March 12, 2004
INDIAN WELLS, CALIFORNIA
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. You were struggling the whole match, yet you were close to winning. Explain what happened today.
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: I mean, it's just a tennis match. I mean, I'm proud that I give everything I had. And, yes, I was not playing my best today. But I was pleased with myself that I kept fighting till the end. It almost paid off. There were a couple of points that turned the match around in the tiebreak in the third set. That made the difference. I think Marissa played a good match. You know, I just kept fighting, and it was a very close match today.
Q. Were you okay out there? You had the trainer.
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: Yeah, I had some stomach problems. I don't know. I think maybe I drunk a little too much or haven't eaten the right thing before the match. I was, you know, very hot out there. I had some problems at the end of the second set. But, you know, I was really glad that I got through that one. Then, you know, I just kept fighting until the end.
Q. Although it's just a tennis match, how are you feeling after this? How are you taking it?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: Just like a tennis match. I mean, there are still many things I have to work on. I just have to move on and forget about it as soon as I can and look forward for the next tournament.
Q. It appeared to be a sloppy match on your part.
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: I wouldn't say sloppy match. I haven't played for a couple of weeks. It's always hard, you know, to come back and play your first match, especially against somebody that has already played pretty much here before. So I was expecting a tough match, and it was. You know, I didn't play as well as I did in the practice, but still I think it was a good match.
Q. How are things going being back with Nigel?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: I think it's great. You know, I think it was good for both us to take a little bit of break, but I'm excited to be working with him again and looking forward for our work together in the future. And hopefully we will get -- we both will get where we want to be.
Q. You rang him, didn't you? You went to Australia with somebody else.
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: Yes, I went to Australia with Harold Solomon, who is also a very experienced guy. It just sort of didn't work the way I wanted to. And I felt like -- I took a little bit of a break after tournament in Paris, thought about things. I felt like, you know, last year was a very tough one for me, but, you know, I still thought that I have a great team around me, and I didn't want to change anything about it. I wanted to get back with the people I worked with.
Q. You had a good 2002, not a good 2003. Is this a very important year to show which player you are?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: Yeah, definitely I'm looking forward for this year. Last year was a very tough one. But I think I have learned a lot, and at the end the make me a lot stronger, not only as a player but as a person, too. Showed me that there are many more important things in life than tennis. You know, it showed me that this is really what I want to do, even though the times were very tough for me. But, you know, I still love playing tennis, and I'm really glad to be here.
Q. So how do you dedicate your focus to this year? What are you doing special?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: I just have to keep working hard, as I always did. And now I think it's just a matter of playing as much as I can. You know, I'm really glad that I'm healthy and not having any injuries at the moment. So I just have to, you know, keep working hard and try to do my best in the matches, and hopefully the results will come.
Q. Was it a question of being a bit rusty out there?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: I haven't played for a couple of weeks. It's always tough, you know, to get back, especially when you lay against somebody that has already played a few matches. I still felt like I had a great week of preparation here, felt like I was hitting the ball well in the practice. Just didn't come out as well as I wanted to during the match.
Q. You're playing doubles here?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: Yes, today.
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: With Barbara Schett.
Q. Many players when they come to a site where they've had great success as you did here a couple years ago feel all kinds of positive vibrations. Did you feel those?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: Definitely I feel something very special about this place anytime I come here. As I said, I had a really wonderful week here so far. It's just a shame I lost first round. But as I said, that's tennis. You just have to deal with it and move on. But for sure there is something very special about it, this place. I love being here and I always have a great time here.
Q. Did you feel there was a turning point in the tiebreaker?
DANIELA HANTUCHOVA: I sort of feel like the point I had for 3-All, the easy backhand, I was going to go for an angle, I missed. I think that was one of the key points. But otherwise, you know, I was still all the time down in the breaker. So I was sort of always behind, just trying to find my way to get back. But, you know, I kept fighting until the last point. And I thought she played a good tiebreak in the third set.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.