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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:48 AM   #1
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Serena says she is fit and ready to defend her title

http://au.news.yahoo.com//060114/21/xl96.html

Saturday January 14, 04:27 PM

Williams sisters ready for Open

Serena Williams says she is fit and ready to defend her title at the Australian Open tennis tournament, beginning in Melbourne on Monday.

Experts have questioned the preparation of the 13th seed saying she looks overweight.

Willams says she is well prepared for the tournament and people write her off at their own peril.

"Honestly I've never read any comments about my fitness, I don't read the papers I always look at the pictures, you know it just depends how the picture looks and that's about it," she said.

"I never read articles, I actually stopped reading articles about myself so I don't know what people say about me."

Meanwhile, reigning Wimbledon champion Venus Williams says she has high expectations for the Australian Open.

The 10th seed says her current world ranking is not indicative of her place in the sport.

While experts have questioned the fitness of her defending champion sister, Venus says there is no doubt about her own condition.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:49 AM   #2
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"I never read articles, I actually stopped reading articles about myself so I don't know what people say about me."

That's the way to do it Rena . It's clear she doesn't let other people faze her, it's all up to you Serena!
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:51 AM   #3
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Tell em' GRILFRIEND! You people on this Forum can stop talking trash now, because she doesn't read your sh*t!
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:52 AM   #4
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Don't underestimate me, warns Serena

January 14, 2006 - 4:08PM

Defending Australian Open champion Serena Williams has warned opponents to underestimate her fitness at their peril, declaring herself in ideal condition to retain her title.

Williams, whose ranking has slipped to No.13, largely because of knee and ankle problems which ruined the last half of her 2005 season, has been the subject of suggestions her shape and conditioning slipped away with it.

But Williams repeatedly proclaimed herself "absolutely" fit at a press conference today ahead of the Open, which starts Monday, and said she was happy for other players to doubt her.

"I like that, it would be like 'oh, she's not fit,' that's cool with me," Williams said.

"That's fine, because then people will be like 'okay, well she won't be able to run,' that's a great position to be in."

Asked how she rated her chances of successfully defending her Australian crown, Williams was just as emphatic.

"If I didn't like my chances of winning, I wouldn't be here," she said.

Williams said she did not read newspaper articles about herself, so had not been aware of the public speculation about her weight and fitness level.

But she did admit to checking out photographs of herself, including one recent unflattering shot, taken from behind while she was jogging.

"I saw one of me running. I was like 'wow, my hamstring muscle is that big?' I had no idea my muscle was like that, but that's about it," she said.

Williams said she had not studied her first round opponent, China's Li Na.

"I'm not sure. I think I might have played her, but it might not have been her," Williams said.

In fact, Williams and Na have never played each other.

Sister Venus Williams also declared herself fully fit, after also having had the last half of her 2005 season sabotaged by injury and illness, particularly a left knee injury, to leave her sitting at No.10 in the world.

"I just feel pretty confident that I'll improve on that number, for sure," she said

Venus said the Australian Open singles title was a prime remaining goal for her, as she chased the bold career ambition of winning every grand slam singles, doubles and mixed doubles title at least once.

She already has eight of those 12 trophies, with the Australian and French singles and Wimbledon and US Open mixed doubles titles missing from her resume.

"Obviously I have to win the singles here to kind of get it down to three titles (remaining)," she said.

World No.1 Lindsay Davenport, who lost to Serena Williams in last year's final, said she was excited by the depth of talent in this year's field, with all of the top 20 women players present and a large number of them genuine contenders.

"This is a great first step to really getting women's tennis back, getting everybody playing is the first step to really getting it back to a premier sport," she said.

"We've had a tough last couple years (with injuries), hopefully everyone can stay healthy now for all four slams."

No Australian men or women made it through the qualifying tournament, with the last hope Robert Smeets ousted by Frenchman Jean-Christophe Faurel 6-0 3-6 6-3 in the final round today.

It means there will be 13 Australians contesting singles, seven men and six women.

http://www.theage.com.au/news/tennis...118999813.html
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:53 AM   #5
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Experts? You'd think Serena was an experiment.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:55 AM   #6
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"Honestly I've never read any comments about my fitness, I don't read the papers I always look at the pictures, you know it just depends how the picture looks and that's about it," she said.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 04:59 AM   #7
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I always say: Never count Serena out. She is a big champion!
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:09 AM   #8
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Thanks for the article, but I don't think I've ever heard Serena (or any other player for that matter) say, "I'm totally not going to win this slam and am just wasting my time by coming." So I'll just chalk this up to the usual pre-slam player talk. I'll wait to see if she makes it past the 1st round to make any judgement.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:24 AM   #9
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......So quit taking shots at Serena! (Especially since she's getting to be a pretty slow moving target.)
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:28 AM   #10
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Dreamgoddess, you do have a point but I still find it encouraging to read Serena's posititve quotes

Guess we'll find out soon what everyone's form is like.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:41 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by And1bsk310
Tell em' GRILFRIEND! You people on this Forum can stop talking trash now, because she doesn't read your sh*t!

Unfortunately, obssesive Serena fans are and it gets on their nerves...

well, why not be like your idol, dnt read shit on these boards.....
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:46 AM   #12
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Well as Serena has confirmed there's no injury bothering her, this spells big trouble for the other girls!

There's nothing more intimidating than a determined Serena!
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:48 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by getright
Asked how she rated her chances of successfully defending her Australian crown,
Williams said she had not studied her first round opponent, China's Li Na.

"I'm not sure. I think I might have played her, but it might not have been her," Williams said.

In fact, Williams and Na have never played each other.
Maybe serena better worry about under-estimating her opponents before worrying about her opponents under-estimating her.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:53 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by tennisrox
Maybe serena better worry about under-estimating her opponents before worrying about her opponents under-estimating her.
Actually the article hints that Serena isn't worried about her opponents under-estimating her, she expects it considering this is in part why the article was written in the first place
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 05:56 AM   #15
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the harder she brawls... the harder she falls.....
seriously.... I like Serena but please, please don't get our hopes up...
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