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March 7, 2001

Alexandra Stevenson


MODERATOR: Questions for Alexandra.

Q. You seemed to have problems with your feet during that match. What was your difficulty there?


Q. Did you have blisters?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: No. Just the bottom of my feet. It's called sesamoiditis. It's like tendonitis, except in your feet. They just started to hurt, so I had to get them taped.

Q. How long have you had that problem?


Q. What can you do for it besides stay off your feet?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Nothing (laughter). Ice.

Q. Is it just something that kind of comes and goes or gets worse? I know you're not a doctor.

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: It gets better when I'm on grass, obviously, like it doesn't hurt. Clay is a little better. It's hard on the hard courts because you pound. But you just have to play through it.

Q. Where exactly on the foot is it?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Right there (indicating the ball of her foot).

Q. That match kind of got away from you. Do you think it was a combination of your play at that time and her play, or how did you see it?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: I think that I rushed too much. I gave it away. I should have held my serve. If I hold my serve, I win the match. Just have to go back and serve buckets of balls.

Q. Where do you feel you are at this point with your tennis?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, I think I've improved since last year. I just need to know which time to come into the net, and just to be patient, keep the ball in play a couple more times before I move forward. I have to not rush. I think that I see the court a little better now. I'm learning how to play. It's getting better.

Q. Who are you working with these days, and how is it going?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Right now, I'm with my mom and my old hitting coach from when I was 15, his name is Andrea, he's from Rome. He used to hit every day with me after school. So he's traveling with me again now. He's back to my roots.

Q. What is his last name?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Bonfigli, B-o-n-f-i-g-l-i.

Q. You're still living in Florida?


Q. Have you thought about returning here, speaking of coming back to your roots? Have you ever thought about coming back to San Diego?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Sometimes. I mean, I go back. I went back before I came here. It's really tough to find practice, the rain, driving. Right now I'm happy where I am. Sarasota is really pretty. It's always sunny. It's just easier to practice. But you never know when I could come back to California. I'll always be a California girl. No matter what, in ten years, I'm moving back here.

Q. Since your big run at Wimbledon, you haven't had as much success as many people thought you would have. I know you're interested in entertaining, singing and dancing. Have you ever thought of giving up tennis?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: That's kind of a dumb question (laughter). If I thought of giving up tennis, I wouldn't be here. I think after Wimbledon, I was young, I just came out, I played really well. It wasn't a fluke like lots of people like to write. But it was just a time where I broke through. You look at a lot of young people, you look at Andre, he had ups and downs till he was 22, and he finally won Wimbledon. The last year and a half, I've had to get used to traveling, playing these girls, just finding my game. I mean, lots of people start early. They mature early, like Hingis and all the girls that are young, my age. Obviously, I'm a late-bloomer. I'm not worried. I have lots of time. There's no time limit. Although I do plan to entertain when I retire from tennis, not quit.

Q. How difficult do you think that will be? You'll be starting that career late.

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, look at Julia Roberts. She's how old? 35. She's hot.

Q. She's been around for a lot of years.

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Since she was 20. She started getting roles in movies just two years ago, except Pretty Woman. After that, she did kind of not-so-hot movies. I mean, I think it just depends on the person. Whatever you do, if you're good, you're going to break through sometime. You just have to keep working hard.

Q. What kind of entertaining are you going to do?


Q. Yes.

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, I want to act. I want to take singing lessons. But then I like to go on TV and broadcast. You never know what I'm going to do. I'm taking college classes right now. It just depends.

Q. Where are you doing that?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: University of Colorado at Denver. It's online.

Q. What kind of classes?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Right now I'm taking an art history class. This summer, for the summer season, I'm going to take English, and probably I don't know what else. I have to take two classes, though. I just started off with one to get used to it.

Q. How hard is that, not having a teacher?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: It's hard because you read the book. There's all this stuff about art that you don't know, that I never knew, like the shading, the coloring. You read about it, then you want to ask the teacher questions, but you can't. You kind of have to understand it yourself. We have online discussion, so that helps. My papers that I've written, he writes feedback. I've gotten four As, four papers. Proud of that. But he writes feedback. You e-mail back and forth. So for art history, it's a little easier. I think maybe a math class could be tough. I might have to get a tutor. I'm going to try to avoid taking math.

Q. Do you have to go there at all? Some online you have to physically show up for like a weekend.

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: For my degree, I want to be in theater arts or film, so I think the first two years I can get the core of courses out of the way. I would have to wait till I'm done with tennis to go actually on a campus, because you can't take theater classes online. You have to like actually act.

Q. Do you think it kind of hurts at all not having a full-time coach like you once did?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: I think last year has been a little tough, up and down. I guess it does. Like after Pete Fisher left, I haven't had like one stable person - if that's the right word. I have my mom. At least I have her. Hopefully, everything will work out.

Q. Do you communicate with him at all?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: I wrote him a letter. Actually, my mother and I wrote him a letter. I didn't write him the whole letter. He wrote back. He's getting out in May, so that's going to be a little strange. I kind of feel bad for him, and I kind -- I mean, the guy's been gone for three years, so he's had it tough. I mean, you think I've had it tough.

Q. Are you going to get back with him?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: No. I mean, I'll always remain friends with him because he was my coach for ten years. He was a big part of my life. I mean, there's always going to be a connection. But he's not the kind -- like I grew up, and you can't go back to someone. It's like when you go to high school and you graduate, you can't just go back to high school again. You kind of go on with your life.

Q. How disappointing was losing this match for you, especially after that very trying final game where you had four game points?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: It was very disappointing because the match was mine, and I let it go. The girl played like it was a Grand Slam. She played really well. She didn't deserve to win, though. If I would have held my serve and not made the shots I messed up on -- a couple volleys, approaches -- it would have been a different story. I'll just have to learn from this match and take it to next week.

Q. How much did your foot affect you in that third set?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: Well, I mean, it's going to affect someone because it hurts. But I'm not going to say I lost the match because of my foot.

Q. Was it affecting you more in the third set than the first or the second?

ALEXANDRA STEVENSON: The first set it didn't hurt, so that was good. The end of the second and the third set, it hurt. When you're out there, you just play through the pain. You just have to play through it.

End of FastScripts....

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