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2007 Medibank International (Sydney): withdraws due to respiratory infection

9th January, 2007

Moderator: Before we get started with questions, Svetlana has an upper respiratory infection that is affecting her throat, so please understand that speaking is not that easy. Go ahead. It's painful and she obviously can't talk that much, so just be respectful of that.

Q: Could you give us a background how long you've had this for?

Svetlana: Well, I think I flew to Hong Kong on the 1st of January, and since I have arrived I've been feeling pretty -- I mean, it's cold in there and I stayed away next day, then the next day I felt bad and I was jet lagged and it was tough, everything. I think I get sick over the week, and it's really bad, like second, third day. I'm looking forward to getting better and hopefully prepare well for Australia.

Q: Is it just breathing and speaking? Do you have any aches and pains?

Svetlana: No, I am good with my body, I prepared well. This really disappoints me a lot. I cannot do everything well, but I just need to stop in the middle of the round to breathe, and my nose close and I hear everything ding-dinging in my ears. The blood is going up and I can't really focus with everything else.

Q: What are the medical staff telling you about your chances of playing in Melbourne? How long have you got to recover?

Svetlana: Well, actually they were telling me -- I was asking, today was my concern if I can go on the court today or either I pull out before the match. They said, "How do you feel?" I felt better today, but I know I cannot push my body to the max because otherwise next week is going to be horrible. I did my best. I did not play for three days and I felt more or less good, but I just -- it's difficult when you cannot breathe. You cannot play around it. This is my advantage over other players; I can move well, I can play long rallies, but I'm not so, for example, Maria. So doctors said just take your time. Nobody take responsibility to tell you how long it will take.

Q: So you don't know?

Svetlana: No, I'm taking antibiotics which makes me feel a little worse -- well, more relaxed, and yeah, I don't know.

Q: Svetlana, if you don't feel better by next week, will you play the Australian Open anyway, or will you pull out to look after your health for later in the year?

Svetlana: Well, I feel better every day. Yesterday I felt ridiculous. Today I felt better so I decided to try. Definitely I will play Australian Open. If I feel a bit like this I will push myself and maybe I will have to retire again. I am really motivated to play. If I am the same way as I am today, I won't. But if I get better, I think I should. It's impossible I stay like this one more week. It's not that serious for me.

Q: So you've had it for about a week now?

Svetlana: No, three, four days really bad. Flying from Hong Kong here, flew over the night, and it was like the worst flight of my life.


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