Ana continues with the early exits. She was defeated 3-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4) by world No.20 Dominika Cibulkova in the second round of the Kremlin Cup. Ana missed two match points during a thoroughly entertaining encounter. And later in the doubles competition Ana and Italy's Francesca Schiavone lost to top seeds Cara Black and Liezel Huber in the quarter-finals 6-2, 4-6, 10-7.
But Ana is still one of the most interesting athletes on the world. She recently graced the covers of two magazines in China: Sports Illustrated and the popular lifestyle publication Beijing News Weekly (BQ).
The following are short extracts from each interview:
Sports Illustrated China: You once told us that you do not like losing, even when playing chess with your coach, so, are you still bearing that will in mind? Have you ever sensed the pressure caused by your will to win? How did you handle that?
Ana: It’s not easy to lose, that’s for sure! I am a very positive person and I try not to get too down, but sometimes I cry after a match, because there are always so many emotions inside, but then about an hour later I am feeling a lot better.
Regarding pressure, I used to put too much pressure on myself because of the rankings. I wanted so much to reach the top 10, and that stopped me from playing my best tennis, because I was thinking about it too much. The way I improved was to forget about the rankings and focus only on my game, and that way the results, and the ranking, comes automatically.
Sports Illustrated China: Ms. Arantxa Sanchez Vicario said that it was because she is a fighter that made her perfect. Would you label yourself a fighter too? What did the war-time in your country mean to your outstanding personality?
Ana: Yes, I am definitely a fighter. I’ve won some tough matches when I wasn’t playing well, just by fighting and being determined not to lose.
I think that all the experiences I went through growing up with the war and not having good facilities to train in, they all made me more determined to succeed.
BQ: Now that you have visited China twice, what impression do you have of Beijing?
Ana: I can see that sport is important to the Chinese people, and they are very enthusiastic about it. I have been very impressed by the organization at the China Open, so I can also see that the Chinese are reliable people who know what they are doing. I love Asian food, so I have been enjoying eating here too.
BQ: Why did you choose to learn Spanish?
Ana: I have always enjoyed visiting Spain and Latin America. I trained there a little bit some years ago, before I turned professional, and I really enjoyed playing tournaments in South America. I love the latin way of life: it is very relaxed, and I also like that the people are very family-orientated, like me.
(via Ana Ivanovic website)