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The story of Jelena Dokic, in her words

This is a story of Jelena Dokic's survival. How she survived as a refugee, twice. How she survived on the tennis court to become world No. 4. But, most importantly, how she survived her father, Damir Dokic, the tennis dad from hell.

Jelena was a prodigious talent, heralded as Australia's greatest tennis hope since Evonne Goolagong. She had exceptional skills, a steely nerve and an extraordinary ability to fight on the court. Off it she endured huge challenges; being an 'outsider' in her new country, poverty and racism. Still she starred on the tennis court. By 18, she was in the world's top 10. By 19, she was No. 4. The world was charmed by her and her story – a refugee whose family had made Australia home when she was eleven years old.

Jelena has not told a soul her incredible, explosive story in full – until now.

From war-torn Yugoslavia to Sydney to Wimbledon, she narrates her hellish ascent to becoming one of the best tennis players in the women’s game, and her heart-breaking fall from the top. Her gutsy honesty will leave you in awe. Her fight back from darkness will uplift you. Most of all, Jelena's will to survive will inspire you.

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback


    November 13, 2017

    Ebury Australia

    RRP $34.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook


    November 13, 2017

    Random House Australia

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo


Prologue, July 2000

I don’t know where my dad is. I’m standing in the plush Wimbledon players’ lounge waiting, looking around for him: we’re due to go out for a nice dinner with my managers, Ivan and John. I am seventeen years old and I have just played in the semi-finals. Of Wimbledon.

Surely, you’d think, he would be okay that I got this far at the All England Club. You would think. At the end of the match, as I shook Lindsay’s hand, I looked up to the stands and saw my father bolt out of his green seat, nothing but the back of his burly frame rushing from Wimbledon’s Centre Court. Usually after my matches, he stands around somewhere near the players’ lounge and I have to find him. But today there’s neither sight nor sound of him. I called his mobile after I finished my press duties and he didn’t pick up.

This has been my greatest run ever in a grand slam and I want to know what he’ll say, and to organise how we will get to dinner with Ivan and John. So I call him again, and this time, finally, he picks up.

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