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Tennis : Young Venezuelan Misses L.A. Draw, but Has Promising Future

September 17, 1989|Thomas Bonk

It was a soft-core fight. Navratilova started the mud rolling when she questioned Graf's stoicism on court.

"She doesn't show anything," Navratilova said. "I just hope she enjoys it. . . . I don't get any sense of emotion when she's playing. I'm sure that she's feeling something.

"I don't know what she feels. I don't really speak to her that much, rather she doesn't speak to me. I don't have any idea what's going on in her mind or her heart."

Then Navratilova outlined Graf's conversation practices.

"She doesn't talk to anybody, really," Navratilova said. "She sort of runs in the locker room, changes real quick and doesn't talk to anybody. One player in the locker room was saying 'Come on, Steffi, smile.' She just ran out."

OK, that's one version. Graf has another way of looking at it: Martina 32, Steffi 20.

"I have friends (in the locker room)," Graf said. "I search for them in my age group and who I would have a good time talking to."

Graf also insisted that if she didn't enjoy playing tennis she wouldn't do it and if that doesn't show, well, too bad.

And as for not speaking with Navratilova, Graf had a comeback prepared: "She doesn't talk to me, either."

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