Romanian Cirstea balances books and rackets in Paris (French Open diary)

June 2nd, 2009 - 6:21 pm ICT by IANS  

Paris, June 2 (DPA) Romanian teenager Sorana Cristea probably won’t have time this week to touch her high school books as she faces Australian Samantha Stosur in a French Open quarter-final.
The 19-year-old is coping with her surprise showing while also completing her studies and travelling the world on the WTA circuit. Despite her transient lifestyle, the smiling Romanian says she tries to keep up a normal school regime.

“I’m going to a normal high school with normal classes and the teachers,” she said after rallying to upset the fifth seed Jelena Jankovic. “When I’m not there, they know I’m in tournaments - now they can see me on TV. They know I’m not somewhere else.”

Cirstea, who faces late-summer exams, adds: “I’m going to finish high school this year and then it’s going to be easier.”

She said her favourite subjects are English, which she speaks near-flawlessly, and geography.

“It’s nice just to have something different to focus on besides tennis. And of course, I like geography because I travel so much,” she said.

“I read a lot. I’m reading all these Romanian authors because I have to study for my exam.”

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Jankovic struggling again to find her game, fitness

The bad times seem to have returned for Jelena Jankovic after last year’s number one was dumped out of the French Open.

The Serb who never counts herself fully fit, complained of pain in her toe and abdomen during a loss in the fourth round to Romanian Soroan Cirstea.

“I had something with my toe, it was hurting me inside. But I was able to forget about it. I also have pain in my abdomen, but when I’m on the court I try to just forget all the pains that I have. I just try to do the best I can and win.”

Now ranked fifth, she said she is searching for her confidence. “I need it for the important moments of the match. I need to go for my shots and have that belief that they’re going to go in.”

The Serb called her game in the first part of the season “a catastrophe”.

“It was really painful even to be on court. I have to try to keep working and try to find my game for the future.”

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