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December 13, 2010

Off-season Blog – 12/13/10

Filed under: Dinara's Blog — admin @ 4:12 pm

Hello my dear fans,

It has been a really long time since I updated you guys about myself!!!!

Please forgive me for that, I will try to keep you updated as often as I can. I also left twitter BUT I have GOOD news for you because I’m thinking of coming back there!!! Many of you were asking why I left twitter. It was not easy for me when I needed everyone’s support after losing to Kimiko Date, and some people posted some not very nice comments, which I think wasn’t fair. But let’s not talk about that let’s think about good news that I’m thinking of getting back in touch with all of you!

So let’s start here!!!!

Well it was one of the worst years of my career. Many things have happened and it feels like my life changed 180 degrees from being #2 in the world to #63. Starting with my injury, of course and everything that followed. Those were very tough moments for me but I want to thank my real fans who have always supported me!!

Let’s look back period per period, starting with the months January to May:
Before my injury in Australia, I did really good pre-season preparation, working really hard. But after my match against Maria the next morning the tests (MRI and CT scan) showed that there was a stress fracture on L5S1 and I also had a rupture of the muscle. You can imagine how I felt, I don’t even know how I managed to pack my bag and sit in the plane because I couldn’t move my back and I had so much pain. I took 3 months off, I was doing treatment every day but of course I couldn’t play any tennis not even conditioning training. I was only doing biking for 45 min and some exercises for the shoulders and a little bit for the legs which were not putting any pressure on my lumbar.  I was doing every month an MRI to check on my back and was going to the tennis court to see if it was any better. Until April I was not able to go on court without feeling pain in my back. Finally, when it was getting better, I started to hit for 15 minutes at a time.

Basically, before the start of the clay court season I was not able to practice much. However, the decision was taken with my ex-team to go ahead and participate in the events in Stuttgart, Rome and Madrid. It didn’t go well at all :-((

This resulted in a big crisis between me and my team, which resulted in ending our cooperation.

The split with my ex team before the French Open:
Well, I heard many opinions about this matter! After I took the decision in Madrid to split with my ex team everybody was asking WHY? Unfortunately, I cannot give an answer to this but it was one of the toughest decisions which I ever had to make; it was the worst moment of my life. Today I would really like to thank Zeljko, Dejan and Tomislav (who helped me through rehab in Croatia). To Zeljko and Dejan I want to thank them a lot for everything that we have achieved as a TEAM. We went from nothing to the very top. Pity we haven’t won a Grand Slam together as a team but we’ve been in 3 finals and also the finals of the Olympic Games. What we achieved I don’t think that many teams have achieved in one and half years.

My New Argentinean Team:
Taking the decision during the Madrid combined event I spoke a lot with my brother and he suggested that I work for a few weeks with Hernan Gumy (Hernan was an ex coach of my brother) who could help with his experience. So we agreed to work together from mid May till the French Open. In fact, Hernan was working already with Ernests Gulbis but I was allowed to integrate their group. I would like to thank Ernests for that.  This helped me because I felt lost in the tennis world with the feeling that everything was starting from scratch for me!

After a while Hernan spoke to me about Gaston Etlis.  I could remember that I had played mixed doubles against him (of course I beat him…).  So we started our cooperation at the French Open. The start was anything but positive as I lost first round to…Kimiko Date…..couldn’t start worse. The French Open has always been a special event in my heart.  I have had incredible feelings and memories there. Losing so badly hurt me a lot.

We decided to stay in Paris and prepare for grass court events. The Racing Club has a great grass court. I think it is the most beautiful club which I have ever been to. From Paris we went to Holland where I also lost in the first round to Rybarikova. It was also very disappointing but she was better that day and after that match (maybe because of the grass courts or the length of the match), my back pain reappeared. Practicing for Wimbledon the pain increased and forced me to pull out of that prestigious event. Another setback!:-(( I had nothing left to do and decided to go back to Moscow for 10 days.

It’s always nice to go back home after a long travel time! I like to spend time with my friends and my family.  I have my own apartment there.  There I like to relax and cook, not only for me but also for my friends and family. I prepare cakes and nice sweet things.

After 10 days resting in Moscow, I left for Buenos Aires accompanied by my mother. It was time to practice for the North American events, called the US Open Series.

I was there for 3 weeks but had to start really very slowly. Because of my back, I had to take time for the rehab; doing about 2 hours in the morning of stretching together with exercises for the core. It was so boring but it was a MUST!!!!!  So again I started to practice very slowly with tennis step by step!!! At the end of my 3rd week I played some points and moved around the court more or less pain free depending on the day and on my physical condition.

Trip to America-US Open Series starting:
Starting with Stanford and again Kimiko (ha ha ha). I lost again but that day she was really better than me!  She played some amazing points in the important moments. The message for me: keep up the hard work because you are not there yet and far away from your best level.

San Diego – my first win after 5 first round exits. You cannot imagine the joy I felt, guys. Some days I thought I could never win a match again! Radwanska beat me next round. She played very good and I needed some matches to get into a rhythm.

Slowly, slowly I started to win one, two rounds. Another sad moment was the US Open where I lost against Daniela but she played very good that day!

After NY I went back to Moscow and I practiced a little bit with my brother. It was so much fun because he is a tough coach but still my brother. He even broke a racket practicing with me. Some habits never go away. Funny.  I enjoyed it a lot.  Thank you Marat for taking time for me.

Trip to Asia:
First time in Seoul. Impressive city and friendly people, also at the event.  Thank you to the tournament director for giving me a wildcard.

Tokyo and Beijing.  Well, these were my last tournaments of the year. Enough of 2010, let’s look at the future. I had to put aside the last first round loses there as well. Too many losses this year.

Back home and vacations:
It was so nice to be back home in Moscow because all this traveling and living in hotels gets you tired.  Particularly when you keep on losing. I needed this break!

What did I do during this time? Simply nothing, just enjoying it. Again cooking for friends and family. Some of the desserts I know how to do include carrot cake, apple pie, tiramisu and lemon pie. But also did lamb (not a desert…). I went to the movie theaters and simply enjoyed time with family and friends. But vacations are not forever, so on November 1st I packed my bags and started to work hard again!

I am now in Buenos Aires, as I decided to take a long pre-season preparation time. I need it! Daily program consists of physical training (conditioning and back) but also tennis. 

I’m here with my mother. She is always with me when I’m practicing and soon my father will be coming as well, and even my brother. I am very happy to see them all again, as I miss them often during the year. Apart from practicing, me and my mother went to watch polo. The team that we’ve been supporting, Chapolefue, lost, but still it was a great match. For me they are the best. Thank you to Eduardo el “RUSO” for inviting me to his match.

Then we went to visit Tandil. A small city from where tennis champions originated. It is a very beautiful city.  I don’t remember when was the last time I did so much sightseeing! If you love cheese you would find Epoca de Queso a paradise.

I’m going be in Argentina till the end of the month and from here I’m going straight to Auckland. My first tournament in 2011 and I am looking forward to a new season!

My wish is to be able to play a full year healthy and where I can work hard to come back!

Dear Fans, that’s all for now. I hope you enjoyed reading my blog.
I love you all,

PS: if you have any questions, write to me on twitter.  I promise I will answer.


  1. ay que bueno no solamente que este de vuelta si no que también muy positiva… suerte para este año y feliz navidad para ti, tu equipo y tu familia…

    Comment by monikitax — December 13, 2010 @ 8:27 pm

  2. welcome back Dinara. I wish you all the best!

    Comment by -junie- — December 13, 2010 @ 10:37 pm

  3. Thanks for giving your fans such a detailed insight in to your season. I wish you all the best and good health for 2011

    Comment by annie_121 — December 14, 2010 @ 3:34 am

  4. hi Dina

    Thank you for sharing this with us. I think you are absoluteley amazing,you have achieved so much already, from the first day i watched you play against Jankovic at the Beijing Olympics i new you were my favourite player. Unfortunately the world we live in has some nasty people, you will always get them criticizing everything, but i think that you are able to take that in your stride and focus on the positives. On court as well, you are so feisty and tenacious, you need to never give up, you are a fighter and dont forget that. I pray that you have good health always, looking forward to seeing you play again and hopefully hearing from you.

    take care


    Comment by ziykh — December 14, 2010 @ 7:09 am

  5. This was great to read. I thought of you all 2010 and hoped you were healing in mind, body and spirit. I hope 2011 will start off well for you but also that you are patient and success will follow.

    I wish you were still on FACEBOOK. Miss you there.

    Comment by sunny — December 15, 2010 @ 12:24 am

  6. Hi, girl :
    First of all,welcome to come back !it has been a long time before we can see you again !you look so beautiful in the picture ,i think the black coat is very suitable for you !
    the new season will begin ,i hope you have been well prepared for it ~what is more you can have a healthy season ~
    so ,girl ,please be more confident and positive to start the new season~~come on ,dinara ~~

    Give my best wishes to you!

    Comment by xiahlwi — December 15, 2010 @ 1:23 am

  7. Dear Dina!

    Thank you for this blog. I read, very interesting this blog. I wish you good health. I cheering for you even better. I’m with you all tournament.
    I’m very happy to see you on court again.
    Good luck in Auckland!

    Comment by Sanka — December 15, 2010 @ 9:44 am

  8. Thank you so much Dinara for updated us on what was/is going on with your games.
    I am glad that you appreciate us as ur fans and posted a very nice blog for us, We really miss you so much. I always checked your fb pages and twitter but there’s nothing much that you wrote. Sometimes i even google to get any news about ‘dinara Safina’ i wondered hows you condition, and etc. I am one of your big fan that I can say that i wont give up to support you as long as you play tennis. It was really great to see you compete n i really enjoyed it so much. I wish you will stay healthy and keep fighting and most important NEVER GIVE UP. I am from a small country Malaysia but believe me, if i could, i will give the whole of world just to support you and make you happy. We should ignored all the negatives comments cause people who did that only because they are jealous of you. I wish you a happy new year may Allah bless you.with lottttssssssss of LOVE, (HIDAYAH)

    Comment by norhidayah — December 15, 2010 @ 12:39 pm

  9. Hello Dinara;
    I am so glad to hear about you. Time to time I have checked out your website to see news and disappointed that it was nothing there. I missed you so much. I understood though how hard it could have been after that bad year of 2010. But, head up!!! As you have said once “after rain sunshine comes always”!!!!!!!!!! And, you are our sunshine. I was so mad at the media how badly they treated you. I thought that was the most outrageous, unfair treatment ever for a number 1 player ,or matter of fact, any player what you have received from them.
    I admire your fighting spirit. I never stop believing in you. I wish you a very good season. Good luck in Auckland. I am looking forward to see you playing again. Stay healthy, and indeed ignore those nasty people who do not believe in you and try to drag you down. The positive people are your real, loyal fans, always.
    With love and support,

    Comment by Julianna — December 15, 2010 @ 11:09 pm

  10. Дорогая Динарочка!

    Всего тебе самого лучшего в новом сезоне, болею за тебя всегда, переживаю и жду твоего возврашения на корты!!! Главное тебе пожелаю в новом сезоне это наслаждения от тенниса и крепкого здоровья! Мы твои истинные болельшики ждем тебя на корте с улыбкой и отличным настроением и болеем за тебя не смотря на твой рейтинг!!! Так что не обрашай внимания на всяких уродов, которые болеют только когда ты на высоте, мы всегда с тобой. А не видела в твоем расписании турниров в Канаде, но если все же приедишь, будем болеть за тебя всем сердцем!!!!

    С огромной симпатией, Ира!

    Comment by capitaine — December 16, 2010 @ 2:19 am

  11. You should absolutely disregard the bitter and jealous comments and people. You are an amazing person and sportsman; those who bash you anonymously are just fake people.

    Stay healthy and have a great 2011!

    Comment by grenard — December 16, 2010 @ 5:35 am

  12. Dinara, could you remember me? I was an official potographer in Hansol Korea Open. I was very happy to meet you. While you were playing the game, I watched all of your match. Unfortunatly, the accidents was happened in a low to me. I had a traffic accident after the Korea Open. Then I have a poor back and neck pain too. I cannot do anything now. I think it’s very tough to get through it. But I want you would win the all game since next year. I believe you will get well soon. Of course me too. You are my hope Dinara!!! Let’s GO DINARA♥

    Comment by leanaaaa — December 18, 2010 @ 9:32 am

  13. Dear Dinara,
    Thank you so much for that honest update. People can be so mean, especially in the animosity of the internet. They are just ignorant people who don’t have a life. Try to feel sorry for them instead of feeling sad.

    It’s nice to hear you so positive about 2011. You always seem really sweet and kind. I met you in Holland last year, I’m a pharmacy student and I work at the Unicef Open each year. I helped you with your sudoku. Your tennis career wasn’t going really well at that point, but you were still so nice. You posed for pictures and signed autographs. Other players should take your example.

    I hope 2011 brings you happiness and health. Good luck next season and I hope to see you again at the Unicef Open.

    xox louise

    Comment by louise — December 18, 2010 @ 5:29 pm

  14. Dinara you are a true champion it is not your fault you had injuries. You are a great player and you will get to the top again because you believe in yourself. I believe in you as all your fans do. Wishing you a happy christmas and I know 2011 will be a great year for you.

    Comment by Alfredo — December 18, 2010 @ 8:53 pm

  15. Hello Dinara,

    Thank you so much for sharing your feeling with us. I keep checking your website for any updated news from you since you withdrew from Linz tournament. 2010 may be the worst year in your carreer. But look at the bright sight, it teaches you a lot on life lessons. We always support you whether rain or shine. Don’t worry. ;-))

    You look physically fit from latest photos. Hope you are strong enough for the New Year comeback. (Both physical & Mental)

    Wishing you healthy & happy all through 2011.

    Looking forward to seeing you shine on court.

    Comment by your thai fan — December 21, 2010 @ 10:09 pm

  16. Hi Dinara
    You are simply the best. Everybody goes through a bad patch. But you know where you went wrong and that is a bonus. You will retain No 1 again and all your fans believe in you. I love watching you play you are so skilful and you can beat anyone. You are so honest in your why did not play great in 2010 and I could feel your frustration when you should have won certain matches.But 2011 will be the rise of the Dinara that everybody knows and you will be Champion again. May I wish you all the best for 2011 to a true hero.

    Alfredo from Scotland

    Comment by Alfredo — December 25, 2010 @ 5:36 pm

  17. Dinara im so sorry for all the pain you have had to endure because of your injuries. Im glad you are looking forward to 2011. Im looking forwardseeing you play. You are an inspiration to me. You keep perservering and work nso hard. Im glad you have had such fun times with yoiru family and friends. Thank you for sharing your story with us., I will keep you in pryaer this tesnnis season. all the best, Diane Silva

    Comment by grandmadiane — December 26, 2010 @ 11:09 pm

  18. Just keep doing what you’re doing and never give up.

    I wish all the best for 2011!

    Comment by philtennisleague — December 26, 2010 @ 11:38 pm

  19. You are a delight to watch and I wish you Good Luck for your matches in Auckland as I so want you to win this tournament. Play with passion, determination and enjoyment, trust in your ability and win Dinara because you can. You and your brother Marat bring excitement and passion back to tennis, keep it up and Go-for-Gold.

    Comment by 10sgal — January 3, 2011 @ 9:06 pm

  20. Great tennis and a good start to your tennis year, keep up the positive, you are an awesome player and I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon watching you and wish you every success this year. I hope you enjoyed your New Zealand visit, Good Luck Dinara and please ask Marat to get-back-on-the-court, we miss him.

    Comment by 10sgal — January 4, 2011 @ 12:51 am

  21. Still one of my favourite. Thanks for blogging. We love ya 😉

    Comment by tosin — January 19, 2011 @ 12:09 am

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