Vera Zvonareva: Not afraid to be me

 

Not just a pretty face or world No 3 tennis star, vera Zvonareva has a degree in physical education from the Russian State University and is studying for her second one in In ternational Relations and Economics. There was no better person to write a guest column for this week’s Daily Deuce. Sport stars or celebrities and a fine line in between, Zvonareva gives us her thoughts.

  • By Vera Zvonareva, special to Gulf News
  • Published: 00:00 February 17, 2011
  • Tabloid

Vera Zvonareva
  • Vera Zvonareva
  • Image Credit: Oliver Clarke/ Gulf News

I'm a perfectionist so I always want to give 100 per cent. But sometimes it can be hard to decide whether that should be on court or off court.

When it comes to my life as a sportsperson the challenges are more incredible than many would believe.

Juggling matches, training, flights, diet and even picking up my laundry can be difficult.

But what about the other side — my fans, the media and giving back to the people who support me? This is the side which can sometimes be blurred into making celebrities and some players concentrate on this more than the other.

The funny thing is, I don't judge the players or sports stars who look for media attention. It's just a matter of motivation.

For some, being on the front cover of a magazine is what keeps them focused on winning and for others it's staying away from the spotlight which pushes them forward. So I don't think there is a right or wrong answer. The most important thing is to know yourself and be sure of who you are and what you believe in. When you come to a junction you have to make a choice whether you do that interview or not.

I also believe there is a big side of talking to the media which isn't about getting column inches. Sometimes I think we have to do interviews, sign autographs and have pictures taken as a way of giving back to the fans. That's important.

"I also think it's a two way thing. The media must respect when enough is enough and give us our privacy. You learn how much to give as you get older. When you are young you give too much. It has to be a balanced relationship."

You have to know where to draw the line because everyone wants a piece of you.

One of the hardest things to do is to finish a match when you've lost and keep a smile on your face while you sign an autograph for a youngster who has waited patiently for you for hours.

I will always be a girl who doesn't need the attention but I'll always give what I can for my fans.

They want to know who I am, see I'm a normal person who does normal things. I have a personality and I'm not afraid to show it.

On Matt Damon

Matt Damon

If she could interview anyone it would be: "Matt Damon, without a doubt. I don't know what it is about him but I love him. He's the only person who would really have mereaching for a celebrity magazine or newspaper. Otherwise I like to read about international affairs or the sport of course. I like to keep up to date with world issues."

Statistics

  • Name: Zvonareva Vera Igorevna
  • Date of birth: September 7, 1984
  • Birthplace: Moscow
  • Residence: Moscow
  • Height: 1.70m
  • Weight: 59kg
  • Plays: Right-handed
  • Status: Pro (September 2000)
  • Coach: Sergey Demekhin
  • Marital Status: Not Married

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