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The top-ranked woman going into the U.S. Open, 20-year-old native Serbian Ana Ivanovic is the belle of Arthur Ashe Stadium.
WWD: How does it feel going into the U.S. Open as the top-ranked seed? Do you prefer that attention to being an underdog with less pressure?
Ana Ivanovic: It’s still quite a new experience for me. I’m very proud to be world number one, and I try to enjoy it. For sure there is more pressure when you are the top seed, because everyone is extra motivated to beat you. But I am learning all the time how best to deal with it. It’s a new challenge.
This story first appeared in the August 27, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
WWD: What did you think of the Olympic Games in Beijing?
A.I.: It was extremely disappointing for me. I would say it was the biggest disappointment of my career. I had been looking forward to playing in the Olympics for some years, and to go all the way there and not be able to play [because of an injury] was very disappointing. But at least I got to take part in the opening ceremony.
WWD: How is your thumb doing?
A.I.: It’s getting better with each day. It’s still not 100 percent, but I am hopeful that I will still be able to play to a high level.
WWD: How involved were you in designing your outfit for the U.S. Open?
A.I.: I talk a lot with Adidas about my clothing, but I’m not really part of designing it. I give them my feedback and they show me their ideas. I’m always excited to see my new outfits.
WWD: What have been some of your favorite outfits that you’ve worn on the court?
A.I.: I loved the white dress I wore during the start of the season last year. The blue and red dresses I wore during the first half of this season are also my favorites.
WWD: What’s important to you in your on-court apparel?
A.I.: The most important thing is that the clothing is comfortable and stylish. The most important thing is comfort, because you have enough things to think about regarding your tactics, without worrying about your dress. But for sure you want to look good, too, because you know that so many people are watching.
WWD: Will you be attending any fashion week shows this September?
A.I.: Probably not, unfortunately, because I have tournaments in Tokyo and Beijing.