Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Chelmsford, Essex
Q&A with Vanessa Webb
From Tennis Canada:
Canada’s Fed Cup team heads to Austria July 20-21 for an intense two-day World Group Playoff battle against the Europeans. The winner of the tie, which will be four singles matches and one doubles match played over two days, will advance to the prestigious World Group of the international women’s team event. Canada’s team will be named ten days before the event begins. Expect Toronto’s Vanessa Webb to be on hand to help the red and white fight their way into the World Group for the first time since 1994. She answered a few questions about the challenge ahead while in England for the Wimbledon Championships, where she is entered in the doubles draw.
Tennis Canada (TC): What are you guys expecting against Austria?
Vanessa: The team is excited and looking forward to the tie. It'll be tough since we're playing in Austria but as far as draws go, it could have been a lot worse.
TC: How much does it hurt you that you're playing on the road again?
Vanessa: It's hard. Last year, we qualified and had to play the Czech Republic in the Czech Republic. This year we qualified, lost the coin toss and now have to play on the road again. Many of us on the team have never had the opportunity to play Fed Cup in Canada. Unlike Davis Cup, our qualifying is always in Central America, so our only chance to play at home is when we qualify for the World Group Playoff.
TC: What will the team do to prepare for such a tie? How much time will you spend training as a team?
Vanessa: We'll head to Austria a week early to get settled, get some practise on the clay and get used to the time change. Tennis is such an individual sport that a week of training ahead of the tie helps us gain a more team-oriented mentality. Instead of just worrying about one's own game, it's becomes important to make sure that one's teammate is getting a good practise as well.
TC: How do you feel going in? Confident? Do you think the team can pull it off?
Vanessa: I feel confident. Everyone is really looking forward to the tie and we see it as a great challenge. We were not happy with our performance against the Czech Republic last year and I think this year, we really feel like we have something to prove. We don't want to go back to the Americas Qualifying Zone again next year.
TC: How important is Fed Cup to you personally? Does it rank right up there?
Vanessa: For me, representing my country is, without a doubt, the greatest honour. Not many people have the opportunity to represent their country on an individual stage, so I consider myself to be very fortunate. I also love being part of a team. It's much more rewarding when you play for something much greater than yourself - where your wins and losses impact others instead of just your own individual record.