She looks amazing, and facially actually looks much younger and fresher vs. 10 years ago when really she was still in the midst of her depression.
Bumping because I just finished reading her book and felt so gutted for her, but also wondering if she’s planning a proper singles comeback off the back of this fitness move, and some of the drills she has been putting on Instagram? She’s too old for a proper comeback of course, but I could see her playing a few ITFs next year to test the waters, and I don’t really see her playing doubles , TBH.
Also, now that I'm here I should probably post a few musings about the book itself:
- The first half was a very compelling read, and as a WTA nerd it was great to follow the timeline of her ascent to the tour when the game was at its hey-day, and which still feels iconic in its own way. The second half of the book and towards the end - after all the pictures - kind of loses momentum (a bit like her career), and I almost didn't finish it.
- How she went from such astonishing physical and mental abuse from her father, into the arms of another domineering boyfriend, and then into the chaos of the Bikic brothers felt completely tragic. Whether or not her father fucked her up so mentally at that point that she was simply drawn to said chaos is debatable, but no doubt very unlucky. Had she had a good network of people around her after she left her family in 2002 her career probably wouldn't have fell apart as much as it did, as she literally had nobody (or nothing since she was giving her father all of her cash, even after making a break away) after that point. Nobody on the tour protected her back then, and I wonder how different it would be today, if at all?
- I know people have said that Dokic probably wouldn't have been as good if her father didn't scare the living daylights out of her to play tennis, but TBH, I just think she wouldn't have had such notable success so young. She was always a natural talent, with excellent hand-eye coordination, hands and feel for the ball, and had she had the right amount of discipline without the crazy abuse then I still think she could have been a very successful pro player.
- Back to the top of WTA nerd fodder, I guess one thing that's disappointing about the book is that despite giving a huge run down of her key results throughout her career, she never really gives too much away about the matches themselves, or the characters on the tour. I guess that was the point (perhaps inadvertently) of the whole book - she was so caught up in the misery of her whole life at that time that she could never really consume the best moments of her career that we may have all expected, nor have even been award of the different dynamics happening on the tour at that time.
- It was definitely written from memory as there were a couple of statistical omissions - she references Capriati as the winner of RG 02, and referenced Davenport as the dominant player of 00/01. But again, same the point above, I think this is also referencing the face that she was quite disconnected with everything happening around her at that time.
- I actually hadn't realised that the Sprem/Borna Bikic relationship had happened so soon, and had played such a key part of Dokic's continued depression in the mid-00s. B. Bikic sounds like a completely vile and horrible human being, and despite the rose coloured glasses for T. Bikic throughout the book (and still today since they're together) I can't help but feel as though both were taking advantage of her during the first couple of years of their relationship.
It's a pity that it's too late for her to make a proper comeback on tour, as I still think she deserved a proper farewell, but she seems much, much happier these days, and she's still one of the most memorable players of the last 20 years.