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Team WTAworld, Senior Member
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Discussion Starter #1
Q. Is Serena Williams a more vulnerable player on clay surfaces? Does she seem less smooth on a clay surface than a hard court? If so, in what situations does she seem more vulnerable?
AMELIE MAURESMO: Yeah, maybe it's one of the surface, you know, she doesn't maybe like too much. You know, I just feel maybe she has a bit more trouble moving. You know, I thought she's still moving well on those tough balls, to get there and hit them back in the court.
But, yeah, probably one of the surface you can maybe try to disturb her.
MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. Was it an easy ride or slightly more complex than you expected? Are you relieved that you passed this first round?
AMELIE MAURESMO: I was not expecting anything easy. I know that Virginie hits her shots very well. She can be difficult to play. I had to be extremely careful. I wanted to really get into the match, as I did. I intended to impose my game onto her.
It worked fine in the first set, then I was slightly less focused at the beginning of the second set. She was very aggressive at that stage. She took her chances. She was very bold in her game, moving forward quite a lot. After a while, it was a bit more tight. I had to be extremely careful and play very concentrated, very focused.
But I'm happy because I managed to really get into the match straightaway. The first round is always very difficult. I'm happy I'm through with the first round. Then we will see.

Q. You had problems serving. Were you under pressure at that point? It was at the very beginning. Was that the reason?
AMELIE MAURESMO: I felt very tense before the match, which I think is quite normal. Then when I started, I felt good. I was not worried because I broke back just after that. No, it didn't worry me so I didn't feel any special tension after that. If I did, I managed to control it.

Q. Why did you feel like hitting that ball anyway? Do you always do it?
AMELIE MAURESMO: I do it occasionally, yes. I did not do it lately because I was playing lots of matches. But I wanted to be aggressive, to move forward. This is probably what I did not do well at the beginning of the second set. But it's very often the case that I have a lull at one point.

Q. Did you feel some danger?
AMELIE MAURESMO: 4-2, 30-Love, yes, she's winning. I'm three meters behind the baseline. At that point I'm trying to get back into the match. I'm telling myself that I can be rushed into a third set very rapidly.
But I managed to stay calm and collected. I didn't get carried away or nervous. It worked fine after that.

Q. Comparing that with your previous experience here in the French Open, how do you see this first round?
AMELIE MAURESMO: The ranking of emotions. Well, I'm not classifying my emotions during first rounds here. What I will say is that I managed to control everything. I managed to play my tennis since the very beginning, since the very first shots.
It was not a perfect match. The first round is never ideal. I will have to adjust my game quite a lot. I will have to improve on a number of things, and I'm aware of that. I hope I will manage, as I always do in matches like that, in tournaments like that, to improve my game, round after round.

Q. You felt the fact that the crowd was very much behind you?
AMELIE MAURESMO: Yes, it could be felt. I didn't notice it too much when I was playing. But it's true that you mention that people were not overenthusiastic. This is true.

Q. You've gotten through the first round. Your results before the French Open have been very good. We've seen you a lot in the press. Is everything connected with the fact that you're feeling well?
AMELIE MAURESMO: Yes. I'm getting more mature. I've learned my lessons from previous experiences - here and elsewhere. There's a certain serenity, a certain calm. Thanks to this, I managed to control my tension as well as I could.
On top of this, I have improved. I've improved my technique, I've improved my shots from the baseline, I've improved my physical condition. I can really use these trump cards in my game. This gives me a very solid basis.

Q. If you compare that with your match two years ago, is it the way you approach the tournament or is it your game that has changed?
AMELIE MAURESMO: I have the same approach to the tournament, but I might be playing differently now than I did two years ago. The tension is always here. It's a fact of life. It will always remain like that. Tension is with me. But it depends how you control it. I think it's up to me to control it better. You have to learn to do that. I'm trying to learn that. I'm trying to draw lessons from what happened two years ago. From there, I'm trying to improve my game, as well. I think that my game is stronger now than it was two years ago.

Q. So when you got on the court, did you think about this match against Kandarr or did you manage to put it aside?
AMELIE MAURESMO: No. I thought about it before, not when I got to the court. It's within with me; I can't forget it. But not when I was playing.

Q. And then?
AMELIE MAURESMO: Well, you have to accept it. It's a fact. If I'm able to manage this fact and live with it, it's fine. I don't know how to answer.

Q. You are in exactly the same situation. You have incredible coverage in the press, media. Everybody talks about you, nobody but you. It's a lot of pressure. A bit less last year.
AMELIE MAURESMO: Yes, I know things have changed in my game, maybe in my mental attitude. Maybe I'm facing things very differently - or at least I manage to control them much better.

Q. Did the men tell you you were happy that you get all the press coverage and they can be quiet on the side?
AMELIE MAURESMO: No, they didn't say anything.

Q. Are you looking further in the draw? Nobody has told you yet?
AMELIE MAURESMO: If nobody tells me, if you don't tell me, it's fine.

Q. You still don't know?
AMELIE MAURESMO: I know who is playing, but I don't know who is winning. I don't know anything else.

Q. You said you have no special tension, and you're controlling it.
AMELIE MAURESMO: No, no, no, I'm not saying that. I'm just controlling it better.

Q. Do you think you can enjoy and only have pleasure during a first round, and not just control your tension?
AMELIE MAURESMO: No. I'm enjoying the tennis I'm playing. But the day I will play here in Roland Garros and really do not give a hoot about it, maybe I can ask for a wildcard when I'm 35 or for my jubilee, something like that.

Q. You can play doubles with Arnaud Clement, something like that.
AMELIE MAURESMO: Something like that (smiling).

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Thanks for posting this Steven! :D

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