Wimbledon round 2 interview -
Svetlana KuznetsovaS. Kuznetsova - Day 3
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Q. You've played with Sania before in the Juniors circuit?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, I didn't.
Q. As a junior in India?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, I never been to India.
Q. Okay. Were you surprised at the way things turned out today?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: The thing is, I played her in Dubai this year and she had good match. She played well in India ‑‑ oh, sorry, in Dubai. I didn't do so well.
Today, I mean, I just ‑‑ it wasn't my day at all. You know, as professional player, I ask myself to go through, to play through it, you know. I couldn't ‑‑ I didn't play at all. I couldn't do anything. I was just ‑‑ I couldn't move. I was so tense that my nerves just get me today. I just couldn't think properly, you know.
But I was there, you know. I was doing as it were going today. Next match, well, Sania, she is good player, but, I mean, there is big difference between us I think. She has great future. She has very good shots. But, I mean, if I play my game, I should have win much easier.
But of all conditions today, I just didn't do anything. I am very upset of the game I played, but I am very happy to go through.
And I understand it's a Grand Slam and I wanted to win so much. Nerves get me, because I was not moving and just didn't do anything. But my serve helped me out, so I'm very happy to get this match through.
Q. Had you ever been on Centre Court before?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, it was first time on Centre Court.
Q. Were you really nervous about that?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Yeah, of course. I mean, everything, you know. All pressure was on me, it was nothing on her. She was ‑‑ she had lower rank. She had nothing to lose.
I mean, I am here. I gotta win these matches. I am playing in big arena, on Centre Court. I guess they put my match because they were expecting me to play well, but I'm very upset I didn't do well. But hopefully next time I'll do better.
I mean, just very happy to get it through, but really upset with my game.
Q. You said you struggled, but how much was because of how much she pushed you? She pushed you all the way, didn't she?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Well, she was hitting good shots, but because I was letting her. I just didn't hit the ball at all. My game is to hit my forehand, is to go for my shots. I was doing all different today. I was serving. When I serve well, I wasn't expecting her to receive well, and she was doing it very well. She was keeping me back in baseline. I just was hitting ‑‑ I was trying to hit my backhands harder than my forehands. This is not ‑‑ this is not my game, you know.
She was playing well because I've been letting her go. I just was tense. I didn't know what to do. I pushed the ball up and she just hit it as hard as she could. This is her game. This is the way she play, and not my game. It was my worst against her best, and this is like it was.
But just, I don't know. Something came in my mind and I had to do serve and volley last game. This really helped me out.
Q. What do you plan to do to get over these problems in the next game that you face?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I guess I wouldn't have it. I cannot imagine to have every match like this because it's not possible, I hope, in this world, you know.
But I just will go and fight back again. I just want to win each match so bad, and I just want to play better, you know. I played much better last matches. I played much better than this one today. Just very happy because I stayed there and won this match.
Q. Do you enjoy playing on grass?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I didn't enjoy. You know, my goal now this season is like, "I did very well last season and I want to enjoy playing." I start like, you know, when you get on the court, you like not thinking like get tense, get nervous. It was today, it was just enjoying.
During the match, I was like, "You are not enjoying this." I was thinking, "But what you want to enjoy if you are so tense you just cannot do two steps to the side?"
I mean, I was looking like maybe a duck on the court today because I just ‑‑ I mean, I was silly, even embarrassed for my game because I just can't imagine how I could play that way.
Q. How much do you think it was the Centre Court versus being just at Wimbledon or just today with nerves?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Maybe like 30% of all my nerves. Maybe 30, 40.
But the thing is, I want to do so well. And wanting this, it's make me go so nervous, you know. But now it's looks like I'm saying that I play so bad and it's looks like I'm saying that Sania is not playing well. Yeah, she does play well, but I just expected much more game of me, you know, from my side.
I was very surprised when I saw last night's schedule and I was playing on the Centre Court. I was like, "Hell, no, I can't imagine this," you know. I know it was tough match because especially some player you never beat before, and I lost to her in Dubai. I know I didn't play well, you know, but still it's puts pressure on you. It just wasn't going. It was not my day, but I still happy to get it.
Q. At the US Open you played under the bright lights.
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Yeah.
Q. How is this different?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: You know, is just different. It's completely different. It's grass court. There is hard court. Hard court is my best ‑‑ best, I guess, best...
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: ...surface. I just catch up my game there, you know. It was like match to match I was playing, playing, and not thinking after now what is gonna be, after if I win, after if I win. Just in the final, I was like, "Wow, I'm in final." I played the best tennis I ever played, I guess, because I was hitting the ball as hard as I could. I was really doing my things I have to do: I served well, I played lots of forehand. I really was enjoying this. It was just a great atmosphere, great people, and just really good memories about it.
But also Wimbledon is so different, you know. It's completely like black and blue maybe, or white and black, you know, or red and black, whatever, you know. It's just different. It's like Sprite and Coke, you know. Doesn't matter that I love Sprite more than Coke, but it just completely different. But also I would love to do well here.
And also I just like Wimbledon because I know I can do different things here, you know. Maybe I can serve and volley more. I just have to push myself. I just have to see as moments as today, that it's help me out and it could help me out much more times. I will have to do it more.
Q. Is this your worst match that you've played for a while, do you feel?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, I don't think it's even like worst. Just nerves get me. I played ‑‑ I just don't know. I had really bad matches this year.
No, my worst match was in Rome, I think. But just this year was not going that well and I just ‑‑ you know, it's difficult because the years before I was coming like junior maybe and just had nothing to lose. Now, when you get to Top 10, maybe Top 5, you just have all the pressure on you. You have to understand. This takes you a while to understand it. You got to handle this pressure how you have to handle it. You have to learn it, you know.
Q. How do you cope with nerves now?
SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Well, trying to get matches, just try not to think of it. This is what I said. I'm trying to enjoy the tennis, you know. To play like players like Sania that play ‑‑ I mean, she was playing really well, but I was not doing the things what I'm doing well, so this is what gets me in problem.
I have to really concentrate on my things while I play.