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View Full Version : Alexandra Stevenson: "I still got 7-10 more years left in tennis"


spiceboy
Apr 4th, 2007, 01:40 PM
http://www.charleston.net/assets/webPages/departmental/news/OldStories.aspx?section=sports&NEWSID=136961&pubDate=4/1/2007


Stevenson still on the road back

BY JAMES BECK



Alexandra Stevenson hasn't been in the news much the last few years. You might even have forgotten about her.

She was a Wimbledon semifinalist in 1999, right out of high school and the Wimbledon qualifying tournament. That was the defining moment in a tennis career that hit a peak at No. 18 in the world rankings in 2002.

She's also the daughter of basketball great Dr. J (Julius Erving).

It might be time to remember this determined young woman. Stevenson has spent most of the last two weeks training with Fritz Nau and Ean Meyer at the Players Club in Mount Pleasant. She is on the rebound from a baseball pitcher-like shoulder injury she said she suffered four years ago and underwent surgery for in September of 2004.

The road back has been a long, especially tough one. She tried making a comeback in 2005, but had to retire twice during matches in qualifying tournaments due to severe pain in her service motion. She played in four WTA Tour main draws in 2006, but failed to win a match.

The shoulder wasn't ready then, she said. Stevenson now has given her shoulder the green light. She feels no pain when she unleashes her powerful serve.

She was hitting all-out Thursday at the Players Club. The bubbly, good-natured 26-year-old was especially happy this day, all smiles and feeling good about her game and health, and that troublesome right shoulder.

Nau, who first met Stevenson when he was a pro at Nick Bollettieri's academy in Florida, believes Stevenson's comeback hopes will be aided by her size, strength and athletic ability. At 6-1, 156 pounds, she is a big hitter who can pound balls without placing extra stress on her body.

Meyer has concentrated on Stevenson's movement in drills, but he was especially impressed with Stevenson's one-handed slice backhand. "She hits the slice backhand just like (Steffi) Graf. She doesn't just slice it, she knifes it," said Meyer, a former pro at Chris Evert's academy.

"My weakness a week ago was movement, but Ean has really helped me with that," Stevenson said.

As an example, she had lost badly to one of the male players in camp when she first arrived. "I got killed last week ... yesterday I beat him," she said.

Good news came for Stevenson Thursday night when the WTA Tour event at Amelia Island, Fla., awarded her a wild card into its qualifying tournament.

Stevenson and her manager/coach/mother, Samantha Stevenson, left for Amelia Island on Friday.

Stevenson arrived at the Players Club after suffering a first-round loss in the qualifying tournament for the Sony Ericsson Open in Key Biscayne, Fla. "After Key Biscayne, I felt I needed help," she said. That's when she placed a call to her old friend, Nau.

The Stevensons, who still reside in Los Angeles, plan to make the Players Club their home base as they travel by car across the South and East to challenger tournaments, and also as their home base in the future.

Stevenson hasn't given up on hopes to play in next weekend's qualifying event for the Family Circle Cup, although she has been unable to land a wild card.

She plans to show up at Family Circle Tennis Center, put her name on the list and wait. "Hopefully, someone will pull out and I'll get in."

Stevenson has played in five Family Circle Cups, reaching the round of 32 in 2001. She last played the event in 2004, losing in the first round to Nicole Pratt.

As a power hitter, clay isn't her best surface. That might be evident by her 1999 grass-court march through Wimbledon qualifying and then five main-draw matches before running into Lindsay Davenport in the semifinals.

But it's spring, and clay-court tennis is the order of the day. After the Family Circle Cup, the Stevensons will embark on a clay-court road trip for $75,000 challenger events in Dothan, Ala.; Sea Island, Ga.; Charlottesville, Va.; and the Orlando, Fla., area.

Alexandra quipped, "I'd love to play on hard courts, but there's no where to play on hard courts until the end of May. So I have to learn how to play on clay courts." That's one reason she was training at the Players Club.

Stevenson's goal is to get back in the top 100 before the end of the year. She is currently ranked No. 377 and hasn't won a main- draw match on the WTA Tour since 2004.

But there was a time when this young woman was the sensation of the tour. She had just graduated from high school with honors two weeks earlier and UCLA wanted her badly. She decided not to sign with UCLA until after going to Wimbledon. Of course, she never signed.

Stevenson didn't forsake a college degree, however. She is 12 hours away from receiving an online degree in arts and sociology from the University of Colorado. "I even made the dean's list," she boasted. "My mother wants me to go back for graduation."

After tennis, the multi-talented Stevenson wants to attend acting school and go into acting. Having been schooled in singing and dancing, she sang and danced in high school performances and has performed vocally at several events since.

"But I've still got 7-10 more years left in tennis," she emphasized.

Alexandra said she has never met her famous father and appears unaffected by questioning about Julius Erving. But when news of Erving being her father was revealed during her Wimbledon success, it was a little different. "Maybe back then, it was a distraction ... I was young," she said.

Stevenson has moved on. Now, she just wants to move back up the tennis rankings.

Craigy
Apr 4th, 2007, 01:41 PM
:eek:

V-MAC
Apr 4th, 2007, 01:43 PM
Alex being compared to Steffi Graf?!! :lol:

jamatthews
Apr 4th, 2007, 01:45 PM
Is it my imagination, or has there been alot of "I'm back" type articles for someone who hasn't been in the news much the last few years? :scratch: :shrug:

Dave.
Apr 4th, 2007, 01:55 PM
As much as I would love it to happen, I don't think she stands a chance to return to the top 20. I mean, she really has to be fully refreshed, perpared and confident to do anything. That Wimbledon SF in 1999 is the only time she has been beyond the 2nd round of a Grand Slam. Her career-high ranking of 18 came in 2002, but she lost in the first round of all the Slams that year. Her only WTA title came in doubles in Leipzig 2001 with Serena Williams. Seriously I don't think she has the game of a champion or the consistency to really make a good comeback. At least with Schultz-McCarthy or Lucic they have done a bit more to make you believe they can last.

geoepee
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:02 PM
She's training for the London 2012 Olympic games, by then she'll be one of America's top remaining players.....just kidding...

Well, it's good to hear that she's working on her movement....perhaps by May she'll be able to do some damage on hardcourts and grass. I still believe ;)

jazar
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:03 PM
7-10 years of mediocrity

égalité
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:06 PM
My grandma has 7-10 years of tennis left in her, too. Doesn't mean she'll be accomplishing anything outside of winning her weekly doubles matches :lol:

Maybe Stevenson should play with her. She might have a chance.

A'DAM
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:08 PM
Was this James Beck payed by her mother to write this :rolleyes: :lol: :help:

Martian KC
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:19 PM
As an example, she had lost badly to one of the male players in camp when she first arrived. "I got killed last week ... yesterday I beat him," she said.

Wow, he must really suck.

LoveFifteen
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:33 PM
7-10 more years of results posts about $30K challenger matches in St. Paul, Providence, and Reno! :scared:

tae04
Apr 4th, 2007, 02:35 PM
lol she needs to take a new route

eugreene2
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:06 PM
Interesting? I wonder if this is just natural athlete talk - you know the kind that always believe they're still good although everyone is telling them their career is over.

OR

Is she really puttin in the hardwork - super-fitness & wise coaching - to make a solid comeback?

tonythetiger
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:17 PM
I can't believe she's never met her father after all this time. That's really sad. Dr. J is my favorite ball player of all time and I can't believe he hasn't picked up the phone to set something up. I know he paid child support, but that doesn't take the place of being there. Wow!

MatchpointPRT
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:18 PM
:) at least she still believes.

griffin
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:33 PM
Is she really puttin in the hardwork - super-fitness & wise coaching - to make a solid comeback?


Even according to this article, she only started training with these guys two weeks ago.

She figured out her movement was a problem ONE week ago.

What do you think?

("reaching the round of 32 in 2001"? What a grandiose way to say she's only ever won one match there :lol: )

LefandePatty
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:40 PM
:bowdown:

Andy_
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:43 PM
Can't wait for Cam'ron Giles to read this... :p

griffin
Apr 4th, 2007, 03:51 PM
I can't believe she's never met her father after all this time. That's really sad. Dr. J is my favorite ball player of all time and I can't believe he hasn't picked up the phone to set something up. I know he paid child support, but that doesn't take the place of being there. Wow!

I seem to remember reading that Samantha and Alex themselves have refused contact, so I wouldn't lay it all on Dr. J.

CoryAnnAvants#1
Apr 4th, 2007, 04:17 PM
At least she's getting some coaching besides Mommy Dearest and will start hitting the challenger circuit...

I actually would prefer to see her just take the next two months off, work on her game, and get FIT. She is AWFUL on clay, and always has been a la Tamarine Tanasugarn. No amount of prep on clay will get her to win two matches in a row on it, even at a 25K.

Mother_Marjorie
Apr 4th, 2007, 04:39 PM
"My weakness a week ago was movement, but Ean has really helped me with that," Stevenson said.
Wow! What did she do to lose 20 pounds in one week?

Wannabeknowitall
Apr 4th, 2007, 04:44 PM
Wow! What did she do to lose 20 pounds in one week?

:lol:

Adal
Apr 4th, 2007, 04:46 PM
So she decided to waste another 7-10 years of her life? Hmm...

Paneru
Apr 4th, 2007, 04:56 PM
:) at least she still believes.

Exactly! :cool:

Lexy could snap out of this funk and
return to BIG TIME tennis. :hearts:

Very happy to hear that she is
working on her fitness.

Keep at it Lexy,
you'll get back! :D

Martian KC
Apr 4th, 2007, 04:59 PM
Exactly! :cool:

Lexy could snap out of this funk and
return to BIG TIME tennis. :hearts:

Very happy to hear that she is
working on her fitness.

Keep at it Lexy,
you'll get back! :D

LOLZ

tae04
Apr 4th, 2007, 05:31 PM
So she decided to waste another 7-10 years of her life? Hmm...

:lol:

dreamgoddess099
Apr 4th, 2007, 06:30 PM
I swear, you guys really need to stop with these April fool jokes. This one is just cruel.

auntie janie
Apr 4th, 2007, 06:34 PM
She figured out her movement was a problem ONE week ago.

Yeah, so it did take her almost a decade to figure that out. So what; after one week, now that pesky little issue is FIXED!
"My weakness a week ago was movement ..." Past tense, you see. C'est fini! There'll be no stopping Speedy Stevenson now! :cool:

Tennisation
Apr 4th, 2007, 07:15 PM
doubt it, her mother will go broke way before that 7 to 10 years will ever happen

Kunal
Apr 4th, 2007, 07:54 PM
come back soon

.Andrew.
Apr 4th, 2007, 07:56 PM
:eek:

Slumpsova
Apr 4th, 2007, 08:01 PM
whatever Alex.
7 years or 10 years, you can be Martina Nav of the Challengers for all i care :rolleyes:

auntie janie
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:12 PM
Alex has received a qualy wild card for San Diego.

Tenis Srbija
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:33 PM
Jelena Dokić, Mirjana Lučić...join the "I will be back" club Alex :yeah:
But I think she should either join "We suck, but we play, Brie and CO" club, or she should form "RET (retired in a match, not retard :p )" club... :)


But as someone said, at least she still has faith in herself. That's what I salute :worship:

Tenis Srbija
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:36 PM
doubt it, her mother will go broke way before that 7 to 10 years will ever happen
She plans to "make her disappear" in next 7 to 10 years :shrug: :cool:

Thanx4nothin
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:36 PM
7-10 years of mediocrity

:lol: :tape: :lol:

Lennval
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:51 PM
her words are stupid

DOUBLEFIST
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:58 PM
Well, credit to her for not giving up on herself, at least.

JAMESYBABY!
Jul 27th, 2007, 11:59 PM
ffs of couse she does she retires all the time

!<blocparty>!
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:16 AM
The road back has been a long, especially tough one. She tried making a comeback in 2005, but had to retire twice during matches in qualifying tournaments due to severe pain in her service motion. She played in four WTA Tour main draws in 2006, but failed to win a match.

The shoulder wasn't ready then, she said. Stevenson now has given her shoulder the green light. She feels no pain when she unleashes her powerful serve

:dead:

mirzalover
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:17 AM
I miss her but she sucks now

Josh.
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:19 AM
:spit:

cheo23
Jul 28th, 2007, 05:27 AM
Come on Alex!!!!!!!!!! GeT your Act togetheR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :hearts::hearts::hearts:

Mightymirza
Jul 28th, 2007, 05:30 AM
get ready to see a lot of retirements :o

Paneru
Jul 28th, 2007, 05:42 AM
Oh step off Sexy Lexy! :p

The Venus quote in my sig
applies to my Lexy as well! :cool:

"Well, I think that at the end of the day,
I don't care if you believe or anyone else
believes in here, because it's me. So believe
what you want to. There's always going to
be nay sayers. You may be one of them,
I don't know. Guess what, I don't care."

LucasArg
Jul 28th, 2007, 06:44 AM
You go girl!!! :rocker:

Mr_Molik
Jul 28th, 2007, 07:26 AM
:scared: about the male player who last to her

Jeff
Jul 28th, 2007, 07:49 AM
Sure she has 7-10 years in her. If you call losing first rounds or early qualifying rounds as a success, then any player could say the same.

PamShriverRockz
Jul 28th, 2007, 08:17 AM
:speakles:

7-10 years left of playing tennis in the park maybe ;)

InTheGloaming
Jul 28th, 2007, 09:59 AM
What doing? Serving the burgers at the snack booths?

auntie janie
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:18 PM
Oh step off Sexy Lexy! :p

The Venus quote in my sig
applies to my Lexy as well! :cool:

"Well, I think that at the end of the day,
I don't care if you believe or anyone else
believes in here, because it's me. So believe
what you want to. There's always going to
be nay sayers. You may be one of them,
I don't know. Guess what, I don't care."

It's a great quote, but come on; there are hell of a a lot more reasons to say "nay" to Alex than there could ever be for Vee. ;) Look at Alex's record over the past couple of years and you might end up saying nay, too.

Still, she's trying. She can't be lumped with Dokic or Lucic, because she doesn't just talk; she does enter challengers, she does get out there and play tournaments many, many weeks of the year. She's never going to be top-50 again, very probably not even top-150, but as people constantly say about Brie, if she enjoys getting out there and getting beat in round 1 or 2 week after week, well, good for her. Unlike Brie, at least Alex does win GAMES, and even some matches here and there.

jdyshrky
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:24 PM
Last week her movement was her weakness. Now after a week of training she's sorted. Tada!

Ben.
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:34 PM
as much as i can't see her doing anything spectacular in the next 7-10 years in tennis at the moment, i must give her credit for at least having a go.

CORIA01
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:34 PM
:lol:

Slutiana
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:54 PM
It's a great quote, but come on; there are hell of a a lot more reasons to say "nay" to Alex than there could ever be for Vee. ;) Look at Alex's record over the past couple of years and you might end up saying nay, too.



oh :help: :lol:

Paneru
Jul 28th, 2007, 12:58 PM
It's a great quote, but come on; there are hell of a a lot more reasons to say "nay" to Alex than there could ever be for Vee. ;) Look at Alex's record over the past couple of years and you might end up saying nay, too.

Still, she's trying. She can't be lumped with Dokic or Lucic, because she doesn't just talk; she does enter challengers, she does get out there and play tournaments many, many weeks of the year. She's never going to be top-50 again, very probably not even top-150, but as people constantly say about Brie, if she enjoys getting out there and getting beat in round 1 or 2 week after week, well, good for her. Unlike Brie, at least Alex does win GAMES, and even some matches here and there.

Regardless, the message is clear and
y'all can believe whatever you will
because it's them. ;) :kiss:

-sugi-
Jul 28th, 2007, 01:09 PM
:eek:

RenaSlam.
Jul 28th, 2007, 02:30 PM
7-10 more years left in tennis to suck ass.

CrossCourt~Rally
Jul 28th, 2007, 05:12 PM
The WTA WC Commitee must LOVE getting calls every week from her mom :lol: