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February 18, 2011

Jelena Jankovic


6-3, 5-7, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Hell of a match, wasn't it?
JELENA JANKOVIC: My God, it's been an amazing match so far. I mean, I was up a set and I had a lot of chances I think in the second set, but she played a couple of great points and had some luck as well. Like a let point, you know, when it was 6-5.
Then, you know, in the third set I was down 4-Love, so it was really hard for me. I was a little bit tired on the court and I felt that I almost had no gas in the tank.
But with positive attitude, I just kept saying to myself, Just keep going one point at a time. That's what I did. I was able to break her especially -- so tough to break her. She has one of the best serves in the game. I was able to stay somehow tough. I never gave up, and I came out as a winner.
So really happy with my performance overall. There was obviously a lot of ups and downs, but the win is the most important.

Q. When you win a match as tough as that and you hang in there, you've got to think your back again.
JELENA JANKOVIC: Of course I'm back. (Smiling.)

Q. Well, you've been struggling for several months , various injuries, the eye. But when you play a match like that, you've got to think...
JELENA JANKOVIC: Of course. I mean, of course. This is why you practice. This is why you train really hard and spend so many hours on the court hitting balls and doing a lot of repetition. Even when the times are tough you still go out court and really try to do your job and come back.
And playing in front of the crowd, and especially such an atmosphere like this and playing against the top players and winning such matches like this is, it gives me great satisfaction.
So I'm really proud of myself how well I've handled the situations so far in this tournament, and look forward to playing tomorrow.

Q. Just on that note, it's the second day in a row you've had a three setter that you've had to come back and fight for.

Q. Like you said, you're back. But, I mean, is there a point in these two matches where you can sit down and say, Yeah, I've kind of crossed -- I mean, you must set goals for yourself in terms of this year. In some ways, have you kind of achieved a certain goal with those two matches?
JELENA JANKOVIC: I think I was looking for this kind of beginning. I needed to start somewhere. Because I haven't played many matches and I had a lot injuries in the past, so I needed to get myself going and get myself on track again and show that I'm here and that I can perform and how well I can play and how well I can handle the situations and be mentally tough and really hang in with the top players.
That's what I basically did. You know, even those times when I haven't played so well, I was still in there and fighting and grinding through. This is maybe why I came out as a winner two times in a row when I was down 5-3 yesterday and today 4-Love.
One thing is I really have that drive, that hunger again, that, you know, kind of fire in me again. I was a little bit flat in the past and didn't have the energy and kind of got down on myself. And now I'm kind of still there and still enjoying, even the challenges when the times are tough. I'm still enjoying the battle and really grinding through.

Q. You said the first time you came in after your first match due to your injuries. Was there a match or kind of low point last year where you said, Wow, it can't get any worse than this?

Q. Do you remember that moment?
JELENA JANKOVIC: I don't remember because I don't want to remember. (Laughter.) If I remember, you know, I wouldn't even be here. I would be crying over my own destiny, you know.
But, you know, times were tough. There was no doubt about that. Injuries get to you, and you really feel like, you know, all this bad luck, I cannot really play tennis. You watch other girls play, and you're just basically watching them on TV.
And I used to be there. I used to be the one playing deep in the tournaments and playing for the trophies. I been No. 1 in the world; I been in the top 10 for many years. But I really was missing those kind of matches and really fighting and having fun out there.
I'm really having fun, and that's what matters. Like I said, when the times were tough, it was difficult to get on the practice court. After you lose a match and you been working hard, you go and play a tournament, you lose again. You go and practice so hard again; you lose again. How tough you know can that be? How long can you keep doing that until you somehow get out of it?
But I think everything is possible if you believe in yourself and you keep working. And if you're healthy, things can come in a good way and you can come out as a winner. It can make you much stronger than in the past.

Q. In terms injuries was last year your worst?
JELENA JANKOVIC: Yeah, my worst year. So many injuries. And not injuries here and there, but injuries that took a long time to heal. I had a tough time. I couldn't do anything.
It's over, I'm in the semifinal, and I'm really happy. I'm tired in this moment, but I look forward to competing again tomorrow.

Q. Last year you lost to Stosur in the French Open semis. Was that on your mind tonight?

Q. Do you guys work like that?
JELENA JANKOVIC: You know, to be honest, it's different story playing on hardcourts and playing on clay courts.
I prefer playing her on hardcourts. I beat her in the semifinal of Indian Wells, and I knew that if I can return and if I can hang in there and kind of do my thing with my shots, and if I serve well at important times, I can do it.
I think she plays better on clay courts. Her serve comes more into consideration and seems like tougher for me to return it because the ball is heavier and bounces higher. I prefer playing her on hardcourts. I think her game suits my game better on hardcourt.
So I think I have a lot wins against her on hardcourt. She only beat me on clay.

Q. Caroline Wozniacki next, the newly-crowned world No. 1. You've got a 4-0 record against her. That must give you confidence. She's yet to beat you, and you've beaten her four times.
JELENA JANKOVIC: I have no idea. (Smiling.)

Q. It's true.
JELENA JANKOVIC: It's going to be a tough match. She's really a solid player. She doesn't really give many free points. You have to really work hard for every point and really have to be strong and solid.
You know, hopefully -- it's going to be a tough match, no doubt about that. I just have to stay strong. Hopefully I will be okay physically and I can play my tennis. We'll see what happens.

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