QUÉBEC CITY, Canada
- With the 2008 season behind us and 2009 on the horizon, it's the perfect time to visit with some of the stars of the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour for Looking Back, Looking Forward... Nathalie Dechy is the first subject for the feature.
How would you summarize your 2008?
The early part of the season wasn't very good for me. I think I was travelling a bit too much - I went to Asia twice for Fed Cup, among other trips. My level of tennis wasn't so good. But I started playing well again in the summer, so the second half was good.
What were your best moments?
I think I had my best results on grass and reaching the final of Cincinnati. I had good matches at Eastbourne then played well against Ivanovic at Wimbledon. It's always tough to take positives from a loss, but I feel I played very well in my match with her there; it was only a net cord on match point that really stopped me! I also reached the doubles semifinals, which was a great result. I gained confidence at Wimbledon and played better the rest of the year.
What was your coaching situation?
I started working with my father again at the beginning of May, during the clay court season. We decided to start working together again at the end of April. He knows me so well - he actually coached me when I was young, until I was 13.
How did 2008 compare with other seasons in your career?
It was encouraging. I had my best years a few years ago; 2006 and 2007 weren't so good, but this year I won more matches than I did those two years, so I feel like maybe I'm going to keep improving and have more good years coming up.
What was the biggest off-court development of the year for you?
I would give the same answer again, which is my father coaching me again. He'll be good for my game; we work together well. I feel very comfortable.
What are your goals for 2009?
My main two goals are to stay fit and healthy and just to enjoy my game. I think if I can do those things, the results will come.
What do you think of the 2009 calendar?
We've known what kinds of changes there will be for a while now, but we'll see how it will play out. I'm definitely excited for it. I already played less tournaments this year, just the ones I really like, so I've already cut my schedule down a little bit and it probably won't be hard to get used to. When you get older, you have the privilege of being a bit more selective! Like everyone else though, I'll be starting in Australia, so that's my focus right now.