(January 14, 2013) A look at some the questions and answers from day one of the 2013 Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne.
Q. You have now gotten a double bagel win at every slam. It completes your double bagel slam or calendar slam. Is that something you’re proud of? (Editor’s note – Sharapova needs a double bagel at Wimbledon to complete “the double bagel” slam.)
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I don’t think that’s very relative to anything. (Laughter.)
You know, when you’re out there and playing, you’re just focusing on every point and every game and trying to win as many as you can, and today was just a good scoreline.
Q. You aren’t aware that you may have to face [Venus Williams] in the third round?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I have seen the draw, yes. Thank you.
It is speculated that Maria Sharapova is dating fellow tennis player Grigor Dimitova who lost on Monday. ESPN’s Chris Fowler told Sharapova during an interniew that Dimitrov lost. She laughed and said “Come on. I’m not saying anything.”
In his post-match news conference, Dimitrov was asked about the rumors to which he answered:
“I don’t think (the rumors) are a distraction. I just believe I go on the court and I’m not here to speak about my private life.
“Of course, people love gossip, who doesn’t? But I think it’s a private invasion and I don’t think that’s right, not because we’re different, but it’s not right towards the athletes in general. I think it needs to be even forbidden to be asked.”
Q. Do you feel more confident with him (new coach Carlos Rodriguez) this year?
LI NA: I mean, I was working with him start of last August, so I was feeling pretty good.
I don’t know how is he feeling, but looks okay.
Yeah, he was, how you say, he’s not only teacher about tennis. Not only about technique. Also about like my mind more stronger on the court.
Sam Stosur on her preparation for the Australian Open: “Well, I didn’t read any papers or watch any news.”
Q. Do you feel like a fridge has been lifted off your shoulders?
SAMANTHA STOSUR: Well, obviously I feel very happy, a little bit relieved, and, yeah, just nice to get through that first round finally. You know, from here hopefully I can loosen up a little bit and keep playing better and better.
Q. Are you still trying to maintain that kind of vegan whatever diet?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah I think it’s pretty well known I’m a cheagan.
Q. What do you get to cheat with when you get to cheat?
VENUS WILLIAMS: If it’s on your plate I might get to cheat. If you’re sitting next to me, good luck. You turn your head once and your food might be gone. (Laughing.)
I’m not perfect, but I try.
Q. You have been coming down here for a long time. How has this tournament changed in your eyes?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I feel like this tournament definitely has the best facilities out of any of the majors. Constantly improving. I think it’s unbelievable what they have done at the National Tennis Center over there in just improving the player facilities.
So that’s fantastic, you know, reinvesting back into the tournament.
Q. A couple of Miami tournament questions. They made a few improvements last year, temporary, but they have pretty much been okayed to revamp the site and everything. You have been going there. It’s your home tournament. How important do you think it is for them to kind of upgrade that facility?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Well, obviously you have to update. Don’t be late. That’s one of my mottos. You don’t want to keep wearing the mullet when it’s not the ’80s anymore. (Laughter.)
You know, it’s maybe a strange comparison, but it’s important to update the facilities, because after a while they get old and undesirable.
I think it’s wonderful for the tournament they are updating. I know they had to fight really hard for that, so I’m glad it’s happening.
Q. Do you ever sort of go into a Grand Slam thinking, Something really strange has to happen for me to have a chance to win, or is it just about how well you can play yourself?
TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, I wouldn’t say ‘strange,’ but if you look at the draw, if you want to win the slam, you have to beat at least three of them, then it’s really tough, so… Maybe you were finding for this word ‘strange.’
That’s how it is. Today’s tennis is really, really strong. I think we were in the best era of our sport ever. That’s how it is.
I mean, it’s the same for everybody. I think we all try our best to, you know, break that huge barrier in front of us. You know, let’s see.
I mean, if this happened once at least, then it would be I would say like at least 10 times better than it was before. You know, let’s see.
Q. What did you write on the camera lens?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I tried to write, Aussie, Aussie. The people either didn’t see it or understand my writing. Maybe I misspelled it (laughter).
Q. What is the meaning of the tattoo on your right arm?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: What does it mean?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: It means that beauty will save the world.
Q. Chinese or Japanese?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: It’s Japanese.
Q. What time did you make it?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: What time? I don’t know the time of the day that I made it (smiling), but I believe I was 21 or 22.
Q. How many tattoos on your arm?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: Six. Do you have any tattoos?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: Good. That’s good. That’s great stuff.
Q. Do you have any regret?
JANKO TIPSAREVIC: So far no. I am currently on an embargo from my wife not allowing me to do any more.
Asked if she’s thinking about a possible 3rd round match against Ana Ivanovic:
“No, to be honest I’m not thinking too far ahead. I just want to go one match at a time.
“We both have to go there, you know, to reach third round. So one match at a time and we see how it goes.
“I really don’t want to focus like who is in my third round or semifinal first. Let’s see how it goes.”
Karen Pestaina for Tennis Panorama News