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Old Jun 16th, 2005, 05:55 PM   #46
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Kuznetsova comes down to earth
By Piers Newbery



Svetlana Kuznetsova
Svetlana Kuznetsova profile
Svetlana Kuznetsova admits she found it dificult to come back down to earth after her surprise win at last year's US Open.

The Russian, who turns 20 during Wimbledon, capped a magnificent 2005 with victory over Elena Dementieva at Flushing Meadows.

And while Kuznetsova has gone on to firmly establish herself in the world's top 10, she has yet to hit those heights again in 2006.

"It's not difficult to carry pressure but after such success it's difficult to become normal again," she told BBC Sport.

"It's difficult to find a balance but I just needed some time to get it back.

"I think more players want to beat me. When you're a junior on the tour and you start playing it's easier to get up to the top.

"You've got to work very hard to stay there."


It's not my knees that hurt, it's my butt
Svetlana Kuznetsova
One of Kuznetsova's many highlights last year was her victory on grass at Eastbourne, but it was followed by a first-round exit at Wimbledon.

"I didn't expect to do so well at Eastbourne and I didn't expect to do so badly at Wimbledon, so it was a weird time," she said.

It was particularly disappointing as Kuznetsova's aggressive game is suited to faster surfaces.

"My game definitely changes on grass because I want to win the points quicker," she said.

"On clay you just put on lots of spin and the ball jumps up. It's very hard to make a winner, but here it's really easy.

"You just have to bend your knees and focus on every ball. If you lose just one point, you can lose the game. If they serve well, it's difficult."

And it's not just her style of play that is affected on grass.

Asked whether she can feel the switch from clay in her knees, Kuznetsova said: "It's not my knees that hurt, it's my butt.

"But you get used to it."
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Old Jun 16th, 2005, 05:56 PM   #47
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5. Svetlana Kuznetsova



Svetlana Kuznetsova
Born: 27/6/85
Nationality: Russian
Seeded: 5
World ranking: 5
Wimbledon best:
Quarter-finals (2003)
Recent record:
2004: 1st round
2003: Quarter-finals
2002: N/A

The Russian has followed up her breakthrough season with another steady campaign in 2005.

Kuznetsova claimed her first Grand Slam title at the 2004 US Open and climbed into the world's top five for the first time.

The Russian proved her grittiness at Flushing Meadows, beating Lindsay Davenport and defending champion Justine Henin-Hardenne before downing Elena Dementieva in the final.

She has continued to slowly improve this season, reaching the quarter-finals of the Australian Open for the first time.

At Roland Garros, she matched her best French Open performance before bowing out in the fourth round to Henin-Hardenne.

A new doubles partnership with Australian Alicia Molik this season has added another dimension to Kuznetsova's game.

The pair claimed the Australian Open doubles crown and went on to add a second title in Miami.

But with Molik pulling out of Wimbledon through injury, Kuznetsova will want to progress individually.

The Russian reached the last eight in 2003 but fell in the first round to qualifier Virginie Razzano last year.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2005, 02:33 PM   #48
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Wimbledon round 2 interview -


Svetlana KuznetsovaS. Kuznetsova - Day 3
Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Q. You've played with Sania before in the Juniors circuit?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, I didn't.

Q. As a junior in India?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, I never been to India.

Q. Okay. Were you surprised at the way things turned out today?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: The thing is, I played her in Dubai this year and she had good match. She played well in India ‑‑ oh, sorry, in Dubai. I didn't do so well.

Today, I mean, I just ‑‑ it wasn't my day at all. You know, as professional player, I ask myself to go through, to play through it, you know. I couldn't ‑‑ I didn't play at all. I couldn't do anything. I was just ‑‑ I couldn't move. I was so tense that my nerves just get me today. I just couldn't think properly, you know.

But I was there, you know. I was doing as it were going today. Next match, well, Sania, she is good player, but, I mean, there is big difference between us I think. She has great future. She has very good shots. But, I mean, if I play my game, I should have win much easier.

But of all conditions today, I just didn't do anything. I am very upset of the game I played, but I am very happy to go through.

And I understand it's a Grand Slam and I wanted to win so much. Nerves get me, because I was not moving and just didn't do anything. But my serve helped me out, so I'm very happy to get this match through.

Q. Had you ever been on Centre Court before?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, it was first time on Centre Court.

Q. Were you really nervous about that?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Yeah, of course. I mean, everything, you know. All pressure was on me, it was nothing on her. She was ‑‑ she had lower rank. She had nothing to lose.

I mean, I am here. I gotta win these matches. I am playing in big arena, on Centre Court. I guess they put my match because they were expecting me to play well, but I'm very upset I didn't do well. But hopefully next time I'll do better.

I mean, just very happy to get it through, but really upset with my game.

Q. You said you struggled, but how much was because of how much she pushed you? She pushed you all the way, didn't she?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Well, she was hitting good shots, but because I was letting her. I just didn't hit the ball at all. My game is to hit my forehand, is to go for my shots. I was doing all different today. I was serving. When I serve well, I wasn't expecting her to receive well, and she was doing it very well. She was keeping me back in baseline. I just was hitting ‑‑ I was trying to hit my backhands harder than my forehands. This is not ‑‑ this is not my game, you know.

She was playing well because I've been letting her go. I just was tense. I didn't know what to do. I pushed the ball up and she just hit it as hard as she could. This is her game. This is the way she play, and not my game. It was my worst against her best, and this is like it was.

But just, I don't know. Something came in my mind and I had to do serve and volley last game. This really helped me out.

Q. What do you plan to do to get over these problems in the next game that you face?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I guess I wouldn't have it. I cannot imagine to have every match like this because it's not possible, I hope, in this world, you know.

But I just will go and fight back again. I just want to win each match so bad, and I just want to play better, you know. I played much better last matches. I played much better than this one today. Just very happy because I stayed there and won this match.

Q. Do you enjoy playing on grass?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I didn't enjoy. You know, my goal now this season is like, "I did very well last season and I want to enjoy playing." I start like, you know, when you get on the court, you like not thinking like get tense, get nervous. It was today, it was just enjoying.

During the match, I was like, "You are not enjoying this." I was thinking, "But what you want to enjoy if you are so tense you just cannot do two steps to the side?"

I mean, I was looking like maybe a duck on the court today because I just ‑‑ I mean, I was silly, even embarrassed for my game because I just can't imagine how I could play that way.

Q. How much do you think it was the Centre Court versus being just at Wimbledon or just today with nerves?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Maybe like 30% of all my nerves. Maybe 30, 40.

But the thing is, I want to do so well. And wanting this, it's make me go so nervous, you know. But now it's looks like I'm saying that I play so bad and it's looks like I'm saying that Sania is not playing well. Yeah, she does play well, but I just expected much more game of me, you know, from my side.

I was very surprised when I saw last night's schedule and I was playing on the Centre Court. I was like, "Hell, no, I can't imagine this," you know. I know it was tough match because especially some player you never beat before, and I lost to her in Dubai. I know I didn't play well, you know, but still it's puts pressure on you. It just wasn't going. It was not my day, but I still happy to get it.

Q. At the US Open you played under the bright lights.

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Yeah.

Q. How is this different?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: You know, is just different. It's completely different. It's grass court. There is hard court. Hard court is my best ‑‑ best, I guess, best...

Q. Surface.

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: ...surface. I just catch up my game there, you know. It was like match to match I was playing, playing, and not thinking after now what is gonna be, after if I win, after if I win. Just in the final, I was like, "Wow, I'm in final." I played the best tennis I ever played, I guess, because I was hitting the ball as hard as I could. I was really doing my things I have to do: I served well, I played lots of forehand. I really was enjoying this. It was just a great atmosphere, great people, and just really good memories about it.

But also Wimbledon is so different, you know. It's completely like black and blue maybe, or white and black, you know, or red and black, whatever, you know. It's just different. It's like Sprite and Coke, you know. Doesn't matter that I love Sprite more than Coke, but it just completely different. But also I would love to do well here.

And also I just like Wimbledon because I know I can do different things here, you know. Maybe I can serve and volley more. I just have to push myself. I just have to see as moments as today, that it's help me out and it could help me out much more times. I will have to do it more.

Q. Is this your worst match that you've played for a while, do you feel?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: No, I don't think it's even like worst. Just nerves get me. I played ‑‑ I just don't know. I had really bad matches this year.

No, my worst match was in Rome, I think. But just this year was not going that well and I just ‑‑ you know, it's difficult because the years before I was coming like junior maybe and just had nothing to lose. Now, when you get to Top 10, maybe Top 5, you just have all the pressure on you. You have to understand. This takes you a while to understand it. You got to handle this pressure how you have to handle it. You have to learn it, you know.

Q. How do you cope with nerves now?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Well, trying to get matches, just try not to think of it. This is what I said. I'm trying to enjoy the tennis, you know. To play like players like Sania that play ‑‑ I mean, she was playing really well, but I was not doing the things what I'm doing well, so this is what gets me in problem.

I have to really concentrate on my things while I play.
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Old Jun 28th, 2005, 03:17 AM   #49
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S. Kuznetsova - Day 7
Monday, June 27, 2005



Q. I was just going to ask, I think you answered the same thing in Russian, but four Russian players in the quarterfinals. Do you think there's any reason for that, or how would you explain that?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I mean, what's the reason about last year of three Russian players won a Grand Slam each?

So, I mean, the reason is everybody play well and great competition between each other and just do well.

Q. Do you think there's any training methods or reason why so many Russian players have made it to the Top 10?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I mean, this question, we should make a poster so everybody knows (smiling).

No, I mean, because we compete between each other so much, and since we are young we have not good conditions and it's so tough to get through, like, through this world to go higher, you know, to start traveling and everything because it's so hard with the sponsors. And since you do this, you just become so strong a person, player and mentality.

Q. You need a strong mentality to break through?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Yeah, yeah, because nobody will give you nothing for free in Russia, and you have to do the work for it.

Q. You think maybe some of the other countries, they're not as kind of mentally tough?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I mean, sometimes people, like they are starting to play tennis, no, but like, "It's okay, he has only 10 years old and he has all the time in the life." This is not like this. You have to play tennis (indiscernible), you have to practice a lot. Sometimes people think that kids shouldn't do this, but it's different in Russia.

Q. Are you, yourself and the others, role models there for more youngsters to play tennis in Russia?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Yeah, I hope so. I hope so. I know that people, they are trying to open more clubs in different city. Because now the most important city is Moscow, so everything is in Moscow and they have very good level there. But other cities are not so good, so I know that people, they are trying to do something.

Q. Are the Russian players close as friends? Do you travel with one another?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: I mean, some of them, but it's very hard to be because we have so big competition between us. So this is why. Competition makes you grow another level, you know. You just fight till the end and you want to do better and you want to be best in your country and you just want to do good, you know.

Q. How do you assess the chances of the four of you here?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Everybody has different, you know ‑‑ lots of chances because everybody is different. If you get to quarterfinals, you can go higher. This is just ‑‑ all depend on yourself and how much you believe, how strong you want it.

Q. Do you think Petrova can beat Sharapova?

SVETLANA KUZNETSOVA: Well, I have no idea, you know. It's between them and whatever they play like.

But I think ‑‑ I don't know. We'll see tomorrow.
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and good luck russians: dementieva, safina, kirilenko, sharapova, kuznetsova, bovina, zvonareva, dushevina.

also good luck to: azarenka, lucic, sprem, vakulenko, vaidisova, safarova, ivanovic, groenefeld, mirza, krajicek, kvitkova, larcher de brito, lisicki.
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Old Jun 28th, 2005, 02:38 PM   #50
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Old Jun 29th, 2005, 06:06 PM   #51
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Svetlana Kuznetsova: The Anti-Star

She might be a Grand Slam champ, but Svetlana Kuznetsova barely rates a mention alongside the likes of Maria Sharapova. But as the young Russian tells GEORGES HOMSI, she'd rather be a nice person than a glamorous star.


Svetlana Kuznetsova knows she's not a star, and she doesn't care. She's just too easygoing to act like one. The 2004 US Open champion, one of three female Russian Grand Slam champions last year, claims rightly than her success didn't change her at all as a person. Maybe her anti-star behaviour is one of the reasons for a lack of media attention since her New York achievement. She knows she is not as glamorous as her countrywoman, Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova and she's fine with it.

When we met the US Open champion in Warsaw we couldn't help but appreciate her down to earth attitude. Although the interview was postponed three times, once we sat down she showed both interest and willingness to confide, although it appeared clear that, English not being her mother tongue, she couldn’t expand in her answers as much as she would have in Russian.


What's changed in your life since your victory at the US Open?
Oh, many things have changed. I put more pressure on myself because I want to show better tennis. I know the level I can reach, and I want to reach it all the time. I have more attention from the press, I have more fans, and I have more invitations to come for tournaments. But for me, the most important is to stay the same person I was before. And I think I have been able to do that.

Do you feel you put sometimes too much pressure on yourself, and that it prevents you from achieving the results you should be achieving?
I think that this victory took some pressure from me because no matter what I do until the end of my career, I have already won a major. On the other hand, it's true that I have more pressure, because I want to play better all the time, and I'm not always able to live up to my expectations.

Did this victory alter your career goals at all?
No I'm not trying to set too high goals for myself, because you never know what's going to happen. I'm just looking everyday at what I should be doing on the moment, and trying to do the best I can. My goals are short-term goals, not long-term, because so many things can happen. I am working hard, and doing the best I can, and then we'll see how far I get.

Before the 2005 US Open did you really believe in your chances of capturing a big one that early?
You know, before there was a gap between top players like Kim(Clijsters), Justine(Henin-Hardenne) or Serena(Willams) and the rest of us. But when I saw the others doing better, I thought, why not me? I knew I could do it too, because I could beat those players. It helped me to see (Anastasia)Myskina and (Maria)Sharapova win big ones before, but it also helped me to think 'now is the time to do it' rather than 'I can do it one day.'

Although you won the Bali title immediately afterwards, did you have some sort of letdown after achieving such a huge goal?
Yes, yes, because it's so hard to stay at the top all the time. After Bali I was so tired. My body was tired. It was hard. And it takes some time to get to understand all that was happening. But hopefully I'll get back to my best level again this year.

Do you feel other players started treating you differently after the Open?
Yes, yes, definitely. You get more respect from players. They just prepare better before playing me. they know better how I play. They're more afraid. But I'm not trying to think of it. I'm just coming to the court to do my best, and to beat anyone I play against on that day.

And tournament directors treat you better…
Yes, sure,, and I'm enjoying it. it's better to feel more comfortable when you are at a tournament. I think it's OK. The top players deserve this kind of special treatment.

For someone who won a Slam recently, do you feel you are getting enough attention from the Media?
I really don't think about that. My game is tennis, and the most important thing for me is to concentrate about what I have to do on the court. But sometimes you would like people to be a little bit different. Like when you open a newspaper, so many times you read negative things. And I think that you should see more different people in the newspapers, different personalities, rather than always the same. But still, I think it's improving.

Do you like attention?
(Hesitation) It depends which way. I like people supporting me from the stands. I like fans. I think I'm very open to the press. I love talking to the press, because I think it's fun. Many players don't but I do. It's easy for me.

Do you read a lot what is written about you?
It depends what. before I used to read it much more, but now it seems to be the same all the time. I see the article, and I sort of know in advance what they wrote. If I don't like what some journalist wrote, if he distorted my words, then I know that the next time I have to be more careful with this person. It doesn't go much further.

How would you describe your own personality?
It's difficult but… I'm kind of open to everybody because I'm friendly. And I feel bad when people think badly about me, because I really don't think I'm a bad person. And I tend to think a lot about what people will think if I do this or that. Maybe too much. I also love to listen to music. Music is part of me.

In Russia, techno music is very popular. Do you like it?
No, no, no. It's not my thing. I love R&B. I love pop music, Russian rock… at leat a couple of bands. I miss it so much. Listening to it changes my world. Actually I miss Russia very much when I'm away.

How do you look at the incredible success of Russian tennis? Are you proud of what your other fellow Russians are doing? Do you feel part of it?
Yes kind of. We are from the same country, and we represent our flag. So I think that all of us are very proud of representing Russia. But also, we compete against each other harder than we compete against anyone else. We have definitely more tension when we play each other.

So the tension must have been extremely high when you met Elena Dementieva in the US Open final…
Yes definitely. I don't really know what she felt, but as far as I'm concerned, if I lose to say Jennifer Capriati, well, it's OK. But if I lose to a Russian, it's different. And I'm pretty sure that all the other Russian players feel the same.

On the other hand, are you close to the other Russians off the court?
I think I am, but it varies according to the player. You cannot get along very well with everybody. Yet, I think we are closer because we have the same culture.

How do you feel about some getting more attention than others? Like Sharapova for example?
It is the way it is. You cannot expect things to be always perfect. You have to try to concentrate on your goals, and trying to achieve them. so I try not to think so much about it.

Your name was recently linked to a controversial "doping" matter after the Belgian Sports minister announced that you had taken a prohibited substance before an exhibition. Although you had done nothing wrong, since ephedrine is not prohibited outside official competitions, you must have been very upset of all the publicity surrounding this "affair"?
You know, things are clear in my mind. I had a strong cold, and since I had accepted to play this charity exhibition, I decided to respect my commitment. It could have been easy for me to pull out because I was a little sick, but I knew the organisers would be disappointed, so I came. And yes, I was taking ephedrine to relieve my cold, which I knew was allowed during the off-season. It is unfortunate that this made so much noise while nothing wrong was done.

You said at some stage that you intended to sue the minister in question, because he unjustly linked your name to doping.
Yes, but I'm not handling things myself. My job is to play and concentrate on my career, and that's what I intend to do. Yet, it is important not to let things like this happen again. I have not done anything wrong, and I was on the cover of newspapers for alleged doping. I think the way the minister announced things was wrong, and he never called me or said he was sorry. So something has to be done about it. I cannot let it be and forget about it.

I understand you're a fan of snowboarding. Tell us about it.
Yes, I love snowboarding. Every year I try to go snowboarding somewhere, in France or in Spain. I love to go to big mountains. Two years ago I drove to the French Alps. I love driving.

Is it not too risky as far as injuries are concerned?
I don't think so. I can snowboard quite well, and I don't fall down, so I don't consider it too risky. Also you cannot always keep thinking of the chances to get injured, because otherwise you don't do anything. You just have to be careful, and try to live your life the best way you can. I also like football(soccer). Not so much watching it, but I like to play. I think I might have been to the stadium to watch games about three times in my life. It's fun, but not nearly so much as playing.. I warm up with football. When we played Fed Cup last year, we were warming up with football. The other girls didn't like it so much, but I was having a ball.

Tell us how you spend your free time in Barcelona where you are now based most of the time.
I don't have so much free time there. I practice most of the time. And in fact I don't spend all that much time there. When I have some time, I have to visit doctors, dentists, and I have so many things of the kind to do. Yet, when I can, I go to the cinema with my friends or to dinner with my friends or my mum who is with me in Barcelona. We also stay and watch Russian TV a lot.

What are the main benefits of being based in Barcelona, and training the Spanish way?
You know, I'm so used to it, so I cannot imagine any different way of training. Five years is a long time. I started training there when I was thirteen or fourteen. I feel like I grew up there. But I can tell you it's tough. It's a lot of hours, lots of balls, lots of drills. Yes, lots of drills, this is I think the most important thing. now I benefit of more of a personalised training. They established a special program for me. it helps me concentrate, and keep focused.

Would you say you have a more Russian or more Spanish way of thinking?
I think both. And more also. When you travel the world, you try to get a feel of every place you go, and it reflects on your personality. It's normal. But the friendly side is more Spanish I would say because sometimes, Russian people are not so friendly. I mean we are friendly, but in a different way. Sometimes we can look a little rough. Mental strength maybe, I don't know. Kind of 'I want this, and I'm gonna have it this way! And now!' Spanish people are more like, 'OK, tomorrow.' You always will do it later. And this is not my way.

What are the cities that you prefer to visit?
I love Australia, and in particular Melbourne. The city is so lively, and the people relaxed and friendly. But of course my favorite city is St Petersburg, my hometown. I also love Paris, but it's very strange. I get strange feelings in Paris. I get nervous. They say it's the city of love, but I feel a certain tension out there that I don't like so much. It's no the people, it's the city and it's a strange feeling I have had ever since the first time I went there, when I was a junior. Yet, I still like it. I also like New York and Moscow. In Moscow everything is so fast. A little bit like a Russian New York. People there have their own rules, and they have to know their traditions. But to relax, ST Petersburg is better, because it's beautiful, and there is so much culture.


In a separate section about player superstitions, it mentions Sveta doesn't like anyone touching her racquets before a match.
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Old Jul 8th, 2005, 03:52 AM   #52
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good interview, good to see she's trying hard to stay the same nice person. i think winning a slam early in a career although it can put more pressure on a player to perform eg sharapova with the press giving her so much attention, sveta hasnt been getting that sort of attention and in the long run i think it will help her win slams much more easily. a mauresmo like career being one of the older players yet to win a slam and with the pressures of the media to win a slam its easier for a player if they already have one under their belt to win one and winning one so young sveta now has a couple of years to properly develop.
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also good luck to: azarenka, lucic, sprem, vakulenko, vaidisova, safarova, ivanovic, groenefeld, mirza, krajicek, kvitkova, larcher de brito, lisicki.
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Old Jul 15th, 2005, 03:19 PM   #53
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Sveta interviewed with Nastya, Lena D., Nadia, and Vera Z.

THE TOUR LIFE

What do you most like about being on the tour:

Petrova: "Changing plases all the time is very exciting, from seeing different cultures to eating different foods."
Dementieva: "Meeting so many interesing people around the world while at the same time working to win a tournament"
Myskina: "Really, nothing. Every year the tour gets tougher."

Whats the Hardest Part about Traveling?

Kuznetsova: "Its a double-edged sword because youre seeing the world but you are missing your freinds and family."
Zvonereva: "The flying is too much sometimes. Once i flew from Miami to Sydney for 14 straight hours. Or another time going consecutive weeks from New York to Moscow to Beijing to Moscow and Miami. Thats hard on your body."

Was there a moment or match early in your career that showed you had the goods to be a successful pro?

Dementieva: In 1999 we plaed the Fed CUp final, and I beat Venus. Even though our team lost 4-1 just to get that one win for Russia was very important to me."
Myskina: Palermo 1999, I made it out of the qualies and won the tournament. Then I quilifeid for the US OPEN."
Petrova: WInning the Fench Open juniors in 98'
Zvonereva: " In 2003 I beat Venus at ROLAND GARROS."

WHats your favorite city?

Zvonereva: "Beijings a lot like my hometown, Moscow-great hotels, great plase for an event. It was also fun in Beijing to go and this market and buy a fake rolex watch"
Kuznetsova: "Anywhere, so long as i dont have to be there more that two weeks:"
Petrova: Melbourne. Its so green and busy."
Myskina: Zurich. I love the mountains and the smaill cafes and the hot chocolate.
Dementieva: "Moscow"

What to your parents think about your careers?

Myskina: "Tennis was my fathers dream, he pushed me, and hes really happy"
Dementeiva: Tennis wasnt my decision. My mom made it for me. My parents always wanted me to play tennis."
Petrova: "Both my parents are atheletes so they know what it takes to be a pro"

When does being a pre seem most frustrating?

Petrova: "Packing. Youve got just a little time to fold all these clothes and youre tired and want to sleep."
Myskina: "Its one thing to play when youre rising up the ranks, but its another when people think you have to win"

CHILLING OUT

What do you do to relax on tour?

Zvonereva: " I watch movies on my DVD player and I also like to read books like War and Peace"
Dementieva: "You dont really have time to relax at a tournament, but when I have time, I like to go to the pool and read Dostoevsky or Nabokov."
Myskina: "Movies like Meet the Fockers or books like Lord of the Rings."
Petrova: "I always have a book with me, or play music, or play cards with my coach."

How do you relax away from the tour?

Kuznetsova: "Its fun to ride a snowbouard, or hang out with freinds, or watch a good comedy like Bruce Almighty."
Zvonereva: "Just go home to Moscow and sit in a restaurant with my freinds."
Myskina: "Mostly I like to be with my family. Otherwise , I could probably sleep all day."

Whats your favorite meal?

Petrova: "Suchi, anytime, anywhere."
Myskina: "Suchi, I love eel."
Dementieva: "Suchi"
Kuznetsova: "Suchi"
Zvonereva: "I eat everything. I like something different every day. In China, I love the Peking duck. In Russia, crepes with caviar."

How Many songs do you have on your Ipod?

Kuznetsova: "At least 2,000. Lots of R&B."
Zvonereva: "Nearly 3,000. Usher, 50 Cent, and Eminem are some of my favorites."
Myskina: "I dont have one. Kuznetsova, shes the one who knows how to make all that stuff work. "

What Movies and TV shows do you watch?

Petrova: "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch is very relaxing. Thers no meaning to it, just fun."
Dementieva: "I dont watch TV."
Myskina: "Friends, I like all of them. THey are all really funny."

WHo's going to play the movie of your life?

Petrova: "No one could play me."
Zvonereva: "Julia Roberts"
Dementeiva: "No ONe"

What Famouse people have you met?

Myskina: "Through Jennifer Capriati, I got to meet Matthew Perry. But im not really into that."
Zvonereva: "It was pretty cool to meet Boris Yeltsin when we won the Fed Cup. I want to meet Pultin."
Dementieva. "Ive met Yeltsin and Pultin, but im not trying to meet famous people. There's nothing special about them, they are normal people."

Whats your biggest fear?

Kuznetsova: "Snakes"
Petrova: "Turbulence on a plane, Ive had my share."
Myskina: "The future-finding myself after tennis."

Whats the coolest thing you own?

Dementieva: " My cactus collection."
Zvonereva: "My Nissan Primera. Its black, with tinted windows."
Petrova: "Ive got quite a big apartment in Moscow."
Myskina: "My black BMW 328."

BACK TO SCHOOL

What kind of student where you?

Kuznetsova: "Very well-behaved"
Myskina: "Oooohhh....well, the mormal one who missed a lot of lessons because of tennis."
Dementieva: "I was a good student until a started traveling more for tennis."
Petrova: "Until i started playing tennis at age 8, i was an exellent student."
Zvonereva: "Actually I was good. I love school."

What where your favorite subjects?

Dementieva: "Russian and french"
Kuznetsova: "Math"
Myskina: "I really liked learning how to write and speak in Russian."
Petrova: "Biology"
Zvonereva: "math"

Do you still think of going back to school and if so, what would you like to study?

Dementieva: "Yes. Id study sports management. I think I have learned a little bit about how that fielf works."
Zvonareva: "Id like to learn how to become a computer programmer."
Myskina: "It would be fun to go to a university and study something like design, or something with clothes and fashion."

It you werent a tennis player, what would you be?

Petrova: "A Doctor"
Myskina: "I Dont know, I dont know. Ive been playing tennis since I was 6. I really like who I am.
Kuznetsova: "An athlete in another sport-any sport."
Dementieva: "Doctor"

HANGING OUT

How do you stay friends when you travel so much?

Myskina: "Lots of time on the phone and sending text messages."
Petrova: "Its very hard. I ahave some great freinds back home who odnt play tennis. We email a lot, but when Im home, we try to spend lots of time together."
Zvonereva: "In a way its fun just to have freinds all over the world in different cities."

Have you made freinds on the tour?

Petrova: "Players are more business freinds that close freinds."
Myskina: "I hang out mostly with the Russians."
Dementieva: "Its very difficult to be freinds with somebody that you have to play against that day."

THE RUSSIAN EXPERIENCE

What is it like competing agaisnt others from your homeland?

Myskina: "Its tough. When I was the number one Russian, I had to prove myself all the time. Now Im not, so theres no pressure on me. Even more, friendships will last long than anyhing in tennis.
Dementieva: "Its more about the way you feel for this person, With Myskina we started to do things together and there are a lot of memories we can share together."
Kuznetsova: "Its very tough, but im motivated to play against someone from home."

Whats it like to be famous in Russia?

Myskina: "In the US there are these magazines and TV all the time with famous people going to the beach or eating. In Russia, its much more quiet."
Petrova: "Ive hardly ever had people walk up to me."
Zvonereva: "People dont watch sports that much in Russia, so only once in a while do people ask for autographs."

How much time do you spend at home?

Myskina: "Three to four months."
Dementieva: "Two Months"
Zvonereva: "Two Months"
Petrova: "Four Weeks"
Kuznetsova: "Two Weeks"

What do you think it is about Russians that make them so good right now?

Zvonereva: "Kournikova and Kafelnikov helped make tennis popular, so parents wanted kids to play becuase they thought kids could make money."
Petrova: "We all came out of the juniors and looked up to each other. We try to give everything we can to the sport."
Myskina: " We're tough and we practice hard."

WORD ASSOCIATION

AMERICA

Petrova: "Big Portions"
Zvonareva: "Boring"
Kuznetsova: "Lots of fast food"
Dementieva: "Hamburgers"
Myskina: "Far from home."

TENNIS

Petrova: "Lots of Sweat"
Zvonereva: "tennis ball"
Kuznetsova: "having fun"
Dementieva: Grand slam"
Myskina: "Number one"

ANNA K

Petrova: "long blond"
Zvonereva: " Anna the great"
Kuznetsova: "Famous"
Dementieva: "Kournikova"
Myskina: "Kournikova"

WIMBLEDON

Petrova: "Strawberries and cream"
Zvonereva: "Grass"
Kuznetsova: "My Birthday"
Dementieva: "Grass courts"
Myskina: "QUEEN"

TRAVELING

Petrova: "Lots of luggage."
Zvonereva: "Planes"
Kuznetsova: "Lots of Flights"
Dementieva: "Planes"
Myskina: "Tennis"

ROOM SERVICE

Petrova: "PAy TV"
Zvonereva: "Food"
Kuznetsova: "Tired"
Dementeiva: "Boring"
Myskina: "Cheeseburger"
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Old Jul 17th, 2005, 07:56 AM   #54
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it seems like sveta doesn't like staying anywhere for more than 2 weeks, including her home!!
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Old Jul 18th, 2005, 11:54 PM   #55
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Hahaha a telling comment from Myskina

What do you most like about being on the tour:
Myskina: "Really, nothing."

Some pretty cool interviews posted here, I like sveta more every time i read or see anything about her, what a legend!
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Old Jul 19th, 2005, 03:07 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DHfan
it seems like sveta doesn't like staying anywhere for more than 2 weeks, including her home!!
That's because she spends some time in Barcelona, and some in St. Petersburg.
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Old Aug 2nd, 2005, 02:33 PM   #57
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Despite her U.S. Open win, Kuznetsova remains a secret
By Jerry Magee
STAFF WRITER
August 2, 2005
CARLSBAD – Svetlana Kuznetsova has a secret. Some might say she is a secret, considering how little-known she is for a U.S. Open champion, but psst! Listen.
"I know three of the top Russians who are not so good," Kuznetsova said yesterday in her pleasantly fractured English. "They have some problems, but they are not complaining. They go and they play."
Come on, Svetlana, 'fess up. Who are they?
"I'm not going to say that," she protested. "Nobody knows. I'm not saying anything. This is only what I know; if I know only three, it could be more."
On the opening afternoon of the Acura Classic at the La Costa Resort and Spa, Kuznetsova was discussing how Russian women like herself are able to persevere in tennis while American women are much more, shall we say, fragile.
"We are very different; our mentality is different," said Kuznetsova, who is known for her candor. "We have different discipline."
Question for Kuznetsova: How often has she withdrawn from tournaments?
"Never!" she said. She pronounced the word with emphasis.
None of the Russians who by their numbers have turned the Acura into what could be called the Borscht Open could be more disciplined than Kuznetsova. Martina Navratilova, who is down to play doubles here this evening, said she sensed when she invited Kuznetsova, then 18, to band with her in doubles in 2003 that the Russian could become a Grand Slam champion.
"Absolutely," said Navratilova, another person of pronounced opinions. "What was there not to see in her? She was strong as a little bull and she was competitive and wanted to get better. She had all the goods; she had all the goods to be great.
"She kept coming; she wouldn't quit. With her coach, she would be out there for two hours, hitting one more shot, one more shot. She would be out there until she got it right. When you see somebody doing that, you know they are going to go far."
Kuznetsova has. From her home in St. Petersburg to Barcelona as a teenager as a means of realizing her tennis ambitions and ultimately on to the WTA Tour. She is a player who by her admission has her ups and downs, but she also has times when she can deliver winners in bursts, as she did in outplaying countrywoman Elena Dementieva 6-3, 7-5 in the 2004 Open final.
Kuznetsova's victory seemed to signal the arrival of a refreshing new presence in the women's game. After her victory, it seemed as if she couldn't stop talking during her news conference at the National Tennis Center, she was so delighted. She can speak in Russian, Spanish and English.
There were times when Kuznetsova doubted herself. "When you practice a lot, you're like, 'It's not going to work,' " she said. Her triumph in the Open should have caused her to set aside such thoughts, but her work ethic remains unchanged.
"I want to be, I want to play, I want to be good," she said.
She said since the Open she has been more consistent than she was a year ago, but she has had less positive results. Her last tournament victory was at Bali the week after the Open.
In the thinking that she played too much in 2004, she has cut back on her schedule, eliminating Fed Cup appearances. She also is working on doing more serve-and-volleying.
To Navratilova, the most difficult stroke in tennis is a volley struck while moving forward after serving. The recognition time being extremely brief, not many women can handle this shot, said Navratilova, who arguably could execute it better than any woman who has played tennis. Kuznetsova, Navratilova said, can do it.
Kuznetsova has a history of shoulder problems, but she won't dwell on them. "I am perfect," she said. "I feel I practiced pretty hard in Spain. The schedule is perfect. My shoulder is pretty much perfect. I'm excited about it."
At La Costa, she is the ranking seed in an event that doesn't have a No. 1 seed following Lindsay Davenport's withdrawal Sunday. Kuznetsova seems to find this amusing. When she was reminded of it, she threw her head back and laughed.
Rankings clearly mean nothing to her. It doesn't dismay her, either, that capturing the U.S. Open has brought her no great fame. Even in Spain, where she makes her home, she said she can move about and not be recognized.
"I'm really happy with that," she said. "I just don't feel I would like it if I went out and people would say, 'This is her!' " Svetlana Kuznetsova, the U.S. Open champion of whom too few people are aware.
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Old Aug 2nd, 2005, 04:30 PM   #58
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An Open Question

Kuznetsova won the U.S. Open at 19, but can she be more than a one-Slam wonder?

By Diane Pucin, Times Staff Writer


CARLSBAD — There were eight Americans in the main draw of the Acura Classic tennis tournament that began Monday at the La Costa resort. The youngest were a pair of 24-year-olds — Laura Granville and Abigail Spears. The highest-ranked was Lisa Raymond, who is No. 47 on the WTA computer list, is 31 and has probably left behind her prime years.

There were 11 Russians in the main draw. The top three seeded players in the tournament — defending U.S. Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, her opponent in the Open final, Elena Dementieva, and Nadia Petrova — are Russian. Six of the 11 are 20 or younger. They are, they think, the future of tennis. "Fans need to get used to seeing us," Dementieva said. "We are playing good."

Kuznetsova is good. She is solidly built, 5 feet 8 1/2 and 160 pounds. She hits a hard, flat groundstroke. When the ball whacks against her racket, the solid sound echoes through empty arenas or bounces off empty metal stands. For despite her Open victory last year under the bright stadium lights in New York, Kuznetsova walks unnoticed through the corridors of the Southern California resort of La Costa.

She hasn't won a tournament this year, though she is ranked fourth in the world. Although Martina Navratilova, Kuznetsova's former doubles partner, says the 20-year-old has the game and the mental strength to become something more than a one-Slam wonder, Kuznetsova sighs when she allows, "This year has been hard."

The daughter of a Russian cycling coach and a world-champion cyclist, Kuznetsova says it still sounds odd when she is introduced as the U.S. Open champion. "I don't always believe it," she said. "I think I have put so much pressure on myself to play so good, like I am the Open champion. And everybody plays good against me."

"Welcome to my world," said Navratilova, winner of 18 Grand Slam singles titles. "Other players will measure themselves by how they do against the U.S. Open champion. It becomes a great accomplishment to beat her. So you have to raise your own game."

Mary Pierce, seeded sixth here, said one of her toughest years on the tour came after the first of her two major wins, the 1996 Australian Open. "It changes your life," Pierce said. "The first year after was tough. I struggled with it."

When Kuznetsova beat an injured Lindsay Davenport, 1-6, 6-2, 6-4, in the semifinals and the serving-challenged Dementieva, 6-3, 7-5, in the U.S. Open final in September, "It was the greatest moment, holding up the trophy," she said. In her next tournament, a lower-level event in Bali, Kuznetsova beat Samantha Stosur, Angelique Widjaja, Petrova and Marlene Weingartner on the way to another championship.

Since then Kuznetsova has advanced to the finals of two smaller tournaments. This year she lost in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, to Maria Sharapova; in the fourth round of the French Open to eventual champion Justine Henin-Hardenne, 7-6 (6), 4-6, 7-5; and in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon to Davenport, 7-6 (1), 6-3.

"I have a Slam, nobody can take that away from me," Kuznetsova said.

"But I am proud this year because I have better consistency. I don't lose in the first round or second round of the big tournaments."

Navratilova said Kuznetsova could make another big move forward and challenge for more Grand Slam titles by coming to the net more often.

"The hardest shot in tennis is the first volley," Navratilova said. "But Svetlana has the ability to make that shot."

It is something she is working on, Kuznetsova said. She hopes to improve her serve. Most of all, she'd love to gain more confidence.

"I always want to play like a champion," she said. "I hope I do."
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Old Aug 2nd, 2005, 06:51 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldenlox
An Open Question

Kuznetsova won the U.S. Open at 19, but can she be more than a one-Slam wonder?

By Diane Pucin, Times Staff Writer


CARLSBAD — There were eight Americans in the main draw of the Acura Classic tennis tournament that began Monday at the La Costa resort. The youngest were a pair of 24-year-olds — Laura Granville and Abigail Spears. The highest-ranked was Lisa Raymond, who is No. 47 on the WTA computer list, is 31 and has probably left behind her prime years.

There were 11 Russians in the main draw. The top three seeded players in the tournament — defending U.S. Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, her opponent in the Open final, Elena Dementieva, and Nadia Petrova — are Russian. Six of the 11 are 20 or younger. They are, they think, the future of tennis. "Fans need to get used to seeing us," Dementieva said. "We are playing good."

Kuznetsova is good. She is solidly built, 5 feet 8 1/2 and 160 pounds. She hits a hard, flat groundstroke. When the ball whacks against her racket, the solid sound echoes through empty arenas or bounces off empty metal stands. For despite her Open victory last year under the bright stadium lights in New York, Kuznetsova walks unnoticed through the corridors of the Southern California resort of La Costa.

She hasn't won a tournament this year, though she is ranked fourth in the world. Although Martina Navratilova, Kuznetsova's former doubles partner, says the 20-year-old has the game and the mental strength to become something more than a one-Slam wonder, Kuznetsova sighs when she allows, "This year has been hard."

The daughter of a Russian cycling coach and a world-champion cyclist, Kuznetsova says it still sounds odd when she is introduced as the U.S. Open champion. "I don't always believe it," she said. "I think I have put so much pressure on myself to play so good, like I am the Open champion. And everybody plays good against me."

"Welcome to my world," said Navratilova, winner of 18 Grand Slam singles titles. "Other players will measure themselves by how they do against the U.S. Open champion. It becomes a great accomplishment to beat her. So you have to raise your own game."

Mary Pierce, seeded sixth here, said one of her toughest years on the tour came after the first of her two major wins, the 1996 Australian Open. "It changes your life," Pierce said. "The first year after was tough. I struggled with it."

When Kuznetsova beat an injured Lindsay Davenport, 1-6, 6-2, 6-4, in the semifinals and the serving-challenged Dementieva, 6-3, 7-5, in the U.S. Open final in September, "It was the greatest moment, holding up the trophy," she said. In her next tournament, a lower-level event in Bali, Kuznetsova beat Samantha Stosur, Angelique Widjaja, Petrova and Marlene Weingartner on the way to another championship.

Since then Kuznetsova has advanced to the finals of two smaller tournaments. This year she lost in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, to Maria Sharapova; in the fourth round of the French Open to eventual champion Justine Henin-Hardenne, 7-6 (6), 4-6, 7-5; and in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon to Davenport, 7-6 (1), 6-3.

"I have a Slam, nobody can take that away from me," Kuznetsova said.

"But I am proud this year because I have better consistency. I don't lose in the first round or second round of the big tournaments."

Navratilova said Kuznetsova could make another big move forward and challenge for more Grand Slam titles by coming to the net more often.

"The hardest shot in tennis is the first volley," Navratilova said. "But Svetlana has the ability to make that shot."

It is something she is working on, Kuznetsova said. She hopes to improve her serve. Most of all, she'd love to gain more confidence.

"I always want to play like a champion," she said. "I hope I do."
dont worry,sveti-baby,you are MY champion!! your biggest german fan!!
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Old Aug 29th, 2005, 02:18 PM   #60
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Defending champ Kuznetsova not center of attention at U.S. Open




Svetlana Kuznetsova can’t get respect.

She has been largely overlooked in the buildup to the U.S. Open, with most of the attention centered on Lindsay Davenport, Maria Sharapova and Kim Clijsters.

Kuznetsova is the defending champion. Yet her first-round match, against fellow Russian Ekaterina Bychkova this morning on the first day of the Open, isn’t even one of those featured on center court.

“There’s lots of good players to play on the center court here,” Kuznetsova said Sunday, shrugging. “I am playing. I think I will play there also (sometime). So I don’t mind.”

Kuznetsova may not be as glamorous as some of the other Russians, but her star power hasn’t been helped by her recent play. Though she’s ranked fifth in the world, she’s 27-14 in 20 tournaments this year, and is still looking for her first title.

She did make the quarterfinals at both the Australian Open and Wimbledon and lost to Justine Henin-Hardenne in the finals in Warsaw, Poland. But she hasn’t gotten past the third round since Wimbledon and was bothered by a back injury in her loss in Toronto two weeks ago.

“I think I’ve been going pretty fast … these few years,” she said. “This year I was not improving so much because I am already in the top 10 and it’s much harder to stay there and to go higher.

“Last year was a big breakthrough, and this year I couldn’t make it so good also. So I am expecting it still to be better.”

With her back healthy again, there’s no better place for her to make a run than the U.S. Open.
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