home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


September 8, 1999

Monica Seles

Flushing Meadows, New York

WTA: Questions for Monica.

Q. How do you explain the sudden change in the third set after having won the second set?

MONICA SELES: I lost the second set. I was probably frustrated with what happened in the second set, after coming back from 4-Love. I think probably Serena raised her level in the third set and I dropped quite a few levels. I wasn't getting up to the ball as much and moving as well as I did in the first set.

Q. Why do you think that is?

MONICA SELES: I don't know. I mean, there are probably a couple of factors that lead up to it. You know, there are no excuses. She's just the better player today.

Q. You've obviously seen Serena over her career. Do you see a great improvement, development? Is she pretty much the same player as when she first started?

MONICA SELES: That's hard to say because the last time I played Serena was the Lipton. It was a much more one-sided match at that point. She's definitely playing some great tennis. I mean, obviously she had a fantastic summer at the LA tournament and getting to the semis is great. I mean, I think both semifinal matches should be really terrific.

Q. How intimidating are Venus and Serena? They're in opposite brackets; there are some differences in their games. What is the common denominator there and how intimidating are they as players?

MONICA SELES: They're obviously very good players. They're physically very strong. They both have great serves. Serena was serving a lot of 115s there. Not a lot of girls can serve like that. They're playing very well. Put them up with Lindsay and Hingis who are playing some really good tennis right now.

Q. Do you look at the radar clock?

MONICA SELES: I do sometimes, yeah. There were a couple times I looked because she was just really serving so well down the T.

Q. Do you ever feel these girls are just running away from you now?

MONICA SELES: I don't know. We'll just have to see. I don't know.

Q. What does it say about women's tennis that it's so strong that in the quarterfinals you've got seven or eight names of players who could be in the finals, as well?

MONICA SELES: Yeah, definitely. We saw that today with Mary. She was unlucky against Lindsay a little bit there. But that's just great. I mean, probably I'd say the top four girls right now (inaudible) bit above. Even if it's a tight match, they'll win it. But there are probably four or five girls that could beat them or upset them, however you phrase it, on any given day. That can change obviously in the future.

Q. This is your ninth US Open. Is this Open a little bit different with Steffi and Novotna announcing retirement?

MONICA SELES: Did she announce retirement? I had no idea.

Q. Is there a different feel to The Open?

MONICA SELES: I don't know. I mean, when I come into the locker room, I have my group of people, my friends. That hasn't changed over the years. I just had a friend of mine retire. I was more kind of sad about that one. No. I mean, no.

Q. What type of hold (inaudible)?

MONICA SELES: She's physically a lot stronger than I am and gets back a lot more balls than I do, and her reach is much better.

Q. In the first game of the third set, she hit a lob that you didn't react to. Are those changes of pace coming from a player that hits as hard as she does tough to respond to?

MONICA SELES: Not so much. That really I don't think was the case today, in that specific time. It was something else. But, no, huh-uh.

Q. People really still remember you in your early years, when you had a real innocence, specifically in terms of the US Open, you used to come into the interview room and you were wide-eyed and excited about being at the sideline of an NFL game or shopping for hats at Barney's. How has Monica Seles changed?

MONICA SELES: I still do that. You guys just don't ask me about it (laughter). It's normal. When you're a youngster, everybody writes about you. My time was there. Now it's Venus and Serena and Martina's time. It's just normal. Five years from now, they'll have to deal with the other ones. There are going to be younger ones whose time will be at that point. My life really hasn't changed in terms of that. In terms of tennis, it's definitely a lot tougher, but I've still been hanging in there, in the Top 5. If I want to move up, I sure have to make some adjustments. You know, that will be up to me.

Q. After Fed Cup, do you think you'll have a real energy and desire to go to the gym and weight room?

MONICA SELES: I go to Japan the same night from Fed Cup, and I play six weeks in a row. It's kind of a hard one because I missed three tournaments, hurting my ranking. You definitely have to do that, there's no question. I know that. I just have to see if I want to do it or not.

Q. What are those adjustments that you have to make?

MONICA SELES: I think it's obvious. I have my strokes and everything is there, it's just physically I can't cover the court as well.

Q. Has your desire changed at all to be No. 1? Is that still a driving force in your life?

MONICA SELES: I personally never had the desire to be No. 1. I never woke up my whole life in the morning thinking, "I want to be No. 1." It was really that I love to play tennis. Maybe as a child, everything comes differently, I don't know. Then once you win a Grand Slam, you realize how good it feels, then you want to win more Grand Slams. If I would speak of a desire, that would be it. But it's not like a daily desire or anything like that.

Q. When you can't cover the court like you know you're capable of doing, does it make you feel angry about it, helpless?

MONICA SELES: I have my own battles with that. I have to figure that out in my own brain. Hopefully I'll do that. I think you have to overcome different things in your life. You know, I've overcome certain things and certain things I haven't, so.

Q. At Wimbledon you were asked something to the effect of, Is your career at a crossroads? You were really reflective. You said, "I don't know." Is it sort of in the same place now?

MONICA SELES: I don't think about it. I mean, being No. 4 in the world, I'm pretty happy (laughter). The world is pretty big. Maybe if I would be ranked something, I don't know. But being No. 4, I don't really think about that right now, not at all.

Q. As strong as women's tennis is right now, are you slightly amazed that you still don't have a Tour sponsor?

MONICA SELES: Being on the Tour committee, yeah, for sure. You know, hopefully it won't be a running joke.

Q. What is happening now?

MONICA SELES: We just had some meetings here. I don't know. I mean -- I don't know. I'll just leave it at that.

Q. Do you sense that it might change in the near future? Really you're just up in the air?

MONICA SELES: I really don't know because the players on that committee, I represent the top players, the news we get is really not in details. We just know yes or no. We're all hopeful. I think it's a tough one I guess for different reasons, but also I feel it shouldn't be as tough as it is right now.

Q. When you look at the US Open, you say, "Look who we have."

MONICA SELES: You can't compare. I have a lot of friends who don't even know what tennis is, and they're now watching women's tennis or reading about it. The only really person right now in men's tennis, if you ask someone outside, they know Andre really because of how well he's done. No question, I mean, women's tennis at every tournament literally - except maybe the French, but that was on par because Steffi also won with Andre - women have gotten more coverage, better matches. The men's tournament you almost kind of know who is going to win, which maybe women's tournaments were ten years ago. We all complained about that. Right now, you look at the US Open semifinals, and the finals, it's just a terrific product out there.

Q. What you say is exactly correct. So what are you told that they say? What is the reason why?

MONICA SELES: We haven't been told that. That's a good question, why we can't find them. The reason they tell us on the committee is they're trying, and they haven't been successful are the exact words.

Q. I'm asking, have there been potential sponsors who have said, "Maybe not because of X, Y or Z"?

MONICA SELES: I do know one of them, what was presented to us, was I guess tennis is a worldwide product, and some parts of their company didn't want to get involved in women's tennis. Another one was that they have to spend, I don't know how much, but a lot on advertisement, and they didn't want to do that commitment. But we never really get very specific reports.

Q. Is Advantage looking for a sponsor?

MONICA SELES: Last I know, it was IMG, then it went to the WTA. I don't know. I know IMG has been trying very hard. Again, I know they allowed -- not allowed, but WTA also owned their own from what I heard from our CEO, Bart, that we're doing the search on our own, too. It's September, and hopefully we'll have somebody.

Q. Do you find it remarkable that two sisters are now in the semifinals of a Slam? Did you feel before it was just a matter of time with respect to Venus and Serena?

MONICA SELES: Oh, definitely. I mean, the same thing five years ago when I returned on the Tour about Lindsay. You would feel in a few years' time she would be a top player. As a player, when you play somebody, you kind of sense that. Definitely Serena and Venus are up there. I mean, they have such an advantage to have each other just in terms of company, practice, pushing each other, that I don't think it can get better than that.

Q. Will it be fun to go to Fed Cup and be in a team context?

MONICA SELES: I enjoy it very much in Ancona. I'm very happy about the site. Obviously when we played Fed Cup matches in the States, the attendance has been really poor. I think with the lineup we have now and at Stanford, it's going to be full. Personally it's embarrassing when you go to Spain and there's 7,000 people cheering against you. You come to the States in the finals and there are 500 people there. It just makes you feel really weird. I'm very happy we'll finally have a full stadium.

Q. Can you imagine the kind of fan emotions and songs in Palo Alto that were in Spain last year?

MONICA SELES: Whatever happens, it's so hard, it's different. Spanish, they celebrate things very differently than Americans. We all I think are going to Japan, except I think Serena is going to Luxembourg. We really can't stay out too late. It would be really nice. We all made a promise to Billie that we would like to bring back the Fed Cup, especially with what happened with the men's Davis Cup. It's just a terrific chance for us.

End of FastScripts….

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297