Sunday, June 16, 2013

Getting to know: Anastasia Grymalska

Today we are proud to introduce Italian youngster and hope for the future Anastasia Grymalska. Of Ukrainian origins, the girl has won 10 ITF titles, all of them on the clay of 10k tournaments, as to remind us which one is her favourite surface. This year she won one title in Mallorca, where she conquered one more final and then only few weeks ago reached her first final in a 25k event in Brescia. Just there, she was interviewed by Michele Galoppini, from, whose interview prepared with my help, is here translated in English.

How do you feel about being in Brescia?

I really like it, last year I made the Quarterfinals, defeated by the eventual finalist (Beatriz Garcia Vidagany), who now plays together with me in the team events. This year I am playing well again, so I hope I can go further.

How would you rate this first half of the year?

At first I tried to played a bit more on fast courts, but it didn’t end up too well, then I won a title in Mallorca and I made it to the final in the following week. Nonetheless, up to a month ago it wasn’t really going that well, but starting from Caserta I am playing much better. Last week in Maribor I played well and I could get a Special Exempt to play this week in the maindraw, since I was the 2nd seed in the qualies!


What are your goals for the second half of the season now?

Well, the main goal is to make it to US Open qualies.

So being around 220-230 by then?


You have already had the chance to play a WTA event, like in Palermo. What do you think about them? What’s different from ITFs?

In Palermo I had one of the best experiences in my life, since I played with Flavia Pennetta. Surely it’s a completely different environment, let’s say that it seems like a 5 stars hotel, while ITFs are more like 2 stars, but I ain’t complaining! It’s just different, as for how they treat you as for the organization.

Do you follow the results of the main tour?

 Yes, yes.

Who’s your fave player?

I really like Sara Errani, because her game-style is similar to mine. But I also like Stosur. I mean, I really like the players who think on court and use tactics too. I like the players who fight and suffer on court.

Who do you think it’s the strongest player?

Serena of course! When she’s on, she’s unplayable.

Who don’t you like?

Well, I don’t know personally many players, so I can’t tell. Certainly I can’t suffer players who don’t think on court and can’t really make you understand what they are going to do, because they don’t know either.

If you could steal a shot from a fellow player, who would you steal: -the serve?

Let me think…Stosur’s I guess, her kick is amazing.
-the forehand?
Roberta Vinci’s, it’s such a fluid movement.
-the backhand?
I really like Jankovic’s backhand, such a solid shot.
Once again to Roberta.

Who is your tennis idol?

In Bastad I had the chance to dine with Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, it was at the gala’s night even if I had just lost in the qualifying rounds. I had never talked to them before, but they were really keen: humble, funny and easy-going. Roby did even give me tickets for Istanbul’s master. They are such nice persons, both on and off court.

What do you like and don’t of the life of a professional tennis player?

I really like the life of the pro, as much as I love training. I could stay out there the whole day working and improving; my coach tells me that often I would go for too much and tells: “Enough, you’d better rest!” At the end of the day it’s a sign of insecurity, I mean, going for more and more. But then it’s hard to keep solid friendships or relationships, but as long as I can express myself it’s all good. So I guess tennis doesn’t help your social life, but as long as I am ok with myself it’s all good, that’s what means the most.

And what if you didn’t become a tennis pro?

Eh…sometimes I thought about it, mostly during some crisis and I think that the easiest thing would have been studying to become a translator or a touristic guide, since I can speak English, Italian and Russian, as I was born in Kiev, but as for now, I won’t think about it.

Since you are always travelling around the world, what’s your opinion about international food?

I never complain about food, differently from what many players do, nor for things like overcooked pasta.

What’s your opinion about the “screamers” on court? Do they bother you?

Honestly, I have no problems with them, screams don’t annoy me, sometimes I grunt too when I am in crisis. I probably believe it annoys the crowd more than it annoys me, opponents’ grunts might actually pump me up.

How’s your relation with umpires? Do you always accept their decisions or do you go for talks at times?

Probably a few years ago, whenever someone would make a bad call I would waste a few points overthinking about it, but now I don’t do this anymore, I accept it and move on.

What’s your favourite curse?

Whom to? (Laughs) No, no, I don’t use them much, maybe if I make mistakes I say something nasty to myself or scream: “ รจ uno scandalo” (that’s scandalous) or “che cazzo!” (what the fuck?), but that’s it.

Would you tell us something awkward or funny that occurred to you on court, like yesterday you hit the net with your head?

Luckily yesterday I didn’t get hurt! But nothing too bad there, the first time I played here in Brescia though my opponent got a penalty point and I don’t even remember why, because I was just too shocked by that happening as it was the first time I saw that!

Do you follow or play any other sport?

Not really, I practice some yoga every now and then. Now I have a mental trainer too, so I’ve got no time to spend outside from tennis.

One last question, has a tennis player ever hit on you? Maybe a fellow girl?

Unluckily no. But it’s well known that there are more and more relationships between girls and so woman-woman couples. As for boys, since I always play women tournaments it’s hard, but next week I am playing in Padua, which is a combined event! We usually have to wait for Slams, that’s why my goal is the US Open!

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