08/11/2018 – Timi held a press conference in Budapest about the 2018 season.
At the end of October, Timi finished this season in Singapore, and soon the preparations for the new season will begin. The Hungarian player repeatedly wrote a new chapter int he history of the Hungarian tennis, this year with Kristina Mladenovic: in January she became Grand Slam winner at the Australian Open, becoming the first Hungarian adult World No1 player, and defending her title at WTA Finals. Timi talked about past events and the tasks before her at the press conference in Budapest, where her new coach, Nick Horvat was also present.
– We can say it was an interesting year! It is also said that the beginning and the end of a book are really interesting. At the beginning of the season, We had a Grand Slam victory after many decades and made an incredible feeling. At the end of the year, I managed to defend the world title in Singapore. It’s incredible, amazing and dreamy! For the first time, I was lucky enough to bring my family: it was an incredible experience. The organization was amazing, the WTA staff did everything for our comfort. During my life, I saw many other things, but I did not like such suites or anything else. They an honor of our work, knowing that in Singapore only the eight best individual players and the eight best pairs can play. My mother has never traveled anywhere, so I could see for the first time how happy she was with the reception.
In October 2017, Timi celebrated in Singapore with Andrea Hlaváčková (Czech Republic), so she became the first Hungarian Champ at the WTA Finals. After the final, it became official that the double did not continue to cooperate. Since the beginning of the 2018 season, Kristina Mladenovic has become Timi’s partner again, with whom she has had great success as a junior and then in the Wimbledon Final in 2015.
– We’ve made an incredible way of preparation to this year’s WTA Finals. Every day We talked about what’s needed for success and therefore what We have to do. It’s so wonderful that We could do this, because We played without the peresence of our coaches. This is our absolute merit! For the previous part of the year, We have less exercise in doubles. Now Kiki played extremelly well, though I’ve seen her quite a lot at the net. This was due to the fact that for five days I got the ball off the T line. It did not matter if I hit Kiki, as she often hit me. We did a lot of work to improve our weaknesses.
At this year’s Singapore WTA Finals, Timi and Kiki won 6:0, 6:2 in the first round for the semifinal against Gabriela Dabrowski (Canada) and Yifan Xu (China). Then came the “revenge” for the final of the US Open, as Ashleigh Barty (Australia) and Coco Vandeweghe (USA) were on the other side of the net. The Hungarian-French doubles triumphed 6:7 (5-7), 6:3, 10-8. Then in the final, Timi and Kiki surpassed this year’s Roland Garros and Wimbledon championships, year-ending World No1 pair of Barbora Krejčikova and Kateřina Siniakova (both Czech Republic), 6:4, 7:5.
– This event is very different from the other major tournaments. We play in a format that is not in Grand Slams. For a decisive set, the super tie-break comes in which anything can happen. For example, in the semifinals we led 6-1, and then the result was 6-7. The US Open final did not look like that, the whole process lasted longer. We learned a lot from that match and We used it now in the semifinal against Ashleigh Barty and Coco Vandeweghe.
Timi spoke in detail at the press conference about her relationship with Kiki, about the effects of shared experiences and conversations.
– Over the last few years, our relationship has improved a lot and our relationship has been built up. After the first match, I told, that when We had a free day after both lost in singles at one of the Chinese tournaments, We went together for breakfast and stayed at the same table. We did not stand until 6 o’clock P.M., then We went to the washroom. Then We returned, we had dinner together, We spent a total of 13 hours together. Nowadays, We spend a lot of time together outside the court, also. It is rare for anyone to have a good friendship at the WTA Tour, so We have to appreciate this relationship!”
Timi closed her collaboration with Thomas Drouet this September. The player and the coach from Monaco worked from the spring of 2014 and celebrated many great successes.
– I also started talking that this year’s season was interesting, because I had a great start for the season, and then it stopped. And that was not the first time. Until May I played very well, I had a lot of good matches, but then I stopped. About five years ago, I started working with Thomas Drouet, I was almost a teenager, since then My thinking has changed, I expect people to do it. That is why I felt like I had to go further, because I had little to say about positive thinking. In My current situation, I’ve been looking for people to help the Timi Team! I don’t want the hear every time, how good I can be, but how good I am!
Thomas Drouet was replaced by Nick (Nikola) Horvat, who previously worked with Mario Ancić and Donna Vekić, and also worked for the Croatian youngters.
– First, his attitude caught her. I felt how motivated he is. It is well known that I like to work with people who like people as they are because of their personality. I like to spend a lot of time with My team, it’s important to be good outside of the court, too! I know Nick from the past, he was very nice then. At our first meeting in Budapest, My whole family was there, they had the impression that he is very sympathetic. When I first went to Sopron after that meeting, my sister’s friend said after three sentences that I’m not been so happy for a long time when We talk about tennis.
|– I know my enormous responsibility. But at the same time I am extremely proud of the results that Timi have been achieved so far! I am very motivated to succeed in our cooperation. I feel the weight of the task, I will add 110 percent to this project. Tennis is a very complex sport, not just that I say it, but all the experts you are asking. To achieve success, it takes a lot of time on the court. It is also important for Me to be in good relationships with my player, in all areas there is a good consistency. When I first met Timi, she took Me with her personality. I like the background and the education, since I’ve been able to get to know her whole family. It was always important for Me to know the person with whom I worked and what their background was. I also have to add: I like Hungary very much, the Hungarian people. This may be because I partly have a Hungarian affiliation. I have Hungarian roots on my father’s branch.|
Timi will start preparing for the 2019 season on November 19th. Unlike in previous years, the substantial part of the work-outs will be in Budapest, at the Budai Tennis Centrum.
– Our first training session was in Linz, close to the end of the season. So I’m not practicing eight hours a day, but seven hours a day. Nick was “kicked out” the first training … It was a tough practice, so I called the afternoon work-out, because I was so tired. We have been preparing for a few days in Budapest at the Budai Tennis Centrum. Much of My winter preparation will be on BTC. The foundation will begin on November 19th.
Towards the end of the press conference, the new coach talked about his Hungarian player.
– Of course, We are very proud of Timi’s achievements, which she achieved in doubles. And this will be the case in the future. Of course it would be difficult to ignore the doubles in the future, which was not the case. We want to keep the current level. But the main focus will certainly be on the singles, because Timi believes in it and I also believe that she had great future in it, also.