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January 19, 2004

Alicia Molik


THE MODERATOR: First question for Alicia, please.

Q. How is the foot?

ALICIA MOLIK: Yeah, the foot's very good, thank you. Just great to finish, you know, four, five days ago I didn't think I was going to be stepping out on the court. To go out there and play and enjoy it, finish and win, still feel good, then no complaints really. It's a really good feeling.

Q. No pain at all?

ALICIA MOLIK: No, no. If I was in pain, I wouldn't be out there. That was sort of more or less the decision I made a few days ago. It's been feeling really good. I've been getting loads and loads of work on it. Yeah, it's been feeling really good.

Q. Are you nervous about your next match?

ALICIA MOLIK: No, not at all. I mean, if it can hold up an entire match and me get through it and it feel great, then, no, there's no reservations. I won't play with any reservations either.

Q. Do you sort of fear it's something that will dog you for the rest of your career? What was your initial reaction to the recurrence?

ALICIA MOLIK: Yeah, well, obviously the warning signs went off. It was a similar feeling I'd had in the past. The reality is, yes, this thing could dog me, as you say, for the rest of my career. But, you know, can't live every day with, you know, that constant doubt and worry. It's just something that I have to manage. When I feel like I need time off, I need to just put my tennis racquets away for a while and take a bit of time off. It's just one of those things I'll need to manage. It's happened a couple times now and I think I'm a little bit older and wiser and, you know, I'm going to be better at managing these type of things. I hope it's the last thing, but no doubt, you know, injuries happen. There's so many people injured out there. This is just, you know, another thing really.

Q. How much had you been able to practice in the lead-up week?

ALICIA MOLIK: It's been limited, partly by choice. If I don't need to get out there for hours at a time, then I just wanted to stay fresh and get ready for my first round and basically, you know, rest my foot as much as I could. So I just basically did what I need to do and, you know, I think today showed that I only needed to do the minimal amount to hold my form. I think I played great out there today, like I did at Hopman Cup. I just got better and really rolled with the punches as the tournament went on. My tennis got that much better. I think today's a great indication of the type of tennis I'll be playing in two days' time.

Q. You can do damage in this draw, do you think?

ALICIA MOLIK: Yeah, I think so. My first obstacle was my first match. I think it really mattered who I played. To get through that and be fit and healthy, you know, I don't like to look too far ahead, but I think I do know who I may play. I've been playing pro tennis, and to be honest, I don't really mind who I come up against next. I'm just glad to be out there, glad to be fit and glad to be playing good tennis. I think that will put me in good stead against a lot of people.

Q. Do you feel for her out there today?

ALICIA MOLIK: I just got to watch one game of hers, I think one or two games before I went on. I didn't get to watch too much. I saw her in the locker room before. It's a pretty rough draw. I guess one positive is she said she felt she great out there, the crowd were behind her. She gave it her all. I think she's only 15 at the moment. So in a sense I think it's a great experience for her. Now she knows the level, now she knows where she needs to get to, now she knows a few things she needs to work on. She seemed to think it was a really positive experience and she really enjoyed it out there. I think it's fantastic someone who's 15 went out there on Rod Laver Arena, the centre court, in front of so many people, and really enjoyed it. She did have a smile on her face which was really, really good to see.

Q. Was it Hantuchova in the third set in Hopman Cup?

ALICIA MOLIK: It was Hantuchova, it was second set. It was 6-1 or 6-2 and it was 3-love my way.

Q. If it happens to be her next round, you'd be reasonably confident you could do that again and complete the match this time?

ALICIA MOLIK: Oh, look, scores aside and people aside, I finished today. I won in two sets. I think I played some good tennis, so, you know, there's no reason why I can't repeat. I'll be doing my best to, yeah, definitely.

End of FastScripts….

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