August 30, 1999
U.S. OPEN, Flushing Meadows, New York City
Q. Mary Joe, you're off to another good start here at the U.S. Open, the third set was
your strongest. You really seemed to want to close that out. Of course I ran into Tony in
the parking lot, and he said that's why she played so well.
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I think I got momentum going, I got some confidence after winning
the second set. It helped me that I got off to a good lead in the third. I think I broke
in the second or third game and I got a little bit more confidence.
Q. The health, it's always a question mark with you.
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Yeah.
Q. How healthy are you these days?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Well, I've been struggling with my wrist for a little while. It's
kind of been haunting me for the last couple weeks and I'm struggling a little bit, trying
to get through it and work through soreness and stuff. It's getting better. It's just
difficult. These courts are pretty fast so I'm having a tough time with the racquet,
hitting the ball. But besides that, everything else is okay.
Q. You made another person happy other than Tony with your marriage to come next
spring. Monica Seles is really enjoying doubles with you. What do you like playing with
Monica about most?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: She's great. She's a lot of fun to play with. She's very funny on
the court. Also you learn how intense she is, how focused she can be. No matter what the
score is, she's always there, she always wants to win that next point. You definitely
learn a lot from her and she's one of my good friends so it's fun to play with her.
Q. How hard is it to stay focused these days with another activity coming into your
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I'm pretty focused on my tennis still even though the wedding stuff
coming along. I got my mom and sister working on it. It's kind of in the background right
now. Right now the U.S. Open is at hand, trying to get through each match at a time and
see how far I can go.
Q. So, Monica's funny, huh?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: She's very funny.
Q. How about a couple funny stories?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Oh, I can't share any of the funny stories (laughter) .
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I can't remember. She's just very great. She's just so down to
earth and, you know, you just say stuff out there. You don't expect Monica Seles to say
what she's saying.
Q. So, for example, you're walking back to serve, she's walking back with you, wants to
know where you're going, right, left. Does she ever say something like really off-the-wall
as you go back to serve?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I'm sure she does. It's hard for me to just pinpoint one thing that
she says. But, like I said, I mean I know her really well so it's fun to play with her.
Q. Is a date set for the wedding?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Yeah.
Q. What is it?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: April 8th.
Q. And the location of this wedding?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: It's up in Miami Beach, Miami Beach.
Q. Is there a specific spot?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: St. Patrick's.
Q. Oh, St. Patrick's church. And how big is this wedding going to be?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I don't know yet. We're working on that right now.
Q. Are we going to be able to come in and photograph?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I doubt it (laughter.)
Q. April 8th, that's right after Ericsson, right?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Right after Ericsson.
Q. So you won't be going to Hilton Head?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: No. Actually, it's a week off. The next week.
Q. Does this signal possibly a bit of a wind-down in your career next year?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: It might be. I'm kind of taking it, you know, a month at a time and
Billie Jean King a few years ago gave me great advice. She said, "Listen, you play
each week and then you get through a season and you always evaluate where you are, how you
are feeling health-wise, number one. It's silly to say, 'Oh, I'm going to play five more
years or two more years when at the end of each season is really when you know how you
feel.'" I'm going to play to the end of this year, see how it all goes, how my wrist
is, and we'll take it from there. I'm not setting a date or saying I don't know.
Q. There have been a few players that went on playing considerably Ros Nideffer was one
of them, Liz Smiley?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: There's been a few.
Q. Have you talked to any of the players, just a chitchat about how they handle their
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: No.
Q. Is there anybody else out there now that's married?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Anybody else that's married? On the tour still? Christine Kunze.
That's right, she's married. Corina's getting married in November. Arantxa is getting
married next July. Lisa Horn's getting married next year, too.
Q. Marrying the journalist from Barcelona?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Yeah.
WTA: Love is in the air on the Tour.
Q. A lot of guys seem to be able to do well. Is there any reason why women can't
continue playing? A lot of guys --
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: The obvious is women want to have kids eventually. You can't do
that when you're 45, so I think that's what happens. You know. Female instincts kick in.
The maternal instincts.
Q. Who's next on the draw sheet for you?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I don't know.
Q. I don't know either.
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I have no idea, I have to check it out.
Q. How are you feeling?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: I'm okay.
Q. The usuals, right?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: My wrist is sore. But getting through it.
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