Great year end interview with Sorana
How was the year 2013 for you?
It was a good year in which I have progressed. I began the year ranked 27th on the WTA tour and I finished 22th. I made small, but firm steps. Overall it was a steady year, I played better from month to month and I'm pleased with what I achieved .
What was your best win this year?
It was certainly achieved in Toronto. I think the match against Wozniacki or Jankovic in the first two rounds. From my point of view, they were the hardest matches. Then I got so much confidence that I felt I could beat anyone. The following victories have therefore not seemed so special.
And the toughest defeat?
There were several. It's between the failures at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open. After going far in Toronto, I wanted very much to play a good tournament and I failed ... the frustration of my failure was high. And in London, after the match (against Camila Giorgi 6-7 , 6-7 ) , I said that if I would have played 100 times against her, I would have lost any single time.
By the end of the year you had some less successful tournament. What was the cause?
In Toronto I got injured. I suffered from a rupture in my abdominal muscles by two centimetres, I tried to pull myself together, but it didn't really work out. At the U.S. Open it started to hurt a lot. Then I shouldn't have played the last four tournaments, but I told myself to try. I was at the end of the season, I got tired and due to these factors I lost. But despite these losses, I can not forget the good year I had.
What's the best gift you've ever received from a fan this year?
I received a book in China which contained all posts and photos posted by me on Twiter . The book has over 100 pages and I found it incredible how much patience the fan had to gather all my messages. To do that, it means that you care about me enormously. I was touched by her gesture, especially since China 's restricted access Twiter . Throughout the year I get all kinds of plush animals that are sent home to Targoviste. I have them all.
What do you miss most when you 're on the tour?
Hard to say, because I'm abroad for most of the year. When I come home, the first thing you do is to ask my mom to make polenta . Obviously, I miss my family very much . But I'm used to this lifestyle .
Is Victor Ionita the perfect coach for you?
Yes! Until now, yeah! We are now working together for two years and he is the one who helps me a lot. I have great confidence in him and I am very grateful for what he did. He brought stability into my game consistency.
Serena really seems undefeatable...
Not unbeatable, but it's not a coincidence that she is on number one. It's very uncomfortable for me. I like to play aggressive and dominate, but against Serena it's very hard to do. But I want to play her as often as possible because I am convinced that the day will come that I will win.
Do we have to wait for her to retire to see Romanian players on top?
No. First I want to fight her, then she can retire.
What did you feel in the moment that you saw the rise of Simona Halep?
I am very happy for her, really. The world is not aware of the value of results that she obtained. I think next year will be even better, for her and for me.
Are you jealous of her success?
No. I have no reason to be jealous. I think everyone has his/her way in life. She quickly climbed the rankings, I did slowly but steadily. I am happy because I know how much work it needed to get there. It's a lot of effort behind these results.
Speaking of value, how do you rate the distance between you and Simona?
I do not know what is the difference between us. the rankings speak for themselves. If she finished on 11th place, it means that she played 11th best. I, when I finished at #22 , then I played 22nd best. Now we must work even harder to back up the trend.
Are you surprised by Simona's results?
No. In tennis, anything is possible. On the girls' tour, the differences start to equalize. Now, you can lose to #100 today and play an even match against #10 tomorrow.
Do you think you or Simona can reach number one?
It's normal. Everyone wants to reach this position, and if I didn't believe, I would not play tennis. It depends very much on how we will work further and how we manage our careers.
One last question: What do you wish for 2014?
First I want health. the best tactical preparation is useless, if the body does not help. I'm sure I'll climb up several positions. I do not have a fixed target because I do not want to put unnecessary pressure on myself.