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July 5, 2001

Jennifer Capriati


MODERATOR: Good afternoon, everyone. Jennifer for you.

Q. What was the turning point in the match for you, do you think?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I don't know where it really turned. Maybe after she called the trainer, you know, she came out swinging. Before that, I was doing well in the second set and still playing my game. But I could tell from the beginning of that that she was starting to pick it up. Then all of a sudden, you know, a few games there after late in the second set, you know, she just was on her game, I mean, hitting everything well, not making any mistakes. There was not much that I could do.

Q. It was surprising because you were playing so well.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, I started to make more mistakes. I think definitely she just made a complete turnaround. You know, it was like a different player than from the beginning out there. She was just getting everything back. It started that way. Then I was just making the mistakes, so I backed off a little bit. I think that let her get into the match, and she got more confidence. I think she was just going for it, like all or nothing, and she was just on.

Q. Of course, this is a Grand Slam, much bigger than Berlin. If you go back to Berlin, can you compare or contrast the way she played there with the way she played today?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I think she played much better today, for sure. I mean, it's a different surface, different match totally. Maybe we both weren't playing our best, I mean, because it's not a Grand Slam. I don't know. I can't really compare it.

Q. Was her backhand that lethal in Berlin as it was today?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah, I think she's always had the good backhand. I mean, I think today just it wasn't only her backhand, it was everything that she was just playing well: her forehand and her serves. She was hitting good serves, so...

Q. Is there extra disappointment coming so close to having gotten the third leg of the Grand Slam, having it come to an end like this?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No, not really, because everyone was making the big deal out of the Grand Slam but me, you know. I'm pretty happy with the way the year has gone so far. I mean, it's hard to win one Grand Slam. So I'm pretty happy. It's not a disappointment at all. It would have been nice, but... Oh, well.

Q. The way she played today, is she the one to win this Grand Slam, do you think?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I think she has a good chance if she plays like that today. Again, I have to see who she's playing.

Q. Does it matter the way she's playing now?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I think, of course, it matters. Even though me, Lindsay and Venus all have pretty much similar games, you never know who could be maybe more consistent or do something better than I did today, so...

Q. How do you feel you played today?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I thought I played well. I mean, I came out playing great. Maybe I thought it was going to be too easy. Maybe I just lost my concentration there. I just let up. She was starting to get balls back. The whole set and a half, I was just blowing her off the court there - pretty much in the first set. I wasn't doing that anymore. I was starting to get impatient, you know, thinking to myself , trying to do the same thing instead of realising, well, she's just obviously going for it because she's in the semifinals, she's got nothing to lose.

Q. Are you surprised about what happened today, about her game?


Q. Yes.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No. I mean, actually in Berlin when I played her, I was up also in the first set. I won the first set quite easily, and she started playing better. You know, maybe she's that type of player that just plays better when she's behind. I mean, I'm not surprised. I know she's a good player.

Q. Don't you think you rushed a little bit too much in the beginning of the third set after you lost the second set? You were some kind of impatient, running.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I just said that before like that I maybe got a little bit impatient, was going for it too much, yeah, because I was winning so easily before that. Maybe that's why I got frustrated there.

Q. I'm saying at the end of the second set, you then lost the first game of the first set in one minute, one double-fault, three mistakes.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah. Maybe I was mad that I lost -- or couldn't believe I lost the second set, so...

Q. How has Wimbledon changed since you came here in '90, '91? How is it different this year at Wimbledon compared to back then?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Oh, well, everything's different. Look at the facilities, they've totally changed. The atmosphere has totally changed. It's just a lot. More young players now. I'm not the young player, so...

Q. How is it for you emotionally? How do you feel about Wimbledon now compared to how you were feeling then?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: It's a different feeling. I enjoyed it then when I was a kid, and I'm enjoying it now as being older.

Q. Do you take great pride in the example that you've said during this Grand Slam run, even though the Grand Slam part is over, you're still sort of the feel-good story of this year's tennis tour?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Do I feel good about it?

Q. Do you take great pride in the example that you've set, the way you've turned things around for you personally and professionally?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah, but it's mostly for myself. I was already feeling pride. I was already pleased with myself even before winning these Grand Slams. So now it's more for myself. You know, nothing that I had to prove to anybody. I'm really happy about it. Yeah, I mean, there is a certain pride, of course.

Q. How much are you hampered at this point by your knee injury, ankle injury?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No, I didn't feel -- I think they're fine.

Q. You said that everybody else is making a big deal about the Grand Slam. Now that you've lost, do you feel a sense of pressure has been relieved, that you event won't have to answer questions about it all the time?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Maybe, yeah. Probably.

Q. With everything that's happened, is it easier now to take a loss in a semifinal at Wimbledon than it was when you first did it?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: A loss is a loss, no matter where, when, you know. It feels the same, of course. When you lose, you know, you feel disappointed. But it helps that you lost to somebody who played well, and who won. I mean, definitely I didn't lose it; she had to play well to beat me. It was the semifinals of a Grand Slam, so I'm not too disappointed.

Q. Is it more accurate to say that you really weren't feeling much pressure? It seems like throughout the Grand Slam, the comeback, you haven't really seemed to feel all that much pressure. Is that true?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: That's true. Well, when I'm like watching the highlights show and everybody's commentating who is going to win, I didn't hear once that I was the favourite to win. It was always everybody else. I knew it wasn't like I was expected to win, so I don't feel pressure.

Q. Is one of the pitfalls of playing fast when another player picks it up and starts to turn it around, that you can kind of rush also into errors, and it's harder to stop and take a break, kind of regroup?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: You mean, because usually that's the way I play, is fast?

Q. Right.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Uhm, I guess maybe it's easier to get into that pattern and to really rush, because I play fast anyways. But I definitely improved on that. It doesn't happen too often anymore where I just rush too much. So, you know, usually when it happens, it's just a special occasion that it happened.

Q. Given that you were here when you were a kid, and you're now 25, have you ever thought about when your game will be in its prime? Is it now? Have you ever thought your game could peak maybe in three years' time?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I think now is definitely the time where it's peaking, or it's starting to peak. Who knows, I don't know how long it's going to last. I mean, this is the best that I've played in a long time - probably ever. So, you know, it's funny. I was such an early starter, "early prodigy," whatever, but really I feel like a late-bloomer, you know (smiling).

Q. Out of this tournament, you've had some great wins, but how important was it to have that one day with Steven in the mixed doubles?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, that's the highlight of this whole tournament. I mean, that will probably stand out the most than just losing here in the semifinals. Hopefully there will be more chances, yeah.

Q. You knew pretty well the Belgian players because you beat Clijsters in the Roland Garros final, then you played Henin. How could you compare both players?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I don't know. It's hard to say. I haven't played them enough times, both of them, to really make a comparison. I think they're just totally different players. I mean, they're both really good in their own ways, in their own different styles. It's really hard to say.

Q. You said a loss is a loss, a disappointment is a disappointment. Do you feel with everything that you've been through, that you're better able to cope with disappointment now than you used to be some time ago?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah. I mean, I just put it all in perspective, that it's really not a big deal to lose a tennis match. There's a lot worse things that could happen. I think we've all seen that as an example with Corina, too. Definitely, that's just part of my growing up, my maturity, what I've come to realise. You know, I've had a lot more losses in different ways than this tennis match.

Q. Was the success of this year as much fun as maybe you once dreamed it might be when you were a kid, just pure fun?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah. I mean, the actual just feeling of winning the Grand Slams, I mean, it was everything that I thought it would be and dreamed of. Of course, it happened in a little bit later time, in a different way, sort of like a real comeback way. But, you know, the actual just winning is what I dreamed of.

Q. How would you compare Henin's game with other teenage finalists?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: With other teenage what?

Q. Finalists, people to reach the finals at a similar age. How do you rate her game?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, I don't know - how old is Kim? She's about the same age?

Q. Yes.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I don't think there's going to be too many more 18-year-olds or even younger than that that are just going to be reaching the finals of Grand Slams.

Q. I meant in the past.


Q. Yes, with other people of her age who have reached the final.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, obviously you've got to be pretty good to reach the finals, you've got to have some talent, know how to play tennis. Just because the games are different doesn't mean one's better than the other. It's just completely different, but all good.

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