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March 15, 1994

Jana Novotna


Q. Are you surprised by what happened today with Natalia?

JANA NOVOTNA: I am not really surprised. I know Natalia pretty well. I know that she is a tough player and if she has a good day she can beat anybody. I think it was kind of a difficult match, nervous match, a lot of service breaks and I guess we both felt like, you know, we want to get to the semis and all that, but, you know, I was not able to be decisive at the important moments and that is what hurt me, that I was not able to finish her off when there was the chance. Like at 6-5 in the first set, I served 2 set points and came back from 3-5. Then I am serving for the set, nothing really special happened. I sort of always, like, holding back. I don't know what the reason is for it. Maybe the way she plays because she plays so - every game or every point is different. One is high loop. The other is slice, and she can pass one hand. She is passing with both hands. She is a difficult player to play. But I still believed that I should be able to handle that because I have beaten Natalia before.

Q. When you say there were nerves, where did the nerves come from?

JANA NOVOTNA: I don't know. It just happens. I have been playing quite well and in the tournament, and somehow today I couldn't get going; couldn't get excited, and sort of like being on the top of it, and that sometimes happens. It is going to happen in the first round, going to happen any time. Just very difficult to deal with that. Not really nerves, but sort of like, you never really, start going and fighting and playing and all that.

Q. I seemed to notice after the first set tiebreaker she seemed to be walking to the side line --

JANA NOVOTNA: I don't know what was wrong, actually. I started to play a little better. I was much more aggressive in the beginning of the second set and then 3-Love I heard that she is complaining that she is sick, but I don't really know she was sick or she was not sick, or what was wrong with her. So she started to argue there and took some time off then she called the trainer and all that. That is all distracting for sure. But I should be able to do something with a 4 love lead. At that time when somebody starts to play for one shot, either because she was tired or sick or whatever, then that is very difficult. That is unpredictable. I had a good serve and she hits a winner. I do that and she misses it. You know, it is like you never know.

Q. I am wondering about your French Open preparation.

JANA NOVOTNA: Yes, it will be about the same like last year. I am planning to play two clay court tournaments before. It will be in Hamburg and Berlin and I will take a week off before the French Open and you know, try to do as I did last year, so that will be about the same.

Q. What about -- for the French Open program they are wondering about the top women players who they most hate to play?

JANA NOVOTNA: I don't have anybody like that. Really clay is very reasonable surface to play on with everybody, so, well I assume it is going to be difficult to play against somebody who can bring the ball 20 times over the net, but you know, the French clay is very fast. It is not slow as Argentina or Spain or anywhere else, so you know, you can still pretty much play your own game. So I don't really have a name who I would like to meet there at all.

Q. This was your first singles event in, I guess, since quite awhile?

JANA NOVOTNA: First outdoor.

Q. How are you doing physically?

JANA NOVOTNA: I am doing pretty well. I think I look fit and I feel fit, so I am doing quite well. I feel great.

Q. No more problems with the injury?

JANA NOVOTNA: I took care of that since then I got myself in good shape. Physically I feel perfect.

End of FastScripts....

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