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January 10, 2008

Ana Ivanovic


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Three tough three-set matches. I know you're disappointed, but is the right amount of preparation for you for Melbourne?
ANA IVANOVIC: Yeah, definitely. Obviously it would have would be better if I won, but still it was good preparation for me. Play against No. 1 in the world it's never easy, but I'm happy I gave her a very tough match.
I'm just disappointed about the way I played last game. I think I had chances but definitely didn't use them, but still I played some good tennis today and I'm definitely going to Melbourne with some confidence.

Q. You played Justine in the WTA Championship in Madrid.

Q. She's had a break and you've been back playing. Did you notice anything different about her game, or was it the same level as where it was?
ANA IVANOVIC: No, I think she's still playing the same game. I just think today what I did different I was stepping more forward and playing a lot of volleys and a lot of approaches and putting more pressure on her. I think that's the way I should play against her.
You know, I was really happy also that today for almost whole match except that last game I managed to keep my level. You know, I didn't have many up and downs like I did in the previous matches, so that's something definitely positive. I work hard in off-season, so I'm happy to see the results.

Q. Will you stay in Sydney for the next couple days or head to Melbourne?
ANA IVANOVIC: Well, they're just checking the flight now. I think we're going to try to leave today because tomorrow everything will be fully booked.

Q. If you had to play this match today again, what would you do differently that would give you a slightly better chance to beat her?
ANA IVANOVIC: Well, I think the only thing I could have improved was the percentage of my serves. I think it was dropping as the match went on. That's definitely one thing.
Just the last game I would play differently.

Q. Do you think you were just a little bit tired or lost a little bit of concentration?
ANA IVANOVIC: Yes, and she hit two times in the middle of the court and, you know, I just instead of going around the ball I just went straight to the ball and I made the mistake.
That was definitely very disappointing because I work hard through all the match. Just to finish like that wasn't nice. But as I said, I was pretty happy with my game today.

Q. Correct me if I'm wrong, but today was the first time that you've won a set off Justine.

Q. Is that something that you think you achieved, or was it her level that had reduced?
ANA IVANOVIC: Well, I like to think it's something that I achieve. But as I said before, I just felt today I played different than last couple of times. I was more aggressive and putting more pressure on her.
I don't think she played that bad, it was just my game that was I raised, and, you know, it's very positive to see. Coming into Melbourne it's definitely going to give me some confidence and, you know, I think also next time we play she's going to have a different perception of what to expect. I think I have pretty good chance, so I'm really excited for next challenge.

Q. As your tennis improves and your profile lifts, how to you balance the glamourous side and the tennis side of your life?
ANA IVANOVIC: There is not much of a glamour going on. I worked really hard in my off-season. I spend most of my days practicing hard on the tennis court. Photo shootings and these things are something fun to do in the off time if I have a day off.
Obviously every time I get a chance to work with the professionals, the makeup artists, yeah, people I can learn also from and find my own style, so that's definitely fun for every girl.

Q. You've been compared with Anna Kournikova. The big difference with Anna she never won a title and you've won five titles. Do you think it's unfair to have those comparisons against you? How do you break out of that mold?
ANA IVANOVIC: I think any woman doesn't like to be compared, so neither do I, especially when -- what we have in common was we both play tennis. As you already said, I won couple of titles and my main goals I have out on tennis court.
That's something that I work hard for. You know, I put so much hard work in it, and it's just pity to waste it on something else.

Q. You've had a lot of publicity this week about your glamour and there were votes where you're voted the sexiest player and that sort of thing. How do you react to that?
ANA IVANOVIC: I don't take it too serious. People know me for how I play tennis, and the way you look doesn't help you win points. As I said, that's my main goal, to win points in tournaments. So I try to focus on that.

Q. Do you expect to get more of that kind of publicity in Melbourne next week? Do you have to block it out and not read of papers?
ANA IVANOVIC: Well, I don't think to read a lot about myself, but still people write and it's -- you can't do much about it. It's still very flattering and, you know, I would lie if I would say it's not nice. Every girl likes compliments.
But as I just said, you know, I don't want to lose focus on what my goals are.

Q. Is that becoming more difficult as you get more of this kind of pup publicity, or is it the same?
ANA IVANOVIC: No, I think it's still the same. I have really good team around me and I'm really happy. Even if I go off my way a little bit they can point me in the right direction. I really trust them and I believe they're doing a good job.

Q. Does your family help with that as well? I think you're very close with them.
ANA IVANOVIC: Yeah. My mom travels with me and that's very nice. She's my best friend as well, so that helps me a lot to have someone to talk about anything.

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