I always say in my heart I’m French and in my head I’m Serbian–and let people guess what that means.
I was playing both volleyball and tennis. My parents just introduced me to tennis as a change of pace.
I fell in love with the sport and had success at an early age, playing my first Slam at 14 and a half. But that doesn’t mean it’s been easy–everyone has their own story, a tough path to achieve what they want.
We make fun of it quite often, actually: like when friends come over, there’s always some game on tv and they ask, “Can’t you put a movie on or something?!”
For kids it’s great to be sporty and not always inside playing video games or whatever.
In our free time, I might go watch my brother or play with him or we’d go for a run all together We’re a really sporty and healthy family. This is our style of life.
It’s especially complicated with the tennis schedule and all the travel–I’m not often at home either.
I was really talented in volleyball–even better than at tennis. But I was just a little bored with it; at a young age, it wasn’t that interesting for me because I was already much taller than the other kids and playing better. So, I chose tennis and went my own way both because I was talented and because it was also more of a challenge.
It’s annoying to have the French press always asking, “Are you ok handling the media pressure and expectations?” because it’s been a few years now since I first arrived on the tour. That’s part of the job and it’s actually a good sign if I have to deal with it.
When you’re a pro, winning or not is part and parcel of the job, as a certain Roger Federer puts it! I’m proud of what I do every day and I have nothing to be ashamed of.
Hard work pays off. The women winning the big tournaments nowadays are aged 30 rather than 20, so I’ve got time yet! There’s no rush!
It’s a big thing–sport is in our blood. To us (her family), it’s normal and natural. But to have such a family–my father was a professional handball goalkeeper, my mom played volleyball at the international level, my brother is a promising young football player, trying to become professional as well, and me on the tour–it’s amazing.
It’s difficult to express yourself correctly because it’s about emotions.
I listen to lots of different types of music, like Serbian, Reggae, South American, French and then modern music like Rihanna, Chris Brown and David Guetta and all those other pop hits we are all singing and dancing to.
I am a big fan of beach volleyball.
When I’m home, I’m trying to spend more time with my brother and family, I like to go and watch my brother play soccer.
Another of my hobbies when I’m on holiday is to play beach volleyball, although I don’t get to do this too often.
It’s not like our parents pushed us into their way of life. I’m actually impressed with all of us–it’s something really special.
It was definitely an amazing experience to be part of such an unbelievable group, filled with Grand Slam champions in all disciplines.
At the beginning of my career, I played doubles as a way to practice for my singles, since that’s my priority. I’m enjoying doubles, I’m proud of it, and I’m happy it’s helping my singles–to reach the same level in singles, if possible, is the goal.
It’s definitely great to have a fixed partner: there’s all this routine stuff which makes it easier to practice every day. And when it’s your best friend on the tour, it makes it even better.
I’m a professional player; I’m really a collective-minded person. So, I really love all the Fed Cup stuff and Olympics–I get so pumped.
This is the crowd giving you these positive vibes; therefore, you live this thing even more deeply.
They (my parents) know me best and are such nice and cool parents–and they understand that though tennis is my job, it’s not my whole life. It’s amazing to have such a good relationship with them.
I love Paris, Paris is my favorite city and it sounds like a love city.
I’m more romantic, I like a restaurant or a movie or just walking around.
At about 12, I began to think that tennis is the sport for me. At 13 I began studying by correspondence and travelling more, playing tournaments. In 2007 when I was European Under 14 champion in singles, I really decided that this is what I want to do in my life.
I’m pretty happy with my technique, like serve, forehand, backhand, but I’m really impressed by the one-handed backhand and I think I would take Roger Federer’s slice backhand.
I definitely feel like I’m coming from a team-sport family and culture –and I can’t deny my Serbian roots.
I’m happy just trying to do my best – I’m not worried about the time it’s taking; I’m just trying to enjoy every win.
I know what I have to do to improve, so I’m just doing it on my own. I don’t pretend I can reach my goals alone, and the situation is pretty open–I can always find someone, but it has to be a good fit.
The only thing I can request from myself is to work hard every day, to know where I’m going and what I have to improve.
It’s different when I’m playing alone – I handle myself differently.
Everyone has their own story, their own way, their own process. For some, it goes easily and they stay at the top; for others, it’s up and down; some arrive to the top 10 and then they’re struggling. There’s not really one key to success.
I’ve never had an idol – someone I was trying to copy. I like to watch other players and see how they are playing, but since I got a wildcard at 14 for the Australian Open, from this stage I have always been thinking, ‘any of them can be my next opponent, so I’m not going to try and copy them or idolize them.’
(I like) being at home and seeing all my friends and family. It was really important for me as the year is very busy and you’re travelling all around the world.
During the tournament, I have my routine; I have some treatment, rest a little, listen to music, watch some TV series and movies and chatting or Skyping with my friends and family.
I’m trying now to focus on each match, even if it’s not such a famous name. I’m a humble person and respect every opponent–anybody can be tough and play great tennis, especially for one match.
I have some superstitions while I’m playing – the same shower, the same toilet, the same routine pretty much [every] post-match.
I’m pretty much enjoying and loving what I’m doing in my life … Maybe something completely different from a tennis player, I would be an actor. I love Julia Roberts.
Winning a Grand Slam is something nobody will take away from you in your life. You’ve won it. Your name will be on the cup.
Gladiator is the most impressive film I have seen in my life.
I really like Croatia; it is such a nice country and close to Serbia. I spent a lot of summers there when I was younger and it’s like a paradise and not too far from home. Spain is great too! I was there the other year and it was really nice.
I am more of a beach and sun person, you know with beach volleyball, party and relaxing by the sea. Definitely this kind of holiday where it is really hot and I can enjoy the summer and go swimming in the sea with my friends.
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