- On Court
- About Ana
- Club Ana
We came to Antwerp on Friday. Even though you don’t often play your first round match until Tuesday it is best to arrive at a tournament early so you can get used to the conditions. Of course, if you play a tournament the previous week that is not possible.
Soon after checking into the hotel I went to the gym to do some running and exercises. Later in the day I practiced for an hour or so then went to bed early. I was feeling tired because I got up at 6am to get the flight from Belgrade. I did the same at the weekend, just practice and conditioning work.
It was great to see lots of my friends and family after two months away. Even though this week at home has been relaxing compared to travelling on the Tour, I have still been quite busy.
At the moment I am learning to drive. I started last November but I am away so often that it will be tough to get enough lessons before taking the exam.
I got back home late on Sunday night. I'm not home for many weeks of the year so it feels good to be back. Last year I was home for more than I expected because of my shoulder injury but even then it was for no more than seven or eight weeks.
The first thing I do when I get back from a tournament is pick up the phone and call everybody to let them know I am back and arrange to meet. The worst thing is unpacking. I must admit, I just put my bags in my room and leave them there for a few days because I prefer to do other things first!
I’m enjoying my time here very much. I really like the people here because they are very kind and also responsible.
I have recently been reading books about Chinese history and I have an interest in Asia in general – the culture is fascinating. It’s very different to other countries. They have lots of interesting little customs here that you should observe.
For example, it is considered impolite to give and receive gifts or business cards with just one hand – you should use two hands.
After a long flight we arrived in Tokyo. Having to take so many flights is one of the worst things about being a professional tennis player so to keep myself occupied I always carry a book with me. On the plane I read "The Night in Lisbon" by Erich Maria Remarque. It is a very interesting novel about refugees in the Second World War.
We are flying to Tokyo on Friday. Obviously the Australian Open didn’t go how I wanted but I don’t want to look back. Of course I will try to learn from what happened and try to become a better player. I am a very positive person and know that I am still young so there will be lots more opportunities.
Of course I am disappointed to have lost in the Second Round of Australian Open. Sam played really good and I made a lot of mistakes. I will learn from it and become a better player. I have belief in myself.
I am staying in Melbourne for another week. Then I will go to Tokyo for next tournament. I like Melbourne very, very much. It’s my favourite city. My uncle lives here and I also have some friends here. We sometimes go out for coffee.
It feels good to be in the second round. First match of grand slam there is always a little bit nerves so you don’t often play your best tennis. You hope to improve each round.
I began to focus a little bit more when I went behind break yesterday. That was wrong – I should have started from the beginning! In all matches I try and focus and concentrate and find my rhythm but she made it very hard for me. The low balls she hit made it hard to attack. I tried to move her little bit. I’m just pleased I could take the opportunities.
It’s nice to be back to Melbourne. I am excited about the Australian Open. I am familiar with the courts because I did a lot of training on them before Christmas and I hope that will help me during the tournament.
I am focusing only on my opponent in round one, Shenay Perry. There aren’t any easy matches in professional tennis, despite what some people say. You have to forget the other’s person’s ranking. If you do not concentrate fully on the match anyone can beat you.
I had some spare time (unfortunately! I would rather be playing in Sydney still) so thought I would write and let you know more about the work I did during off-season.