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Candy Reid's Tennis Mailbag

Ana Ivanovic
Ana Ivanovic: "I really love to compete and feel the excitement at tournaments."

(CNN) -- World Sport's Candy Reid puts your questions to Serbian tennis star Ana Ivanovic.

Candy Reid: Ana, thanks for your time. When did you start playing tennis and why?

Ana Ivanovic: When I was five I saw an advert on television for a tennis center in Belgrade. I memorized the number and asked my mother to take me. I had to ask her many times but finally then she took me for a lesson! I really fell in love with the game and my father bought me my first racket for my next birthday.

CR: Who are your best friends on tour?

AI: Because I am still quite new to the tour I am still making friends but I get on very well with Daniela Hantuchova, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Sanja Ancic and Maria Kirilenko.

CR: What's the best thing about being a professional tennis player?

AI: I really love to compete and feel the excitement at tournaments. I also love to visit new places and experience new cultures. I think we are very lucky that we can do something we love for our jobs and travel the world.

CR: And the worst?

AI: Being away from home can be difficult. My mother travels with me but I miss my father and my brother very much.

CR: What are your views on the equal prize money issue?

AI: This isn't something I feel very strongly about. I don't really want to complain because we get paid well and I am very grateful for this. But probably they should give women the same as men. Three-set matches for women can be tough too.

CR: Do you like the Hawk-eye instant replay system?

AI: I have only played one match with Hawk-Eye. I found it a little bit distracting, I think it will take some time to get used to. Because you have a limited number of challenges you are sometimes thinking, "Should I challenge?" because you do not want to lose your challenges and not be able to use them on an important point.

CR: And finally, how do you think Serbia and Montenegro will do in the upcoming football World Cup?

AI: I don't really follow football! But I will probably watch some matches and I hope we can do well. My father is a big football fan and he told me that we have a difficult group, with Argentina and the Netherlands, so it's going to be difficult!

CR: Here are a few questions from your fans!

Q: Dear Ms Ivanovic: First of all I would like to thank you and your team for the signed photo my daughter received the other day, I requested it a few weeks back and gave it to Clara last week as a surprise, she was thrilled!!! Your career has taken off in the last two years, never the less it must have been the fruit of many years of dedication and hard work. Can you tell me when you realized this was the path (pro tennis player) you wanted for your life? And at what point you realized that you were really going to do this? The next few years will probably be the hardest in your career, as going up the next places into the top 10 must be very hard. We look for your results every day, and whenever we can, we watch you play. Good luck, keep that forehand sharp and keep winning.
Ernesto Caldwell

AI: Hey Ernesto! I am glad your daughter likes the photo! Thank you very much for your support. It was really when I was 12 that I started thinking that I could become a professional tennis player. That was when I got a manager and a personal coach. That really helped me a lot and I started to play some international tournaments. Regards, Ana

Q: Dear Ana, who was your favorite player growing up and who do you like watching now?
Anne Mann, Dubai

AI: Hi Anne. When I was growing up I liked to watch Monica Seles and Andre Agassi. Now my favorite player to watch is Federer! Regards, Ana

Q: Hello Ana Ivanovic, You are such a great player. I would like to know which surface you like to play on most and what career path you would follow if you were not a professional tennis player.
Jose C

AI: Hi Jose. Thank you for the compliment. I like all surfaces. Probably my favorite is hardcourt, but I feel I can well play on all surfaces. If I was not a professional tennis player I would like to do something with languages. I like languages very much. Regards, Ana

-- Do you have a question about tennis for World Sport Anchor Candy Reid? E-mail

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