View Full Version : Katarina Srebotnik in Dubai story/interview

Mar 4th, 2006, 03:51 PM
About a week ago I translated a shorter story about Katarina Srebotnik moving to Dubai for tax purposes (here: http://www.wtaworld.com/showthread.php?t=221820). This story is about that too, but it concentrates mainly on her expectations about the life there, her future etc. It was published in Jana magazine (the bad translation (including all the mistakes) from Slovenian here is mine).

Is mainly just a story about Katarina, her future plans etc, I translated it, since she is usually not the focus of many stories and maybe some people here who don't understand Slovenian want to read it (if someone wants to read it in Slovenial, tell me and I'll post a scan). No big controversies or slandering here, just a story centered around her own words.

I Had To Do This For Myself

»I started thinking about this step a year ago, when Slovenian Tax Law changed – it's such that it doesn't support top athletes,« says Katarina Srebotnik: »We athletes don't have forty years of career. We are bound by our health and results. Our career lasts from five to ten years and we have to earn enough to secure a life in this period. The state takes away 50 % of my earnings, so I decided to move.« This is not all: she pays this much if playing in America, with which Slovenia has a double taxation agreement. »I pay 30 % tax there right away and then 20 % in Slovenia. If the country doesn't have the agreement with Slovenia, I pay the tax to them and then another 50% to Slovenia. They write a lot about how much people are earning here, but nobody looks on it from the other side, how much they take from us and then we have to pay for all of the traveling costs, we are away for ten months a year, for coach… The things look different then.«

The Experiences Make You Stronger

The decision about moving wasn’t easy, she stresses. It will surely be even more difficult if she wasn’t able to adapt to living away from home. “When I went alone to competition in America at 14 – we had hard time collecting the money for the trip – I got terribly homesick on the first day already. I called my parents and cried that I wanted to go home. They comforted me and convinced me to stay.” It was worth it, since she won there. “Years and experience make you stronger and more independent, so it was easier to leave now. If I was studying at home r going to work every day it wouldn’t be as easy. When I finally decided, it was done for me.” She isn’t questioning her decision any more. She is aware she’ll hear opinions and comments. “For now everybody I heard from supports me and understands.” She had to do this, since it was for her own good. He parents helped a lot with her decision. “We talked a lot and I would have a hard time making this step without their support. Her father has already been to Dubai, when he escorted her to tournaments.

She was deciding between several countries, but in the end Dubai won, one reason being, she has several friends there who helped her with arranging everything that was needed for the move. Even thought this is a popular touristic city with many interesting sights, she hasn’t had much time to explore them. “I like discovering new places. I’m always glad when I go to a tournament in a place I haven’t visited before., to meet new people and experience new cultures.” There will be time for exploring Dubai. She did see the famous seven-star sail-shaped Burj Al Arab hotel. She has also seen their huge shopping centers, one has even a real ski-slope with everything that goes with it. “I’ve seen it, yes, but I swear on real skiing. But I have to admit it would be interesting to ski in the morning and then to spend the afternoon on the beach. I’ll be sure to try that when I find time.” Time is something she doesn’t have a lot of. Since she has moved to Dubai two months ago, she has been to the beach only one time, for just ten minutes. “I can say I only tasted what their see is like.” Her exotic new home is already attracting her friends. “Yes, I had offers from them to visit me,” she laughs. Sometimes she regrets not seeing them enough. “Being a tennis player sounds good on paper, but rare people understand how much you need to give up for it. I can’t remember when I was at the seaside in the summer for the last time, for example.” That is the time when the tennis season is in full swing. She can’t have many friends since she’s away from home so much. But she has a circle of people with whom she gets along well. One of them is her coach, Biljana Veselinović from Novi Sad, with whom she has been cooperating for two years. “We talk a lot, even about things that don’t concern tennis.”

I Might Not Come Back

As before her move to Dubai, her life will continue on the many tournaments around the world- “I’ll train in Dubai sometimes, sometimes in Novi Sad with my coach, in between I’ll visit my family in Slovenia. A home she will be spoiled with home cooking from her mother and grandmother, she misses that a lot abroad. She is not fond of foreign cooking and even in Dubai she intends to remain loyal to the food she knows from hoe. “When I was younger I tried out new dishes, but my stomach couldn’t handle them, so I like to only eat the food I know, especially when I’m competing.”

When we were talking she was just on her way to train in Novi Sad. “Before the tournament in Miami I would like to go to Dubai for a little while.” She is at the top of her career now, will she return to Slovenia once that is over? “Oh, I’m not thinking about this now. Lot of people ask me what I’ll do once finish my career.” Right now she’s doing well and thinking only about tennis. “Even after that I’ll stay in tennis circles. I don’t know what I’ll do, we’ll see about that…” she was secretive. “You never know how the life turns out, maybe I’ll meet someone down there, Dubai is a huge city with people from all over the globe, maybe I’ll start a family there and have hard time going back.”

Mar 4th, 2006, 03:56 PM
Kata :hug:

Mar 4th, 2006, 03:56 PM
thanks for sharing this :)

Mar 4th, 2006, 04:01 PM
thanks for time and effort and good luck Kata :)

Mar 4th, 2006, 04:40 PM
Thanks :)
Life is tough :(

Mar 4th, 2006, 04:41 PM
Kata :yeah: :)
But I still hope she comes back one day :awww: :lol:

Mar 4th, 2006, 05:40 PM
thanks :hug:

Mar 5th, 2006, 06:54 PM
Thanks for posting this Maya. were there any photos with the article?

Mar 6th, 2006, 05:16 PM
Thanks for posting this Maya. were there any photos with the article?

Nothing new. Just a photo of Katarina pasted on a generic scenery of Dubai... well, it's a nice picture, so I'll post it anyway (photo: Reuters, Alenka Žavbi):


Mar 6th, 2006, 05:25 PM
That was a very good article.
Is Dubai like Monte Carlo, with no taxes?

Mar 6th, 2006, 05:44 PM
That was a very good article.
Is Dubai like Monte Carlo, with no taxes?

I think it's either very very low or even 0% (maybe depending on wether you're a citizen or just a rezident?). I watched a show where they spoke about it a while ago. Maybe someone who knows more about it can clear this up.

Mar 6th, 2006, 06:16 PM
Great article, wonderful stuff, thanx. :)