AI SUGIYAMA defeated TINA PISNIK 7-6 6-0
Q. You must be pleased with that, given the first set. I think you saved two set points, down 2-5 30-40; 3-5, 30-40?
A. Was it? I can't remember. Yeah, I don't know. I was tense at the beginning and, well, my tactics was to hit her forehand more, because her backhand is very good, her slice is very deep, and she can control the ball very well, so I tried to hit her forehand. But I just pushed the ball, then I didn't hit the ball very good. So even if I did right thing the ball didn't quite go into the court. And I think, when I losing 2-5, I said to myself, well, just hit the ball well and see what is happening then. I tried to hit the ball since then, and I think it's a little thing makes it so different, and since 2-5, 3-5, I started to feel the ball better and hit the ball better, so that makes a big difference.
Q. Pam Shriver and Billie Jean King were talking earlier today about the need for women players to spend more time promoting or selling the game of tennis. I'm just interested in your thoughts on that subject. Do they have a point? What do you think of their - - -?
A. Well, I think the women's tennis is now getting better and better, I think, and so many personality and so many characters. I think it's fun to watch the women's tennis. And also, especially in Japan, we have so many good Japanese tennis players, and I think I'm trying to promote the Japanese, about Japanese tennis; but I try to promote the woman's tennis in Japan, and that's a good thing.
Q. Well, I wonder why they would say that, then. The game is so successful right now?
A. Why they are saying this?
Q. Why they would be saying that?
A. Oh, I don't know. I think - well, all I can do is play my best tennis good, perform on the court, makes a big difference, especially for me in Japan. So many Japanese coming here to watch my match also, and to do well here is very good for the Japanese tennis as well. So that's why - that's all I can do right now, so I don't need to say something for promoting tennis. But they are not playing more so they just want to let the people know how women's tennis going so well right now, I think.
Q. Do you follow - are you interested in the men's competition? What do you think about this sudden elimination of the top five players in this tournament?
A. I follow the men's side, of course. I like to see mens tennis was as well. And about the top five seeded player lost in early rounds is, I think, sorry for the tournament. But it means everybody can have an opportunity to do well here and, of course, the match - every match is so tough, you never know who is going to win. So I think tough for the player, but it's fun to watch for the people here, because everybody has chance, so it's a good sign for them to get.
Q. Ai, getting back to your match: you were saying before you were tense at the beginning, and I think you said that about the first round as well?
Q. Do you have a problem getting started?
A. Yeah, I think it's better because I didn't lose the first set, if I was losing a set-point down. But yeah, that's my goal, to get into the match as quick as I can, because it's going to take a time to get into the match, loosen up, relax and then play well. So that's my goal for the, all the rounds. Everybody get tense so that's part of the game, so that's how I have to improve.
Q. Does that happen to you everywhere, or just at the big ones, the four Majors?
A. Let's see. It's easy for me to get tense, but when I feel good mood and pretty good confidence I can get into the match as quick I can, so just work on my game and - well, it's getting better and better each round, so I hope next round I can play good tennis from the beginning.
Q. I haven't looked at the draw. Do you have any idea at this point who you play?
A. Now they are playing. Eva or Husarova, I don't know who is going to win, but I would like to see this match then.
Q. Do you have any preference?
A. No. I played Husarova in Indian Wells last year and I won. But I haven't played Eva for a long time I guess, and either one of them, I just play my tennis then. It's going to be a ground stroke anyway, so it's good for me.
Q. Thank you?
Q. Could you speak a little bit about your opponent. You played her recently in Sydney and you lost. What was different today?
A. Mentally, physically, preparation was very different. And also tactics was different. The main thing is tactics. I think I was playing to her backhand in Sydney, then she control - actually, she control the game almost every point with the slice. She controlled the ball very good, and moved me around the court. So today I decide to hit her more forehand, and tried to, dominate the game, and you know, play aggressive. Mentally, I was very into it. I mean, from the beginning of the first set was tense, but till then I loosen up and I play really good in second set, so it was very different.
Q. I think the crucial point was when you were saving set points in first set, turned the match around for you?
A. Sorry, in the first set - - -
Q. In the first set you were saving I think two set points, do you think that was the turning point of the match? You got confidence from that?
A. No, not really. I didn't really remember she had much set points, and I just tried to play like this motion, that moment, moment, and I was just pushing the ball, then I didn't hit the ball good. So I just change it, then hit the ball and if it's in, good; but if it's out then you have to correct something. But I just start to feel more confidence in my shot at the, when I was losing 3-5, 2-5, 3-5. Then I tried to hit the ball and it went well.