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August 27, 1996

Jennifer Capriati


Q. Jennifer, a lot of shots you were hitting seemed to be a little off. You were hitting them hard, a little long, a little wide. How far off do you feel from your game? Do you feel like you were close.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Yeah. I feel like my game is just right there, just don't quite have the edge yet. I feel like it's close. Every match is just a great experience for me, win or lose. It's a good learning experience for me, just for my game.

Q. What did you learn today, Jennifer?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Just as far as like my game, you know, I need to learn how to keep more control of my shots, work the point more, play the point more. I guess that's the experience, again, just playing more matches. That's really it.

Q. Do you feel like you have to relearn everything that you did so well three, four years ago? Is it like you're starting all over again, learning how to win a close match like this.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Definitely. It's different. It's not as like automatic, for sure. I would like it to be. I think it's definitely true.

Q. After being away from the Slams for three years, what was it like just being here today and playing? What were your emotions?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I mean, it was great when I was out there. Just the whole energy, just the crowd, just felt really great. It was like, "Yeah, you know, this is what I miss." I miss the competitiveness. Even though my shots were off, I still felt solid. It still felt great playing out there. My game, I still felt like I played good. Just to be able to do that, with the crowd and everything, you know, just couldn't pull it out.

Q. What kind of expectations did you have coming in here? Seems like from the way you feel now, you knew maybe you -- what did you expect?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I didn't put any expectations on myself, any pressure to win every match or whatever. I am disappointed because I would have liked to get through a few matches at least. You know, I just didn't put any expectations on myself really.

Q. Before you started this come back, did you have to think mentally, it's not going to be a sprint, it's not going to be immediately, it's going to be a marathon, going to take some time.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I really couldn't think that before. I didn't know what it would feel like. You have to take it as it comes really, just see how it goes. I mean, I didn't really know what it was going to be like. As far as the way I was playing, couldn't really tell.

Q. Is tennis more fun now, and, if so, why this time around?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, this is what I want to be doing right now. I'm just getting back to the game I love. It's what I want to be doing. I'm not going to take it too seriously or anything, just have fun with it. This is just what I want to be doing right now.

Q. Any time today out there when you were playing her, did you ever think that three or four or five years ago you probably would have beaten this woman, your opponent, very easily? Did that frustrate you? Did you think at all like that?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No, no. I don't think that's really good to be thinking that anyways, you know. Just got to stay in the now, stay positive.

Q. Have you changed any aspect of your game since coming back, like your service motion?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: No, I haven't. I just picked up what's come natural to me.

Q. How much more do you expect to play this year or are you scheduled to play, Jennifer?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Well, I haven't like scheduled anything now. Definitely I'll want to be playing and doing tournaments, whatever the tournaments coming up this year, for the end of the year.

Q. About how many, would you say, you're going to want to play if you stay healthy?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I don't know. It's all about staying healthy, too. I don't know, you know.

Q. Ideally where would you like to be at this time next year tennis-wise?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I don't know. That's just way too far down the road to look.

Q. Is that how you're running things now, sort of month by month to see how it goes.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: Moment to moment.

Q. You always had a pretty close relationship with your mom and dad. Has it evolved in the last couple of years as you come into your late teens and stuff, are you feeling that your relationship with your mom and dad has evolved, and, if so, in what way?

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: I think they're always going to be my parents and they're always going to be there for me. I need their support. They've given me great support. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be here, so.

Q. What advice would you give Martina Hingis or Venus Williams or Anna Kournikova as they start on their career.

JENNIFER CAPRIATI: What advice? Just do what they want and have fun.

Q. Jennifer, when you were away from the game, was there ever a point where you thought you would not make it back to playing Grand Slam tennis?


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