm going to play."

Venus Ebone Starr Williams
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post #13 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 04:28 PM
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I may be stupid

You may be stupid? Uh, there's no question about it.

Dammitt, Venus!!!
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post #14 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 04:30 PM
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He started the post stating the obvious, too funny!!
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post #15 of 46 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2002, 04:34 PM
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Thumbs up

LOL @ Hail-Venus.

You're so quick-witted.
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