• B

    Lessons from Fed Cup

    Well, my first Fed Cup experience is over and it was certainly a weekend to remember for me. It was the first time I had played on the Fed Cup team and it was also the first time I had played a match on television.

    It sounds silly, but I have never thought before about the people back home in Serbia watching me on their screens and I was trying to block it out of my head, but it wasn’t easy. Add to that, the fact that I was playing against Genie Bouchard, who has just reached a Grand Slam semi-final and is playing with a lot of confidence in front of her home crowd in Montreal, and it was a really tough test.

    I was trying so hard not to look nervous and to treat it like any other match, but of course I was nervous. When I feel nerves I speed up, and start rushing. I know that I should do the opposite, slow everything down and take my time, but I just wasn’t able to do that. I felt that Bouchard was putting a lot of pressure on me and instead of trying to change things I let her dictate play and never managed to settle down.

    It didn’t help that, after winning only one game, the press asked me if I felt humiliated! I didn’t feel humiliated, and next time it will be easier. I just have to stay positive and learn from this experience, I also have to get used to facing tough questions when I lose. I have to believe, I have to calm down, I have to remember to slow down, and to try something different. Lots of things to work on!

    I didn’t find the home crowd annoying at all, it was more the voices in my head that were bothering me!

    It was great that we were able to win the doubles tie, I was playing with my partner (Nina Stojanovic) for the first time and we were just having a lot of fun out on the court. We were playing Dabrowski and Fichman, a really strong team, and I haven’t played doubles for a long time so we were really happy to play together and win.

    We were 8-3 up and it went to 8-8 and we won 10-8 in the match tie-break before going crazy with celebrations! I was speaking with the national coach afterwards and he said ‘wow, the difference in your level was amazing’. So I’m glad I was able to play well in the same arena where I had lost the tough match.

    All in all, it was a positive experience and the whole atmosphere in the team was really nice. I am used to playing tournaments on my own so to be in the team and feel supported by everyone, doing everything together and laughing all the time, it felt really nice. I am already looking forward to next time!

    Thanks for supporting me as always and I’ll write again soon