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September 2, 1998

Jana Novotna

U.S. OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP, Flushing Meadows, New York

Q. Talk about the crowd.

JANA NOVOTNA: You know, what, I think that when I go out there I do not worry about too much about the crowd. I am sure that in the beginning of the match, during the match, everybody was cheering me on which was very pleasant, of course. I love to play when the crowd is behind me. But, of course, when the match got a little closer and she made some good points, they wanted to see more tennis so it was pretty natural that they started to cheer her on. But when I am out there I really don't worry about these things. I am enjoying myself and played a good match today so nothing I can do about that.

Q. Two days ago Venus Williams went on court refusing to wear the WTA patch logo. They asked her: Please, put it on. It is part of the rules, you have to do so. She still refused to do it. I wonder if you have any view on that kind of behavior.

JANA NOVOTNA: Well, I really don't know what to say. This is the first actually I hear about it and, yeah, I was kind of surprised when I saw her yesterday night, last night on TV that she didn't wear the patch because in the past she used to wear that. But I really don't know what to say about it. I have no comment today whatsoever. If this is her choice, if they are -- look, the rules are made for everybody. For everybody it's the same, so I don't see a reason why she shouldn't wear the patches, everybody else does. I really don't know what else to say about it.

Q. Do you think it is a good rule?

JANA NOVOTNA: Well, I think that is the rule that was made -- I am not saying that it is a good rule or a bad rule. I think that was the rule that was made in the beginning of the relationship when we started to work with COREL, and nobody really thought about if it is a good rule or bad rule. Simply this is how it was supposed to be and this is how it is.

Q. How much of a difference have you noticed in the support you have gotten since you have won?

JANA NOVOTNA: Well, I think it is pretty enormous. Different -- especially playing anywhere else than here, I have got enormous support and it has been just wonderful. I always said that the New York crowd is a little bit different. They are very pro-American and very much pro-underdogs, so I am not expecting the New York crowd to be like hugely behind me, but otherwise the support around the world is really great.

Q. Are you pleased with your match today? Talk a little bit about what went on.

JANA NOVOTNA: I think it was a pretty reasonable match. I thought I played well in the first set. Lost my concentration a little bit in the beginning of the second set. That made it a little bit more complicated for myself and -- but, you know, happy with the performance. I am looking forward to have a day off tomorrow. Play some doubles and then just concentrate for the next matches.

Q. How do you handle the -- is it difficult for most people emotionally to play doubles and singles in a Grand Slam for two weeks. It could be as much as 12 matches --

JANA NOVOTNA: I don't think it is that difficult emotionally. I think that now me and Martina are the best doubles team in the world and you have to realize that most of the matches we really don't have any problems. I mean, simply we go out there and we do our job well and we are winning quite easily, so, it is not like that we are spending hours on the court from the beginning of the tournament. But I think physically it is very demanding, especially when you get to the later rounds of the tournament and then simply you have to play -- simply you don't have a day off in between or you have to play two matches at the same day; then it gets really demanding. But, I have been doing this since I am very young and I somewhat got used to it and even though it is physically demanding, I always feel that the doubles always helped my singles, so, that is why I continue to play.

End of FastScripts....

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