Women’s Tennis: Getting to know Julia Goerges
Sonyericssonwtatour.com caught up with Julia during the BGL Luxembourg Open, where she competed on a new career-high ranking of No.76 – which means she’ll finish the season in the Top 100 for the first time.
Tell us about your family.
JG: My father works in insurance and my mom helps him with that – the office is at our house. I also have a sister, Maike, who is 32. Actually she’s my half-sister, which you might guess if you saw us together… I am 5?11 and dark-haired and she is short and blonde! We share the same father. She also works in insurance, but not in the same office as our dad.
How did you get into tennis?
JG: I started to when I was five-and-a-half, when my parents took me to a local club where they played. As I grew older I always looked to watch tennis on TV, I was a real fan, and it came to a point where I asked my parents how we could do it. They wanted me to finish school first, but of course I played junior tournaments as well.
As a youngster, did you have a tennis idol?
JG: Martina Hingis. She didn’t play like everyone else, she was always changing the rhythm, playing drop shots and so on. She didn’t hit the ball the hardest but she was clever and thought about where she was putting the ball. When she retired and then came back to the Top 10, I thought it was really something special.
And, of course, Roger Federer plays tennis as if from another world.
What do you consider your strengths as a player?
JG: My serve and my forehand help me a lot.
And what do you need to improve to go to the next level?
JG: I need to play more consistently. I can have good wins, but I need to keep it going for weeks and months at a time. It’s partly a matter of belief.
What’s your tennis memory to date?
JG: In terms of the occasion and emotions it has to be my first round match at Wimbledon in 2008. I beat (No.22 seed) Katarina Srebotnik 16-14 in the third set… the match lasted 3 hours 41 minutes! It was also a good feeling to win the doubles with Vladimira Uhlirova at Portoroz this year – it was my first Tour title.
If you could steal a shot from another player, what would it be?
JG: The backhand of Jelena Jankovic.
Do you have a favorite surface?
Favorite tournament or city?
JG: The Australian Open. I’d love to have a few weeks to travel around the country properly.
What do you like most about life on the Tour? Dislike?
JG: I like being able to experience other countries and cultures, to see how people live and work. I’m mostly on the road with my coach, Sascha Nensel, but if my mom is with me we’ll try and do some sightseeing. Spain and Mexico are top of my list. But I’m the sort of girl who likes to be at home, to see all the familiar places where I grew up. So sometimes the travel is too much.
If not tennis…
JG: I really think I’d have been a receptionist in a hotel! Growing up, I was always fascinated by computers and things like cash registers in supermarkets.
What do you like to do outside tennis?
JG: I’m a biathlon freak. If I can help it I don’t miss a minute of it when it’s on television and would love to try it myself. In fact, last year for my birthday my coaches gave me a voucher for a three hour training camp, where you ski and professionals show you how to shoot. Unfortunately I had to leave for Australia soon after, so I haven’t done it yet, but hope to soon.
I also like the usual things: going out with friends, seeing movies, listening to music – I like Blue and Rihanna – and shopping.
Speaking of birthdays, you turn 21 in November… any plans to celebrate?
JG: I’ll be playing an ITF event in Ortisei, Italy, so it depends how that’s going. But afterwards I plan to spend some time in N