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March 15, 2007

S. BAMMER/T. Golovin

6-2, 6-3

An interview with:


THE MODERATOR: We'll have questions for Sybille first and then Tina second.

Q. How did you play, Tina?
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. So you played very well most of that match. You controlled it almost all the way. Do you feel that way?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, it was a good match. I tried to play my game and it worked very good today.

Q. She usually gets lots and lots of balls back, but you played aggressive enough and took her out of her comfort, yeah? Do you understand? She gets a lot of balls back.

Q. Is very steady but you seem to take her out of the place where she's comfortable.
SYBILLE BAMMER: I thought that she's playing more aggressive. I was surprised it was not too fast. Maybe I got better. I don't know. I tried to make her run, that she has to move out of the court, because I thought when she can come into the court, it will be very difficult for me.

Q. What do you surprise them with? Is that your fitness that you're not expecting, the shape? Is it you're a lefty? You surprised them totally and you dominated? Less mistakes, no mistakes. What's the decisive factor?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I think the players, they know me because I was practicing with both already. I was practicing with Golovin already and with Ivanovic. I think they know me, how I play. Maybe they think that they have must beat me because they are better in the ranking than I am. I don't know.
And my game works better than before. I have accuracy, top spin, and the ball is bouncing sometimes up here, and they don't like to play here. They like to play here, but they don't like to play up here.

Q. So you're like Rafael Nadal with the left-handed forehand that goes way up high?
SYBILLE BAMMER: No, for sure it's a very good game what he has. But, yeah, it would be the best if I could do the same.

Q. Did you change your forehand to get more top spin on it?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, we are working that I play more angles, top spin, short angles, and that I to move out of the court. And then that I can go in the court and go down the line or come to the net.

Q. What was Tina doing while you were completing the match, while you were playing?
SYBILLE BAMMER: She was in the players' box with my coach and my boyfriend, husband. We are not married, but it's the same.

Q. Who is your coach?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Here is my co-coach here, Hannes Puehringer, and my coach is Jurgen Waber. He's coming to Miami.

Q. Have the other women been talking to you about having a child? And what's it like in the locker room for you with your daughter around?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I think it's like normal, like if I have no child. And all other players I think like Tina because she's not doing bad things. I hope it will be the same. And, yeah, they speak with her, also, and so Tina, she learns English already. She understands good English.

Q. Does Tina take more after you or more after your boyfriend in terms of personality?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I think she has a little bit from both, for sure.
No? (Tina indicating to her mom)
Smart girl. After Evonne Goolagong won Wimbledon as a mother, she said that the most difficult thing for her as a mother, coming back and playing top tennis, was that she felt -- she found that she was more -- she had more trouble with injuries. Has that been your experience at all or was that just her case?
SYBILLE BAMMER: No, it's not my case. I have no problems with injuries, but I work a lot with the fitness that I don't get injured.

Q. Tina was born in 2001, so she's about the age you start playing. Do you want the same for her, to be tennis player and travel a lot? What do you want for her?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I want that she makes a lot of sports, that she has fun. Because for kids, it's very important to have fun, and then they do things what they really want to do. I don't want that she must play. If she wants to play we go to play. If not, we play something else or we go swimming.
I like that she plays tennis for fun, and if she decides that she wants to be a pro, then I don't know. We will see.

Q. How surprised are you at getting to the semifinals?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I'm very surprised, for sure. Because if someone would tell me before the tournament, you reached the quarter finals or semifinals, I said okay, I take it.
So I really happy about that. And I think because I won yesterday and today, it was because I -- what is the opposite of nervous -- I don't know the word.

Q. Calm.
SYBILLE BAMMER: Calm. I was calm and tried to play my game and focus on my game, and I was not focusing about my opponents that they are so good. I just tried to play my game and was focused on me.

Q. Do you think that is why you have reached the semifinals and may go into the final?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I think for today and yesterday, it was the most reason that I won, because I was calm and was -- I played my game.

Q. What are the most important parts of you doing so well here? What have you been doing especially well to have this result?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I like the courts here. I don't know the surface. The spin is bouncing very high, I think.

Q. Yes.
SYBILLE BAMMER: And it's advantage for me, I think, because I play with spin and then the ball bounces higher, and then they are sometimes late and they cannot play as good, their games.

Q. When did you know mentally that you could play this level of tennis? Was it after you beat Serena in Hobart or was it sometime last year?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Two years ago I lost against Petrova in the third set. I lost many times in the third set against top 10 players. And since this year, when I beat Serena Williams, I knew that I really can beat everyone if I play good.

Q. So you jumped mentally? You got up after Hobart, you thought, "Well, now my game is way up here"?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, because I thought -- I beat Serena Williams, so why I shouldn't beat other players which are higher ranked.

Q. When you beat Serena, you were ranked higher than she was.
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, but for me, she is Serena. Almost was like top 10 player, because she won a lot of grand slams and many (indiscernible) already.

Q. If you had not had a daughter, do you suppose you'd be as good as you are at the moment?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I don't know, because before Tina, my best ranking was around 200, 205. And the baby break was really good for me. And then I start again and I said, "Okay. It's my last chance and I really want to try and give my best."

Q. You've had so much success since you had Tina. Are you planning another right now?
SYBILLE BAMMER: No. I think if another one is coming, I need to retire, because then I'm too old and I lose two years or three years.

Q. What is the most positive thing out of having a child that affects you as a tennis player, if anything?
SYBILLE BAMMER: For me, it's very good because I have my own family. My boyfriend and Tina, we are one family, and they stand behind me. It gives me a lot of power. And when I'm not on the court, I don't think 24 hours a day on tennis. I can also relax and do normal things.

Q. Does she travel with you all the time, 100 percent of the time?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Not 100 percent, but, like, 80, 90 percent.

Q. So have you ever allowed any of the other players to baby-sit here?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, Tina, she likes a lot of players, no?

Q. Who does she like?
SYBILLE BAMMER: She likes, of course, the German-speaking players, but she also likes other players.

Q. Can you give us a few names?
SYBILLE BAMMER: She said Martina Hingis.

Q. Did Hingis baby-sit her?
SYBILLE BAMMER: No, but they spoke together, and we were sitting on one table and they ate cake together last year.

Q. Cake is important. So before you go out to play a match, you think, "Tina needs some new shoes, I'd better win this match or" --
SYBILLE BAMMER: No, I play tennis because I really love the game, the sport.

Q. Did Tina say anything in particular, does she say anything to you before you go play your matches?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Most of the time she say, "I hope you will win."

Q. Does she know when you win and when you lose?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, of course.

Q. So does she get happy, and then what happens if you come off the court and it's a difficult loss? Does she console you? Does she know when you're sad?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, she knows that I'm sad. But when I lose stupid or when it was close, then most of the time she makes me happy, and then I don't feel as bad as before.

Q. Tina what's your mother's best shot.
THE MODERATOR: You wore Tina out.

Q. We're good at that. Can you talk about your next match against Svetlana? Can you talk about your semi final match, what you're gonna need to do against Svetlana?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Last year I played in Berlin, against Svetlana on clay court. I think I will go out on the court and try to become and play my game and I will see how it works.

Q. How much time did you take away from tennis after Tina was born and how difficult was it to get, you know, back in shape?
SYBILLE BAMMER: It takes me around one year and a half to get back in very good shape.

Q. And when you said when the pregnancy was good for you, the maternity leave was good for you, what kind of things did you -- why was that good specifically?
SYBILLE BAMMER: I was already traveling more than five years, and I was always very close to reach the top 200. But I lost many times, 7-5 or 7-6 in the third set, so I was also mentally a little bit negative. So the one year when I was off, it was very good to relax my mind and stay home one year and be prepared for her.

Q. It sound like that even when you got pregnant, you expected to return to the tour, like you never had any doubts. Is that the case?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, my boyfriend, he said I'm very young, I'm 21, and he knows that I really like to play tennis, and he wants to give me a chance. If I want, I can try one more time. And I said okay, I try one more time and we will see how it goes.

Q. Did he quit the job or --

Q. What was he doing? What's his affiliation?
SYBILLE BAMMER: He was a start-up engineer for Italian company.

Q. He was a what?
SYBILLE BAMMER: A start-up engineer.

Q. An engineer?
THE MODERATOR: Start-up engineer.
SYBILLE BAMMER: They sold also the machines to the States, Salvanini, I don't know. It's a big machine.

Q. Did you, of the Austrian players, did you model your game after Schwartz at all, Barbara Schwartz?

Q. You play a little like she plays, more slice, but the forehand looks a lot similar, the serve. Yes or no?
SYBILLE BAMMER: You think so? She maybe steps forward more like this and I make more the spin.

Q. But who did you admire when you were coming up as a player, which players did you watch?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Thomas Muster, of course. He was No. 1 and won the French Open and was big star in Austria.

Q. So did you model your strokes when you were younger after his?
SYBILLE BAMMER: Yeah, I was always a big fan for Thomas Muster, and I watched almost all matches when he played. And he was left hand, too, so I thought maybe I can see something.

Q. But you don't grunt like he did, make the noises?
SYBILLE BAMMER: No. Everyone has their own style.

Q. Has Kim or Lindsay ever talked to you about being a mother and being on tour, 'cause they're both looking -- they're both going to start families? And have they talked to you, or any other player on the court talked to you, about being a mother and playing on tour?
SYBILLE BAMMER: No, not really, because most of the players are really young, and I think they want to be more focused on playing tennis. And maybe when they retire, they want to get their family. I think it's unusual like I did.

Q. If you win this tournament, will you take Tina to Disneyland?
SYBILLE BAMMER: We both already -- the last three years in Anaheim in the Disneyland. But we will take a day off in Los Angeles, because my boyfriend, he has a cousin in L.A. and she has three daughters, 6, 8 and 11, and Tina, she likes them very much and we will visit them.

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