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View Full Version : WTA CHAMPIONSHIPS KNOWLEDGE AND CHEERING THREAD


Serendy Willick
Oct 25th, 2002, 03:12 PM
Alright! Lets get this party Started! lets start off with a Serena interview and cheer for her to defend her title at the championships in LA!:bounce: :bounce: GO SERENA! Lets jumpstart it with an interview

Serena interview while promoting LA tour championships
The "Serena era"
Williams on her dominance, the cat suit, Johnny Mac who?, Venus' slump, her 'real self'
By Matthew Cronin
********************

The following are excerpts of a press conference that No. 1 Serena Williams did from the Staples Center to promote the upcoming WTA Home Depot Championships in Los Angeles, Nov. 6-11. Here, Serena discusses her place in history, the history and future of her infamous Cat Suit, acting, Compton and John McEnroe.

Q: Some years ago, you were still living in nearby Compton, playing on neighborhood courts. Can you share a story about when you were growing up there?
Serena: I remember when Venus and I played each other at the Great Western Forum, I was nine, she was 11 and we went on before Connors and McEnroe. So now whenever I'm around a Laker arena, I think of that. I was really excited.

Q: Is it somehow poetic justice that things have flip-flopped. At this year's U.S. Open, when McEnroe played Becker, he was your warm-up act before your final with Venus?
Serena: Who? [laughing].

Q: We've seen [Martina] Navratilova, [Monica] Seles and [Steffi] Graf dominate. Could you dominate like them?
Serena: To even be compared to them is an honor. Hopefully, it could be the "Serena era." That's scary.

Q: Is it kind of scary that you still have a long way to go in your game? You could still work on your volleys and ... ?
Serena: Yeah, volleys and serves. I don't come to net nearly enough. That's scary. I have great volleys and have won five Grand Slam doubles titles. It's not scary for me; it's scary for other people.

Q: Monica Seles indicated that, mentally, you are now the toughest on tour. Do you agree?
Serena: Maybe. I never give up, stay focused and always believe I can win. Even when I lose and am shaking hands with somebody I find it hard to believe.

Q: Off-court, you love to laugh, smile and joke so much. But when you step on court, you're so fierce and serious. What a difference?
Serena: I'm the type of person who believes you should leave everything on court. I leave all my emotions in the match and then, when I step off, I'm done and I'm Serena again. That's why I try to be really tough out there and give everything so when I leave, I know I've given everything.

Q: On a scale of one to 10, where does 2002 rate?
Serena: A seven. I didn't come to the net. I didn't serve great all year.

Q: So then what's a nine or 10 for Serena?
Serena: Net play, more consistency and fewer losses.

Q: You've had such a breakthrough year. Is there one word that defines it?
Serena: Maturity. Having to let go.

Q: Does that feel good?
Serena: Yeah. I'm trying to enjoy the moment because you never know what can happen.

Q: At Wimbledon you noted that you and Venus "have grabbed tennis by the belly button ring and run off with it." Of course, we actually didn't realize tennis had a belly ring?
Serena: I meant that Venus has grabbed me at my belly button ring and we've run off. [Now] people are trying to get at us, clawing at us and trying to grab and pull us back.

Q: A couple of weeks ago, Venus confided that she was tired of the game and wasn't sure if tennis could provide her with enough motivation anymore. She said she maybe needed to pursue some off-court interests.
Serena: It's the fall blues. Everyone's played the Grand Slams, the pressure's off, but you have to keep proving yourself at the smaller tournaments and it's hard to get up for them. That's been the difference for me this year. I've been able to get up for them even when I didn't want to. Venus will come back strong.

Q: Venus was so joyful after her big wins early in her career. Now she appears far more withdrawn. Will you be able to sustain that infectious joy of yours?
Serena: Now, when I win tournaments, I'm not as excited as the first few times. I don't get really excited after a win. Now I get happy during points and get pumped up, but not as much as before. But I don't think my excitement will completely go away because it's part of my personality to pump my fist and scream.

Q: Who's the real Serena?
Serena: I'm really easy going and laid back, but I always have to have something to do. If I have time off, I'll rest for a week, but I always have to have something -- not necessarily tennis, but I have to keep moving. Different things -- acting, modeling, print ads -- I always keep my sketch book with me.

Q: Which Serena do you learn more from, the oncourt Serena or off-court Serena?
Serena: The oncourt because I'm more focused, serious and have a tenacity about me that makes me want to fight.

Q: Will the cat suit come back?
Serena: It might make a reappearance. It's in popular demand right now. People are calling me everyday and begging me to wear it.

Q: Were you surprised by the attention it got?
Serena: I was. I wasn't wearing it to get all that attention. It was Puma's design. I was really nervous wearing it the first night.

Q: What went through your mind opening night at the U.S. Open when you took off your black warm-up jacket and right away all those "oohs" and "aahs" rippled through the crowd?
Serena: I was supposed to practice in it, but I didn't because I procrastinated. I didn't know how it was going to feel, so I was really nervous.

Q: Did you know that Bill Simon, the Republican candidate for governor, has officially come out in support of the cat suit?
Serena: The cat suit has crossed all barriers, sports, political. I'm glad he supports it.

Q: What's the one quality that the public doesn't know about Serena Williams?
Serena: I think the public knows enough about me.

Q: But now you're almost a crossover star -- MTV, general-interest magazine covers, acting in sitcoms.
Serena: Definitely. I've never considered tennis to be my only outlet. I've always done different things because I like to.

Q: How's the acting going?
Serena: Really good. My acting coach is good.

Q: And what's the difference between tennis and acting coaches?
Serena: Acting coaches are more fun. They don't yell. They're easier.

Q: They don't scream "Hey, you didn't nail that line."
Serena: Yeah.

Q: Here's a Charles Barkley question: Are you a role mode?
Serena: Yes. I don't shy away from being a role model. A lot of kids follow Venus and I. We're in a sport where there aren't a lot of people of our color who have done so well and kids might look at us and say, "Hey, we can do it, too." I think I'm a role model for kids of all races and nationalities. It's cool.

GO RENA!

:bounce: :bounce:

King Aaron
Oct 27th, 2002, 07:40 AM
Thanks Luci :D

Go Rena!

Rubylips
Oct 27th, 2002, 07:48 PM
:wavey: yOUR"LL alway on time.Thank"s my friend.:wavey: :bounce: :) :kiss:

Serendy Willick
Nov 2nd, 2002, 07:26 PM
Heres Serenas profile, on the sanex site. I think The title has described her throughout her career.:) :bounce:

Serena Williams: Wonder woman

What a year Serena Williams has had! The stand-out player of 2002, she started the season ranked No.6, slipped to as low as No.9, but finished a clear-cut No.1.

Luck wasn’t on the American’s side early in the year, spraining her right ankle in the semifinals of Sydney, her first tournament of the year. But after withdrawing from the Australian Open, there was barely a hint of bad news from then on.

Reaching nine finals in her next 11 events, Serena won a Tour-leading eight singles titles coming into LA. Grand Slams at Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the US Open came at the expense of older sister Venus in the final each time, becoming the first player since Hingis in 1997 to have such a prosperous Grand Slam season.

Her 21-match win streak from May to August was unsurpassed all year and her $3,275,826 in year-to-date earnings was a million more than anyone else. Indeed, should Serena reach the semifinals or better in LA, the 21-year-old would have amassed more in one season than any other woman in history. Victory would make Serena the first-ever ‘4 Million Dollar Woman’ and tip her over $10 million in career earnings, the 10th woman to reach that magic figure.

Serena is also looking to become the first woman since Steffi Graf (1995/96) to successfully defend her Championships title. Victory in Munich last year came when Lindsay Davenport withdrew due to a knee injury sustained at the end of her three-set semifinal win over Kim Clijsters.

Becool
Nov 3rd, 2002, 06:01 PM
:D
Nice article :) And awesome interview :bounce:


GO SERENA! Destroy the whole Championship field and make another 'Steffi Graf' ;)

Serendy Willick
Nov 3rd, 2002, 06:52 PM
Heres the draw, Serenas first opponent is Anna Smashnova who Serena should "smash" quite eaisily.:bounce: :bounce: BTW, Venus draw stinks, but its not as bad as Monica who gets Davenport:eek: :mad:

1 - S.Williams USA Vs. A.Smashnova ISR
A.Myskina RUS Vs. 8 - J.Dokic YUG

3 - J.Capriati USA Vs. S.Farina Elia ITA
M.Maleeva BUL Vs. 7 - D.Hantuchova SVK

5 - K.Clijsters BEL Vs. C.Rubin USA
E.Dementieva RUS Vs. 4- J.Henin BEL

6 - M.Seles USA Vs. L.Davenport USA
P.Schnider SUI Vs. 2 - V.Williams USA

GO GIRLS! All willis all the time:bounce: :bounce:

Serendy Willick
Nov 6th, 2002, 05:13 PM
Heres a great (and kinda corny)article on her. Its nice to see her finally getting the respect she deserves:bounce: :bounce:

Laughter is her rallying cry

By Greg Boeck, USA TODAY

Serena Williams enters the season-ending Home Depot Championships starting Wednesday in Los Angeles poised to become tennis' first $4 Million Wonder Woman. But the wonder of this 21-year-old woman extends far beyond the nets she has ruled this year in an implausible rise from No. 9 to No. 1 that shook up the pecking order of a family more than it did the Sanex Women's Tennis Association Tour.


Serena guest stars as a teacher on the Oct. 30 episode of My Wife and Kids.
Carol Kaelson, ABC

Forget the history-making three Grand Slam titles she won in a row at the expense of her older sister, Venus, whom she replaced at No. 1. Never mind the clinging Lycra catsuit she wore at the U.S. Open in New York that shoved tennis heartthrob Anna Kournikova off the tabloid front pages.

Instead, focus in on The Laugh. You can't miss it. It defines Serena Williams. On the court, where she's tennis' smiling assassin. Or in the privacy of her bathroom, where she retreats to her favorite spot on the planet, a mirror-lined vanity area, and talks and laughs for hours on her cell phone with friends.

(start sidebar)
Serena at a glance

Born: Sept. 26, 1981, Saginaw, Mich.

Resides: Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

Height, weight: 5-8, 130.

Career singles titles: 19.

Grand Slam titles: 4.

Worst vice: Hostess Zingers. "If I see them, I grab them."

Best school grade: A in geometry.

Next vacation: Africa. "Those are my roots. Maybe I'll be going next year."

Favorite designer: "It's impossible to have a favorite one. I get ideas from everybody, Versace, Armani, Tom Ford, Ralph Lauren. Everybody inspires me."

Least favorite acting role: Playing herself. "Anyone can play themselves. I'm a little better than that. I like to challenge myself."

On being female version of Tiger Woods: "Tiger has done so much in his sport, and I guess I have, as well as Venus. You can say a female version of Tiger. Or Tiger is a male version of the Williams sisters."

Money milestones: Serena Williams would become the first female athlete to top $4 million in a year if she wins the Home Depot Championships and the $765,000. She has $3,275,826.

Other milestones:

$100,000 — Tennis: 1971, Billie Jean King ($117,000); Golf: 1976, Judy Rankin ($150,734)

$1 million — Tennis: 1982, Martina Navratilova ($1,475,055); Golf: 1996, Karrie Webb ($1,002,000)

$2 million — Tennis: 1984, Navratilova ($2,173,556); Golf: 2001, Annika Sorenstam ($2,105,868)

$3 million — Tennis: 1997, Martina Hingis ($3,400,196); Golf: Sorenstam (close this year but can't do it)
(end sidebar)

It's her calling card, the window into her soul. She has not only laughed her way to the top of the tennis world with her aggressive game, fun-loving personality, witty demeanor and bold attitude, but also into Hollywood's entertainment circle and Fifth Avenue's world of design.

Has anyone in sports — male or female — embraced life in the last year with more passion and joy, more fun and laughter, than Serena Williams? Her mother, Oracene, says the The Laugh is Serena's best trait. Daughter agrees.

"I think so, because if you can't laugh yourself out of a situation, then life gets a bit too stressful or you just won't be happy," Williams says. "It's important, whatever you are doing, playing tennis or modeling, you have to be happy. That's why I like to smile and laugh. I enjoy myself."

Nobody enjoyed winning on the women's tour more than Williams this season. After withdrawing from the semifinals of the Australian Open with a sprained ankle, she reached the finals in nine of her next 11 events and won a Tour-leading eight singles titles — including Grand Slams at Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.

If she defends her title at the $3 million WTA indoor stop this week, she not only would become the first woman to surpass $4 million in a season but also the 10th to surpass $10 million in career earnings. All at 21 for less than two months.

The 'Serena Slam'

Storybook year? For sure, she says. "When I wasn't able to play the Australian Open, I decided I was tired of losing. Maybe it was good that I wasn't able to play. After that I decided I want to be the best."

Venus, she says, was her inspiration — and her victim. In Paris, then in Wimbledon, where she took over Venus' No. 1 ranking. And, finally, in New York, where she straight-setted Venus to become the first player since Martina Hingis in 1997 to win three majors in one season and only the sixth woman to win three consecutive Grand Slams in the same year.

Next up: The Serena Slam — winning four Slams in a row with a victory in January at the Australian Open. "We'll have to call it that," she says. "It has a ring to it."

She laughs. Sometimes it's a giddy laugh. She's still a girlish 21, unspoiled by the opportunities every fresh morning brings. Other times it's a nervous laugh. "It comes at the wrong times, too," she says, sheepishly. Mostly, though, it's an infectious laugh that echoes the joy of everything she does.

Williams grew up the youngest of five girls in a rough Compton, Calif., neighborhood but embraced the regimented lifestyle her father, Richard, introduced her to at 5 1/2 — and everything else her parents taught her.

No. 1 lesson: Don't restrict yourself to one interest.

Williams hasn't. She is a voracious reader. In Germany during a Tour stop this season, she read three books in one week. "It was ridiculous! It's so boring there," she says.

She reads a book a week. One of her favorite authors: Poet Maya Angelou. But she likes fiction the most.

She's also exploring the worlds of acting and design. Tennis, she says, won't last forever. "In 10 years, I don't see myself playing tennis anymore. I want to do different things. Hopefully, it'll be acting. That's my goal. Regardless, I'll have my fashion house."

She's serious about acting. She hired an acting coach recently and has two auditions scheduled while in Los Angeles. "I'm reading for the director so they can get a feel for what I do," she says. "Traditionally, athletes aren't very good at acting. I want directors to get a feel for me, that way I won't be dubbed like everyone else."

She was a guest voice on a 2001 episode of the animated TV show The Simpsons, appeared in rapper Memphis Bleek's Do My video featuring Jay-Z, made a cameo in Martin Lawrence's movie Black Knight last year and recently portrayed a teacher at Damon Wayans' son's (daughter's...) school in an episode of ABC's My Wife and Kids.

"I really had fun with the role," Williams says. "I'm pretty good at (acting). Like tennis, it just comes natural to me. When I take something serious, I go all out, and so I'm going all out for it and have fun and see what happens."

She calls Sandra Bullock her acting inspiration. "Actors have this personality," she says. "They're outgoing. That's me. They are kind of ... I want to say ... crazy, and that totally describes me to a 't.' "

Another laugh. It's almost like every day is Christmas for Williams. There's always a new present to open. Like her passion for designing.

She spent three semesters at the Art Institute of Florida near the Palm Beach Gardens home she has shared with Venus the last two years. Out of those classes came a line of sportswear she designed for Puma.

But mainly she's into designing evening wear. She's in the process of hiring a pattern maker. "It's totally on me," she says, "not someone else. Eventually I'm going to hire a designer to work out the designs. I'm also looking into my own company. I'm branching out."

On the ride of her life

Who knows what's next? Unlike so many athletes at the top, Williams is determined to enjoy the ride and milk it dry. These are special times, and she appreciates them, even though she says it leaves her precious little private time.

"I don't get much," she says. "I'm always doing something, an interview, a photo shoot, something like that."

She gets away to five or six Miami Heat NBA games a year but rarely dates. Asked if there was anyone special in her life, she says, "No, I'm very single. Very, very single. Right now I'm focused on my tennis. It's not like I'm looking for anybody. I'm just looking to do well in my sport. I'm not trying to get anybody to hold me back. I need to be focused, and I don't think I can be focused with anybody."

At home, she loves to retire to her room with her two dogs — a Staffordshire named Bambi and a Jack Russell named Jackie — and watch TV. Her favorite shows: The Golden Girls and Nickelodeon's SpongeBob SquarePants ("The jokes are so funny"), and those on the Lifetime channel.

"Those movies are great," she says. "I'd love to get a small role in one of them someday."

But her favorite room in the house is her bathroom. "I have this vanity area," she says. "I'm always sitting there talking on the phone."

The cell phone is her constant companion. Mom says she's on it 12 hours a day. Williams doesn't offer much defense. "I'm always talking, taking care of business or casual talk."

She and Venus share the same home and, she says, are closer than ever. "She's my best friend."

She's also close to her mother and father/coach, who recently divorced. "For us, family is No. 1," she says. "People come and go and friends come and go but your family has to be there. That's why Venus and I get along so well. We play each other in the finals and in the end, for me, it's, OK, after this match I'm still going to be her sister. Ten years from now, it's not going to matter" who won.

For now, she's on top, living her dream. She's earned this. "Being on the ride I'm on now, I haven't really had the time to sit down and think what I've done. The best part is being on top."

And laughing.

Serendy Willick
Nov 8th, 2002, 12:53 PM
Serena defeated Anna Smash 6-2, 6-2! She will play Jelena Dokic in the quarters:bounce: GO SERENA!:bounce: :bounce:

Serendy Willick
Nov 9th, 2002, 06:11 PM
http://www.sanexwta.com/assets/story_image/SerenaPress110702.jpg

http://www.sanexwta.com/assets/story_image/SerenaHitBalls110702.jpg

Serendy Willick
Nov 10th, 2002, 07:23 PM
Serena got off to a slow start, but rebounded very nicely to beat Dokic 7-6(7-1), 6-0:bounce: :bounce: She will play Jennifer Capriati for a place in the finals:bounce: :bounce: Go Serena, win this!

King Aaron
Nov 11th, 2002, 12:52 PM
Serena beat Jen 2-6, 6-4, 6-4! :D

King Aaron
Nov 12th, 2002, 12:45 PM
Serena lost to Kim 5-7, 3-6 :sad:

Jeff
Nov 12th, 2002, 10:34 PM
I don't think we should cry about her loss.

Serena has had an amazing year...even though to her it was "descent.";) Really I think we should be proud! She has earned over $3.5 million...more than any female athlete has achieved in one year. And, despite being completely worn out, still gave her all throughout the match.

And as Serena says, it's actually a good thing she lost to Kim. It'll motivate her for next year the Australian Open. Look out, 2003, Serena is still fired up :D :D