Author; BEN ROTHENBERG
MELBOURNE, Australia — In the soaring but turbulent career of the tennis star Jelena Dokic, any highs quickly fell victim to a deeper low.
“A lot of my good memories — or what should have been good memories,” Dokic said in an interview, “have something dark behind them.”
Dokic, whose Serbian family fled war-ravaged Yugoslavia for Australia, went through many of those extremes at the Australian Open, which began here last Monday. Her last major success came with a quarterfinal run here in 2009, but it was ultimately an isolated triumph in the late stages of a tragic, trying career.
Dokic recounts her journey in exhaustive detail in “Unbreakable,” a book written with Jessica Halloran, an Australian journalist, and set to be released in paperback in the United States on Feb. 1. It’s a chilling account of the relentless physical, verbal and emotional abuse Dokic says she suffered from her father as she ascended the ranks of junior and professional tennis, peaking at No. 4 in the WTA rankings in 2002.
First published by Penguin Random House Australia in November, the book opens with the end of Dokic’s deepest Grand Slam run, to the Wimbledon semifinals in 2000 when she was just 17. She writes that her father, Damir Dokic, banished her from returning to the family’s hotel room after the semifinal loss, calling her pathetic, an embarrassment and a “hopeless cow.” She then hid out on a couch in the Wimbledon players’ lounge until 11 p.m., when a cleaning woman found her.
Subscribe To OurWeekly Update
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.