Re: US Open 2008 : The Come Back
Thanks so much Truc for the articles. I'm taking the liberty of translating the first L'Equipe article - there are errors in translation at parts (*), so please feel free to correct me:
JO-WILFRIED TSONGA was moved by his victorious comeback after his knee surgery.
Q: After match point, you appeared emotional. You re-enacted your “dance of the thumbs” of the Rod Laver Arena and you also looked up at the sky murmuring something. What were you thinking of?
JWT: About a lot of things. I thought back over all I’ve been through since the knee surgery three months ago. I felt overwhelmed by the emotions, images. I recalled all the work behind the scenes to rebuild my knee. During these three months, it wasn’t all fun every day. There were times when I didn’t have the will but I went to work nonetheless. And then, I thought of other things because over and above being a tennis player, I am a human being.
Q: Which means?
JWT: I thought mostly about my best friend, Jade, who had an accident. I dedicate this victory to her.
Q: You appeared to be withdrawn in the first set. A bit slow, not always taking the right decisions. Were you afraid that you would lose this match?
JWT: No, never. And do you know why? Because I knew that I would not play my best tennis. In the end, knowing that prevented me from panicking after the loss of the first set. I almost already knew, before coming on court, that I would lose the first set. As if I knew the scenario. Frankly, I was calm.
Q: What did you tell yourself after this lost tie-break?
JWT: OK, I lost it but now let’s begin. (laughter)
“ What dominated was the excitement.”
Q: Were you worried about your knee during the match?
JWT: I can't really avoid thinking about that. Subconsciously, I was afraid of a bad move or a slip but not more than that. But I wasn’t thinking about my knee every two seconds. In my mind, it was healed. What dominated, was the excitement. I just had this desire to go on the court and run. I had missed all this too much.
Q: Why did you have trouble at first?
JWT: I felt a bit sluggish. Yet, I wasn’t nervous in the locker room. I followed the same routine as always. But hey, I’ve just resumed work, after all! It’s not the same as training. In training, everything is natural, easy. But in a real match, you think and everything becomes harder.
Q: How would you judge your current level compared to that at the Australian Open?
JWT: I’m far from that.
Q: Hence, you’re not going to repeat your Melbourne success?
JWT: Already, I’m in the second round against Carlos Moya. After this match, I will be able to tell you if I will reach the final here. For example, if I lose, I will tell you that this time I will not make it to the final (laughter).
Q: Your father and mother, who have never been to the United States, are here. There’s also your first coach and the best friend of your father whom you consider as a family member. They have been baptised the “Rillette Connection”, with reference to Mans. Do you need all this support?
JWT: Yes, yes, yes… And the more it goes, the more I feel I need close to me the people I love. They give me stability.
Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power ~ Abraham Lincoln
Last edited by Turquoise; 08-30-2008 at 01:13 PM.
Reason: some translation wording edited