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Pilots' Blog

Our bloggers check in with the latest news and views from the 2008 Pilot Pen Tennis Tournament.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Queens of the Roundtable

The Pilot Pen's top four women's seeds -- world No. 10 Anna Chakvetadze, No. 12 Daniela Hantuchova, No. 13 Marion Bartoli and No. 14 Agnes Szavay -- recently held an all-access, roundtable discussion with the media.

Here's some of what they had to say:

Chakvetadze, on the brutal invasion of her Moscow home last December, in which burglars made off with over $200,000 worth of valuables while bounding Chakvetadze and her parents. Chakvetadze had her hands tied together so hard that she couldn't hold a racket for nearly two weeks:

"I did put it behind me, I don't think about it anymore ... It's affected me because I didn't practice. For almost 10 days, I couldn't hold a racket ... I just wanted to play, and I couldn't ... I wanted to move, but my parents didn't want to. They wanted to stay (in the home), so we stayed."

Szavay, on the pressure she's felt since her remarkable run from the qualifiers to the finals of last year's Pilot Pen (she lost to Svetlana Kuznetsova):

"It wasn't easy to play this year, I've had some ups and downs. It's not easy to deal with this pressure I get from other people. It's really not easy to play like that, when everybody wants to beat you, you're not the one who has nothing to lose, everybody's expecting you to win, not the (opponent)."

Hantuchova, on her Pilot Pen doubles partner, Lindsay Davenport:

"I planned not to play too many doubles because of the (stress fracture) injury I had, but when you get asked by somebody like her, it's impossible to say no. She's such a great champion, and I think it's great for the tournament to have her here, at least for doubles. We always have a lot of fun together, there's so many things I can learn from her. I respect her game so much."

Hantuchova, on Davenport's gesture at the Australian Open, where she decided to pull the pair out after the third round because Hantuchova had a quarterfinals singles match the next day:

"It's such a great gesture from her ... She said 'Look, I just don't want you to have any regrets, having to play doubles the night before. You've got to save your energy for the match.' That was something I respected so much. I don't know anybody else who would do that."

Unfortunately, no one had much to ask Bartoli.

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