WTA Tour

Sabatini lost to avoid media

2013-10-18 21:00
Gabriela Sabatini (Getty Images)

Buenos Aires - Retired Argentine tennis star Gabriela Sabatini, a former world number three,has  said in remarks published on Friday that she had lost matches on purpose in her youth to avoid reporters.

"When I was younger and thought that I had to talk after winning a tournament, I often lost in the semifinals so I did not have to. It was that bad!" Sabatini told the Argentine newspaper La Nacion.

"I was very introverted. I had some issues at school because I was very inward-looking," she said.

Sabatini, now 43, said her shyness was a major problem.

"I got very nervous at that point. But at the same time I was very competitive and I got frustrated when I did not win," she said.

"I might lose the first set, when I was little, and I gave up on the match just because I was so angry that I could not bear having lost the first set."

The winner of the 1990 US Open was widely regarded as one of the most talented and charismatic players of the 1980s and 1990s.

Although she was never world number one, she twice came close to the top spot sport and she kept up a solid rivalry with Steffi Graf.

"I think my fame and my public profile had something to do with the fact that I did not become world number one.

"To be so famous would also have been a problem if I had been world number one," Sabatini said.

"I loved playing tennis. I loved it since the first day I grabbed a racket, I was crazy about it.

"One never knows what comes behind that or with that.

"I loved to play, I was competitive, I wanted to win, that was all I knew. In the first few years tennis is a game. Later, it becomes a job," she said.

Sabatini, who retired in 1996, lives in her native Buenos Aires, although she often travels to Europe and the United States for business, including her line of perfumes.

Read more on:    tennis

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Sport Talk


Which is your favourite Grand Slam of the year?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.