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post #31 of 38 (permalink) Old Jun 15th, 2014, 09:41 PM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

The Charlotte Observer
Sunday, June 11, 1989
MARILYN AUGUST, Associated Press

Not many people would have put their pesetas on Aranxta Sanchez, the upstart Spanish teenager who dashed Steffi Graf `s hopes for a second straight Grand Slam.

Playing the best tennis of her life, Sanchez, 17, outdueled the heavily favored West German 7-6, 3-6, 7-5 in a gripping two-hour 58-minute marathon on Center Court.

It was a far cry from last year`s women`s final, where Graf romped over Natalia Zvereva of the Soviet Union in barely more than half an hour.

Sanchez also reached the final in the mixed doubles with Horacia de La Pena, but lost in three sets to Manon Bollegraf and Tom Nijssen.

Arantxa (pronounced Arancha) delighted the crowd with a mix of hard-hit ground strokes, blazing passing shots and, most of all, her boundless energy. Throwing herself into every shot, she slid athletically on the clay, ending up in splits.

``I fought until the end,`` Sanchez told a news conference. ``I fought for three hours out there to see if I could win the tournament of my life.``

Sanchez said she had always dreamed about winning the French Open, which she called her favorite.

King Juan Carlos of Spain and Queen Sofia sent Sanchez, a Barcelona native, a congratulatory telegram.

``With the greatest enthusiasm we send our most cordial congratulations over the sensational victory you have won at Roland Garros, which honors Spanish sports and fills all Spaniards with great joy. A warm embrace from
this entire family,`` the telegram said.

Sanchez displayed rare concentration for someone so young. She said she hardly noticed when Graf suddenly ran off the court and into the locker room at 6-5 in the third set.

``I was only thinking about the next game. That was my only concern,`` she said.

Sanchez is no newcomer to the French Open. Last year, she reached the quarterfinals, ousting seven-time winner Chris Evert in the third round.

Feisty on the court, playful and unassuming off the court, Sanchez is the youngest of four tennis-playing siblings. She has always looked up to her older brothers Javier, 21, Emilio, 24, both ranked players on the men`s circuit.

Arantxa is coached by former Chilean champion Juan Nunez.

``She still has a lot to learn, that`s what is so amazing about her.`` Nunez said. ``She`s going to be on top for a long time.``

Emilio, ranked No. 14 in the world, was on hand for his little sister`s first appearance in a Grand Slam final.

``I came and she gave me a present,`` he said. ``I always thought she could win.``

Sanchez is known as a bouncy, enthusiastic youngster who plays tennis as though it were a hobby, not an all-consuming full-time job.

Her passion paid off on Saturday, and it paid well. She earned $257,379 for the match of her life and more than she earned in all of 1988. Graf got $124,227 as the loser.

``Arantxa`s always very nice, she`s a great person,`` Graf said. ``I feel very good for her. She really loves to play.``
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post #32 of 38 (permalink) Old Jun 16th, 2014, 11:36 AM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

Sanchez Vicario rips Pierce, says she deserved her loss
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Tuesday, June 7, 1994

Spain's Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, the new French Open women's tennis champion, yesterday slammed runner-up Mary Pierce for arrogance before the match.

Sanchez Vicario , ranked No. 2 in the world, took her second French title with a 6-4, 6-4 win in Sunday's final over 12th-ranked Pierce, who had delighted the Paris crowd by ousting reigning champion Steffi Graf of Germany in the semifinals 6-2, 6-2.

"When she beat Steffi she seemed to think that she had it sewn up, but she had one more match to play to be champion," Sanchez Vicario told reporters on her return home.

"My victory gave Mary Pierce a smack in the face and now she should have a bit more respect for her opponents."

Sanchez Vicario said both Pierce and the French press seemed to think triumph in the final was a foregone conclusion.

"After all she said, I think all she achieved was to put pressure on herself. When she gets to be world No. 2, she can talk," Sanchez Vicario said.
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post #33 of 38 (permalink) Old Jun 16th, 2014, 11:55 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

^ Hahaha that's great!

~ gonna teach you tricks that'll blow your mongrel mind ~
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post #34 of 38 (permalink) Old Jun 27th, 2014, 02:27 AM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

A video of Michael Chang and Arantxa celebrating their 25th anniversary at Roland Garros.

Also a quick, fun article where Michael talks about a connection with Arantxa after they both win in Key Biscayne in 92.

Chang was very complimentary of Arantxa in his autobiography, mentioning how he watched her beat Steffi in the final and felt so motivated and confident, and then mentioned how honored he was that Arantxa said she was motivated by his big upset over Lendl.

Arantxa Sanchez Vicario Always #1
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post #35 of 38 (permalink) Old Jun 29th, 2014, 05:38 PM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

No headline available
Wednesday, June 28, 1989
MIKE DAVIS, Gannett News Service

WIMBLEDON, England - The sun never came out Wednesday at Wimbledon, but the new little Miss Sunshine of women's tennis did.

Arantxa Sanchez of Spain, the 17-year-old princess of Paris fresh off her upset of Steffi Graf for the French Open title, collected her first Wimbledon victory, defeating Jana Pospisilova, 19, of Czechoslovakia, 6-2, 7-5.

In her two previous Wimbledon appearances she was a first-round loser, to Belinda Cordwell in 1987 and Kumiko Okamoto last year.

"I play two years and lose in first round," Sanchez said while munching a banana at her post-match press conference. "I am feeling like grass is only for - how you call it? - the cows. Now I am thinking different. This give me lot of confidence because I play better."

Sanchez's twisted English - one of five languages she speaks - is just part of her appeal.

She charmed the world's socks off at the French Open, where her relentless baseline game and unaffected personality were showcased during and after the three-hour, three-set victory over Graf.

After becoming the youngest woman ever to win that Grand Slam event, she exclaimed, "I am very joyed. I am so exciting to win Steffi."

So "exciting" was she that she took a roll on the Roland Garros clay and broke into tears at the net, where her German rival gave her an affectionate hug.

Her reaction to winning Wednesday wasn't a lot different. After match point she thrust both arms in the air and pumped her fists - hardly the typical response to a routine first-round win by a No. 7 seed.

She said she was responding to the Court 1 crowd more than to winning.

"The people like my game, and they really go with me when I play," she said. "They say, `Come on Arantxa, this is good.' A lot of people, they watch me playing for first-round match, and this is what I am saying, `Thank you."'

Got all that?

Sanchez's name requires almost as much explanation as some of her sentences.

Arantxa (pronounced Ah-RAN-cha) is a shortened form of "Aranzazu," the patron saint of the Basques, for whom she is named.

For the purposes of this tournament, at least, her name officially is listed as "Miss A. Sanchez Vicario."

Vicario is her mother's maiden name.

"They call me, the people from the newspaper, and they (ask) me if after the French Open I marry with somebody," she said. "So I say no, no. It is the name for my mother, and they say OK. But it looks like I am married, you know."

Family is a big thing with Sanchez.

One brother, Emilio, is the world's No. 18-ranked men's player; another, Javier, is No. 60 and was the world's No. 1 junior in 1986 (neither is playing Wimbledon). Both brothers and Arantxa's parents, Emilio and Marisa, were in the stands for the French Open final.

Emilio Sr. is an engineer in Barcelona. Marisa, a teacher, travels the women's circuit with Arantxa.

"When you travel with somebody from your family, you feel much better," Arantxa said. "If I have some peoblems, I can talk to my mom and is the best person you can talk (to)."

Arantxa figures to have problems at Wimbledon; her backcourt game is ill-suited to the grass surfaces.

"I think it is going to be difficult because I am not a specialist on this court, but I am going to try to play good and do it like I do it in the French Open," she said. "I think I have to learn to play in this courts.

"I do not know when I am going to win Wimbledon but I have a lot of time, you know, and I think that maybe one year I can do it."
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post #36 of 38 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 2014, 08:02 PM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

Monday, March 13, 1989
By JIM SARNI, Staff Writer

BOCA RATON -- Fate had a name, Arantxa Sanchez. She controlled the draw for the Virginia Slims of Florida on Friday afternoon at The Polo Club.

The Spanish teen-ager selected names and numbers of the players from a crystal trophy, determining the pairings for the tournament, which begins today.

Sanchez, the eighth seed, called her own name on line 49. After a first-round bye, Sanchez will meet the winner of the match between Kate Gompert and Niege Dias. Sanchez is seeded to play No. 14 Nathalie Tauziat in the third round, then No. 2 Gabriela Sabatini in the quarterfinals.

''For me, it's good,'' said Sanchez, 17, who is playing her first event after a three-month layoff.

Sanchez, who cracked the Top 20 last year -- she's ranked No. 19 -- is eager to start the season.

''I hope to make the Top Ten this year,'' said Sanchez, who was voted the WITA's Most Improved Player in 1988. ''I have confidence about this. Next year, I want to go higher, and some day, I want to be No. 1.''

Sanchez has a new coach, Boca Raton's Juan Nunez, who will travel with her on the tour.

''I need a coach who can travel with me,'' Sanchez said. ''My old coach could not do that.''

Sanchez, the younger sister of pros Emilio and Javier, made her mark last year at the French Open, where she upset Chris Evert 6-1, 7-6 in the Round of 16.

''I beat the idol of my life,'' Sanchez said. ''I had the chance to win. It was a good victory for me.''

Sanchez won her first title last year at the Belgian Open, and has been working on improving her game, which has primarily been suited to clay courts in the past.

''My forehand and backhand are good,'' she said. ''I need to work on my serve and volley.''

Sanchez became the No. 8 seed after Manuela Maleeva (ankle injury) withdrew Friday. The top eight seeds don't play first-round matches in the 56-player field.

NOTES: Evert is expected to play her first match at 6 p.m. Tuesday... Steffi Graf is scheduled to play her first match Wednesday.
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post #37 of 38 (permalink) Old Jan 19th, 2015, 01:24 AM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

Spain's leading lady ready for coronation as queen of the court - Arantxa Sanchez Vicario
The Times
London, England
Saturday, January 14, 1995
Stuart Jones, Tennis Correspondent

Over the past two decades, five women have ruled the world of tennis. Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova deposed each other in turn and so, after Tracy Austin's brief reign, did Steffi Graf and Monica Seles. In a fortnight, a new queen may be crowned.

If Arantxa Sanchez Vicario wins the Australian Open in Melbourne, she will almost certainly collect enough points, with the requisite bonuses, to overtake Graf and become the sixth woman to be ranked No1 since 1975. The honourable status will be a reward principally for toil.

Memorably christened ``the Barcelona Bumblebee" by Bud Collins, the eccentric American television commentator, she resembles perpetual motion. Even when she is still, her eyes dart, invariably in the direction of her mother, Marisa, her constant companion and professed best friend.

The glances, exchanged between virtually every point she plays, are the most visible manifestations of Sanchez Vicario's fundamental strength, her upbringing. She has never wished, nor been permitted, to leave the bosom of her close-knit, middle-class Catalan family.

Her freedom was bound to be restricted once her elder sister, also known as Marisa, had left home in 1983 to study in California. After graduating from Pepperdine University, she went on to become a sports reporter on Spanish television before getting married.

Her father, Emilio, was initially so distressed by the absence of the eldest of his four children that he determined that the youngest would not follow suit. But Arantxa, who began practising on a backboard when she was four, was about to embark on a career that would also take her far away from the nest.

Her origins in the sport were as uncomplicated as her background. ``I see balls and I start," she says in her faltering English, which carries the stress patterns of her native tongue. Encouraged by her equally talented brothers, she so copied them that she walks like the younger, also named Emilio. By the time she was 13, she was considered the best woman player in Spain, but before she could turn professional, like Emilio and Javier, a compromise was reached. The father would remain working as an engineer at home and the mother would, when her teaching duties allowed, act as her chaperone.

Almost a decade later, the parents retain their roles. In recognition of her mother's protective influence, the daughter adopted her maiden name of Vicario after she had claimed her first grand slam championship, the French Open, as the seventh seed in 1989, when she was aged a mere 17 years and five months.

Now 23 and the French and US Open champion, she has yet to discover her independence, to stand on her own constantly moving feet. Ingenuous despite her extensive travels, she is renowned for her effervescence, especially off court.

``Can anyone imagine this girl ever being jaded or isolating herself?" Evert once asked. ``She inhales life." She exudes cheerfulness, too, as was illustrated when another American television commentator, Mary Carillo, waited to talk to her at Roland Garros in 1990. Sanchez Vicario had just yielded her French title, beaten ignominiously in the first round. ``I was concerned that she'd be upset," Carillo recalled, ``but she came rushing past me, smiling and saying she'd be back after her dope test. She's happy even being tested for drugs."

The tennis court is Sanchez Vicario's greatest source of contentment. In an era when many of the leading competitors disregard doubles, she is prepared to set a record for the number of matches completed in a year 167 (less than half of them in singles) in 1992.

Not only that. As well as entering the mixed doubles in grand slam events, she regularly performs in exhibitions, enhancing the financial rewards that she finds magnetically appealing. She was a millionairess before she came of age and now resides as a tax exile in Andorra.

Her friendly openness on the tennis circuit is facilitated by her command of languages. She speaks five of them. Recently, when giving an interview in Italian, she noticed an approaching American journalist and asked if she could switch to English. She did so without hesitation.

Yet she has received no formal tuition. She has picked up English on her journeys around the globe and converses with French and Italian colleagues in their own tongues. When she was living at an academy in Germany at the beginning of her teenage years, learning the language was a necessity. Her ease of communication has been a compensation for the sacrifices the profession demands. ``I miss many things," she said, ``studying, a career, relationships. But you learn a lot of things, you meet lots of people and I am one of the most popular sports figures in Spain."

At 5ft 61/2in, she is among the shorter players on the WTA tour, but her stocky frame has hardly ever let her down. Nobody can remember her being affected by injury. Her physical durability, as well as being her trademark on court, is poignant in the light of the continuing absence of both of her leading rivals. Seles has yet to return after being stabbed some 20 months ago and Graf, after recovering from a troublesome back, has torn a calf muscle.

Sanchez Vicario also evidently responds fearlessly to a crisis. At match point down to a comparative unknown, Raffaella Reggi, on the Centre Court at Wimbledon three years ago, she executed a drop shot, outrageously, from behind the baseline.

Caught by the cameras as she stood poised to beat Graf in the final of the French Open in 1989, she was seen licking lips which, by rights, should have been dry, particularly in one so youthful. She subsequently named her pet dog, a Yorkshire terrier, ``Roland", after the venue of her unforeseen triumph.

It was witnessed by King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia, who returned to Paris to see her regain the title (and her compatriot, Sergi Bruguera, retain the men's crown) last June. Her followers extend beyond royal circles. They include members of a Spanish rock group, Mecano.

An avid supporter of Barcelona's football team, she has irritated opponents with her tendency to question line calls and to point overtly to the spot where she feels the ball has landed. It is an extension of her aggression, for which she is highly regarded.

``She loves to intimidate," Pam Shriver said, ``and her aura can be scary. Inch for inch, I think she gets more out of her game than any other competitor." That doggedness took Sanchez Vicario to No2 in the world rankings for the first time in September 1993.

She has steadily been climbing closer to Graf, who last week revealed that she would be unable to defend the Australian Open, the last grand slam title she won. Thus, the Barcelona Bumblebee may at last be about to come to rest on the pinnacle of her sport.
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post #38 of 38 (permalink) Old Jan 26th, 2015, 01:23 AM
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Re: Great Arantxa Sanchez Vicario article

Sanchez seeks a new world order - Tennis
The Times
London, England
Monday, January 23, 1995
Alix Ramsey

THEY CALL her the Barcelona Bumblebee, busily buzzing around the baseline, chasing down every ball, flitting around the court, purposeful and businesslike. According to the laws of aerodynamics, the bumblebee has no business flying. It should not be able to take off, much less stay aloft. Yet there it is, small, round and proudly airborne. No scientist is going to tell the bumblebee it cannot fly, and no pundit is going to tell Arantxa Sanchez Vicario she cannot be the best player in the world.

Since she was a child she has dreamed of being the best; she has planned for it, worked for it and no one is going to stop her achieving it. She first took off five and a half years ago, at the French Open, a title she won at 17, and has shown no signs of coming in to land since.

A bumblebee on court, she is much the same off it, flying from one commitment to another. And all the while talking just as she plays without pausing for breath.

She is an inordinately happy soul. In the world of moaners and prima donnas that go to make up the worst side of tennis, Sanchez Vicario comes as something of a relief. She enjoys her job and she knows she is good at it. But never for a minute think she takes a carefree approach to her tennis. She may be cheerful but she is also fiercely determined.

Coming into the Australian Open she knows she is the nearest she has ever been to deposing Steffi Graf from the No1 spot. Graf has five tournament titles to defend as the season gets under way and already has been forced to withdraw from the Open with a pulled calf muscle. The door is opening for Sanchez Vicario. ``I always dreamed of being No1 in the world and now it is closer than ever," she said. ``But it's not an obsession for me. I just want to go step by step, as I have all these years."

Doing things one step at a time has always been the Sanchez Vicario way. When she won at Roland Garros in 1989 she surprised herself as much as anybody that was a title she had pencilled in for when she was around 20. As a result, the five-year wait for the next grand slam success was seldom fraught, more a case of improving, working and waiting. She knew she would win again, it was just a matter of time.

``You can never see me frustrated on court because I am always mentally strong," she said. ``You will never see me disappointed on the court. Even if I miss a shot you will see me maybe not with a smile but always with confidence in myself, always relaxed and calm."

The confidence is based on the support of Team Sanchez. Her two tennis-playing brothers, Emilio and Javier, are her friends, her fans and her confidants. As the family set out on the tennis merry-go-round, Javier looked up to Emilio and Arantxa followed suit, and it is to Emilio she turns when the going gets tough. And always at her side is her mother, Marisa, who is also her best friend.

``I always had a good education from my parents," she said. ``My family have been a big influence on me, especially my brothers. I have always had that support from my family and that's very important."

With life on the circuit varying between the tense and the plain dull, Sanchez Vicario keeps her professional and private lives separate. When she is off duty, tennis is a banned topic. Never one to get bogged down in the trials and tribulations of the tennis pro's life that seem to plague colleagues, Sanchez Vicario knows when to cut loose to see her friends, go shopping (with $8m in the bank from prize-money alone, it is an understandable hobby) and view the works of her favourite artists, Dali and Picasso in the galleries.

Back on court, there is little surreal or abstract about Sanchez Vicario's play. She plays to win and will not let up until she has what she wants. At Flinders Park last year she was blown away by a peerless Graf; not even her tireless running could stop the German taking yet another crown. With Graf out of the way in Paris, Mary Pierce was too inexperienced to prevent Sanchez Vicario steamrollering her way to victory. By the time of the US Open, Graf's nerve was as suspect as her back and the Spaniard wore her down over three sets.

``I was expecting and looking forward to winning one grand slam last year," she said. ``After the French Open I was feeling very confident with my game so I knew it could be a good year. And then came the US Open which was a dream come real for me because it was the one I most wanted to win after the French."

At the same time, teamed up with Jana Novotna, she was maintaining her position as one of the best doubles players in the world. At first glance, Sanchez Vicario and Novotna appear to be the doubles pairing from hell. Sanchez Vicario is the baseliner with the will of iron and Novotna is the serve-and-volley specialist with nerves of glass. Yet the partnership works and Sanchez Vicario admits that since she started to concentrate on doubles her game has improved.

``Now I have the confidence to serve and volley, to stay back, to come in, to be aggressive and to play on all the different surfaces," she said. ``You have to play on all the surfaces to be No1 and doubles has helped me play singles."

When it comes to the crunch, however, it is singles that dominate Sanchez Vicario's thoughts. Last year was a great one for her. She won two of the four grand slams, a feat that earned her the title of world champion and earned her a $750,000 bonus, and she took home a whisker under $3m in prize-money.

But for the Barcelona Bumblebee there is one fly in the ointment. In the rankings that matter, the WTA Tour rankings, she finished second to Graf. ``In all the other rankings, I finished the year as No1, but not on the computer. So definitely that is a big goal for me. But it is something that, if it comes, will come with time."

In the meantime, Flinders Park beckons and, confident as ever, Sanchez Vicario has the title in her sights. If the Australian Open eludes her again, fear not, the bumblebee will not be disheartened; there is always next time. ``I always have time to enjoy myself, and I always look to have a good time," she said. ``I am a very happy person."
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