home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


January 19, 2008

Sania Mirza


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Where do you feel you came up short tonight?
SANIA MIRZA: In the tiebreak, I think I should have gotten the first point. I had a second serve and a forehand. I think that was where I expected the ball to come faster and it actually came slower than I expected.
After that, you know, she didn't really give me much of a chance. She was hitting winners off my first serves. I think she came up with bigger serves. The last game at 5-4, she started with two aces.
First thing I said to myself is, Try and get the first point. But, I mean, I couldn't touch the ball for the first two points. But, I guess, you know, it helps when you're 6'2" and when you have such a big serve.

Q. What do you take out of the game?
SANIA MIRZA: Well, obviously I'm a little disappointed, because I felt like I had the first set and should have closed it out at 5-4. You know, I take a lot of positives out of it. I mean, she's supposed to be one of the biggest hitters of the game, and I was outhitting her. And I think that's a very good thing for me, for my confidence.
Obviously I stepped it up in the last couple of -- last, since the last couple of days. Yeah, she just pressed on the gas pedal when she needed to, and I didn't. I think that was the -- that was the difference. But I think I was in it till the end.
I mean, I was in it till the very end. Yeah, I mean, you know, there's very little I can say. Yeah, you know, maybe one or two points here and there. I think I served okay, you know, getting broken just twice and once in each set. That's more my standard, and it's not bad.

Q. Did the delay affect you at all, getting out on the court after such a big match?
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, we were anxious to get on and everything, but I think it's part of tennis, you know. We were expecting -- we knew last night that it was going to rain all day. Obviously Roger played an unexpected five setter, but I think, you know, it was very -- I mean, we were watching it till the very last point, and watching Roger. It's fine, you think; I can wait.
Yeah, I mean -- yeah, you know, it's part of tennis. Can't really say. We were both waiting, so it's not really like, you know, should affect both of us.

Q. Were you approached about switching and playing at Vodafone Arena? Were you asked about that?
SANIA MIRZA: Well, we were asked about that, but we were given a couple of options. I think with the feature match, so then I think they just decided to just keep us on.

Q. Was an option to maybe cancel your match so they could get the Hewitt match on before too late?
SANIA MIRZA: I mean, the point is that we went on and we finished the match. I think we should just stick to that.
I think the organizers did what was best for the crowd, and I hope that the crowd did enjoy -- I mean, they seemed like they did enjoy the match.

Q. Seems like the serve was the major difference?
SANIA MIRZA: Well, I think we always knew. You know, she -- she's one of the best servers in the game, and I'm really not. You know, I mean, I'm very critical about my game. I think I'm one of the worst servers in the game. You know, if you want me to put it very, you know, matter-of-factly.
I think fact that -- I think I was still able to hold my own. I was able to hold my serve. Yes, of course she came up with the aces when she needed today, and I couldn't. I think maybe that was -- but, you know, I still think that in the breaker, for me to get the first two points was the most important thing.
Then it would have been a totally different tiebreak, because she had a couple of set points on my serve, lost them, and then you go down 2-Love or even 1-All in the breaker. It's a completely different mental approach.
So I wouldn't say -- yeah, maybe when it counted the serve was the biggest thing, but I wouldn't say that's why I lost the match. I mean, you know, I think I did serve pretty well. I was just looking at the stats. I think it was 62 or 64 percent. I think that's not bad. The fact I wasn't getting broken and I was holding.

Q. The atmosphere here with all the different groups coming out to support players and the rowdiness, players and fans love it, but it can also have an ugly side. I wondered, on balance, if you see it as a good thing that the atmosphere here is like that?
SANIA MIRZA: Well, I've not had any experiences. So, I mean, I think -- I think here they are just very passionate about their own players at Slams. They get a chance once in a year to watch their own players play from their own countries. Probably people fly down from their own countries to watch Australian Open.
Obviously it's a great thing. You know, no one wants violence. No one wants, you know -- but I think some things just happen, and I guess alcohol is involved in it. But, you know, most -- it's part of it. I think it happens in every sport. It happens in soccer, happens in tennis, it happens in every sport.
Obviously it's not a pleasant thing. You know, it happens. Not much you can do about it.

Q. Has your performance in this championship given you the confidence to perhaps have the best year that you've had?
SANIA MIRZA: I think it's too early to say. I mean, you know, first Slam of the year. We played just two tournaments, and it's very hard to say what's going to happen. You're a different player every single day I think. I'm a different player than what I played day before yesterday.
Yeah, if I keep playing like this and I keep improving, yes, I hope that it will -- I will, you know, maybe play quarters of a slam or something like that.
But I think right now it's very hard for me to say that I'm going to finish top 10 in the world or top 20 in the world. It's very hypothetical.

Q. Across the country in Perth the Indian cricket team won against a more highly-ranked opponent. You obviously watched that. Did you also draw some sort of motivation from that?
SANIA MIRZA: Of course. I mean, we haven't beaten in Australia in a while. I think the last time Australia lost was four years ago to India. Am I right?

Q. Yeah.
SANIA MIRZA: So, yeah, it is very inspiring. I think, you know, I was watching a little bit off and on today, and last four days, and backing them up. Yeah, unfortunately I couldn't -- I mean, I was -- yeah, definitely, it's a great achievement what -- I would like to congratulate them in the papers.
Yeah, I mean, you know, I still have doubles and mixed. I'm a little disappointed and tomorrow morning I'm going to wake up and feel even more like crap about it. But at the end of the day I have to come out and I have to finish my second round doubles, and play mixed. I'm still alive and I'm still looking for a title here.

Q. Speaking of national teams, when you finish here you'll be playing Fed Cup.
SANIA MIRZA: Yes, we go to Bangkok from here.

Q. How important is it to play for your country, represent your country?
SANIA MIRZA: Well, in my eyes I'm representing my country all the time. I'm from India. Everyone knows I'm from India. I'm playing for my country. Yes, it's an individual sport and everything, but I think people associate us by our country.
I think -- it does change a little bit when you have India written behind you and they say advantage India instead of advantage Mirza. And for me, personally it's a very proud feeling to play for my country. It's a very proud feeling when they say advantage India.
I think -- you feel like you have more of a responsibility and not just playing for yourself and your family. You know, you're playing for the whole country and the whole country is behind you.
I love it. I love playing for them. That's the reason, you know, I'm going to go play Fed Cup and then Olympics hopefully if I'm healthy.

Q. How much does it hurt, then, when you get accusations like the recent ones. I mean, you're obviously a proud Indian.
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, I mean -- yeah, it is painful, but I'm used to it now. I mean -- no, I'm joking. You know, you can never get used to things like that. Of course it does hurt you, because you are playing for your country. Like I said, I'm a very proud Indian.
If I wasn't, then I wouldn't be playing these tournament, I wouldn't be feeling the way I feel about my country, and I would not be living in India right now with all this. I would have moved out a long time ago, but I'm proud to live India and whatever I am I am because I have grown up in India.
So I'm going to fight through it. Well, I am fighting through it. You know, it will come and go. A lot of things have come and gone, and this will come and go as well.

Q. Do you feel let down by the people who accused you of these things?
SANIA MIRZA: 1.2 billion, I mean, there are going to be a couple of people that don't like you. That's very hard. It's very hard for everyone to like you. Promise you, I don't like 1.2 billion people either.
But -- no, I don't think -- I don't take it personally, to be honest. They obviously have good enough reasons for whatever they're doing. At the end of the day, yeah, I am 21, and it is very hard for me to deal with stuff like that sometimes and I feel very down.
But like I played today, I think matches like this just give me confidence. After having all that at the back of my head I'm just playing good matches and I'm still trying my best and still doing the right things. And I think that's the most important thing in my life right now is tennis, and, yeah, fighting cases, but I guess, you know -- no, you know. It's fine. I mean, just -- it's life.

End of FastScripts
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297