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WIMBLEDON


July 3, 2015


Serena Williams

LONDON, ENGLAND


S. WILLIAMS/H. Watson
6‑2, 4‑6, 7‑5


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How would you describe how you were able to pull through this match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, I don't know. I honestly didn't think I, one, was going to win. How I pulled through, I really don't know. I just was like, listen, if I'm going to go lose, I'm going to lose trying to do the right things.

Q. When you're down Love‑3, are you thinking about losing this match or are you thinking about losing the whole Grand Slam, the Serena Slam?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I'm not answering any more questions about the Grand Slam or the alleged Serena Slam.
No, I don't think that. I'm actually more negative than one would think. I'm like, Well, I guess I'm going to do this tomorrow. I'm not really thinking about the match. Next thing know, I'm playing a point. Maybe it takes my mind off of things.

Q. What are you going to do tomorrow?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I was thinking, Well, going to find a dance class, hang around to watch Venus play. That was kind of going through my mind.

Q. That indicates you were playing psychologically with yourself, but you thought you were going to lose at that point?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's not that I thought I was going to lose. I just felt like she was playing really well. She just did everything so well. I wasn't able to keep up. You know, sometimes you just don't have your day. I thought maybe today just wasn't my day.
Obviously I keep fighting and I keep thinking, Well, just let me keep trying to do the best that I can.

Q. How would you rate Heather's performance today in terms of a first‑week opponent at a Grand Slam?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I think she played unbelievable. She really went out there with a mindset of winning this match. That was how she went out there.
She did her best today. I thought she played unbelievable. I thought she served well. I think she did everything great. She kept her unforced errors really, really low.
Yeah, it was pretty impressive.

Q. 0‑3 to 3‑3, you were showing emotion. Then it seemed you became quieter toward the end. Any mindset change?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I was trying to get myself pumped up. I felt like I was a little flat when I got down Love‑3. Once I evened out, it was like, Okay, let me try to stay more calm. Then I got down again, so...

Q. That was the first time you played a British player in this country on Centre Court in any capacity. What was it like for you playing, in a way, against the crowd? Did that fuel you at all?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it was really intense today. I don't think I've ever played with a crowd here like that. They were really vocal, in between points, during points, so...
But, you know, at the end of the day they were rooting for their champion to do well. You know, you can't blame them 'cause, like I said, if I were here, I would probably be rooting for Heather, too. Being a local, you want to see your girl do really, really well.
That's kind of how you have to look at it.

Q. You played in France once, people being a little too much versus you. Did you have the same feeling today in a way? Normally British are quieter. I've been in Wimbledon 42 years in a row and I never saw a crowd like today. I want to know if you expected it or you're a little bit surprised?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I agree, I never saw a crowd like this either. I think they were really into it. They really, I guess, wanted Heather. Heather has a tremendous fan base here apparently.
Yeah, I've never seen them so vocal. I've never heard boos here, so that was new for me.
Hey, I've been through it all.

Q. Althea Gibson won here twice in the '50s. Do you see yourself as her successor and could you reflect on her achievement?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think Althea Gibson had a wonderful career, being the first African American, period, to win a Grand Slam.
I don't see myself as her successor because she went through so much. I read a lot about her, how she had to sleep in cars because she wasn't allowed to stay in hotels. I've never had to go through those trials or tribulations.
I think, if anything, she was able to pave the way for me to have an opportunity to play and do the best that I can.

Q. It's never fun having to play Venus in a Grand Slam. What is your ritual? Do you separate? Do you talk? When you have to play each other, what is the ritual going to be for the next couple of days?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, you know, it's unfortunate that it's so soon. But we're going to do the best that we can. I mean, she's my sister today. She's my sister next week. She's my sister next year. I think that's a little more important than a match.
We'll leave everything out on the court. When it's done, you know, we'll go back to regular life.

Q. The competitors at this level are all great. Again today, it was another crisis match following the tough matches you had at Roland Garros. Can you talk about these many matches recently where you had to dig down deep, why you think you got behind?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think this is a match I would have lost last year or the year before. Sometimes you play tough matches. Sometimes you play a lot of tough matches. Sometimes you don't.
I probably should have won the second set, and I didn't. I kind of let that one get away from me. I mean, she just started playing really well. I can't take anything away from her. She just started playing unbelievably.
But I was just really happy to get through that and pull through it.

Q. It's a strong statement to say you would have lost it last year. How are you better now?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, yeah, no, I just feel like mentally, if it's possible, so much stronger. That's always my strength, is my mental.
The older I get, I think the tougher I get upstairs. Yeah, I think every year, maybe this time next year I'll be probably even stronger.

Q. You said after your match you thought Venus was in better form than you here. You lost last time you played. What do you think of Wimbledon having relegated her to the outer courts for her first three rounds, despite her being a five‑time champion here?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I think it will be a really good match. Yeah, I don't know. She's playing so well. I'm practicing next to her every day and I'm in awe of how she's doing. It's a little frustrating because I know I have to play her. I just don't know how I'm going to do, to be honest.
Worst‑case scenario, I don't do well. I'll just try to keep moving ahead. Did better than last year. So I guess it's a step in the right discussion.
I don't really have a comment on the other part.

Q. You spoke about how mental toughness is so important to your success. What is the difference in the emotional challenge when you play against Venus?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Nothing. I mean, in the beginning it was hard because I was younger. Playing Venus Williams was very difficult.
But now it's absolutely nothing. Only thing for me is I'm playing the toughest player I've played in women's tennis. That's never fun.

Q. How did that change for you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I just focus on, you know, winning. I don't focus on anything else. So, yeah.

Q. You've had such great success with Patrick coaching you. What was the key things that he said to you today after the match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I tend to get down on myself when I don't win easy. So he's like, You know, you should be happy. You got through that. I don't know how you got through that.
Yeah, he was really positive about that part. Pretty much everyone in my camp was, so...

Q. It's been 17 years since you first played Venus at a slam. That's a longer distance than Navratilova and Evert. You have the longest rivalry now. Do you ever think how crazy your journey has been?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, I never really think about it, to be perfectly honest with you. But that's pretty crazy. It's ridiculous.

Q. I guess one day four, five years from now, do you think you will reflect on it and appreciate how amazing your rivalry will be?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Absolutely. I'll reflect on a lot of things in four or five years (smiling).

Q. What do you think Venus' most important legacy is in the sport?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, my gosh, where do I begin? She is a pioneer for not only tennis, but for women's rights, as well. Not only the Grand Slam titles she has, but she's done so much for this sport. It's just been amazing for me to follow in her footsteps in terms of getting equal prize money here, just stepping up to the plate and being that person. It's good for everyone's morale.

Q. What's the toughest away match to play? A French player in Roland Garros or Australia?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I'm going to have to go with playing Heather Watson in Great Britain, for sure.

Q. Did the boos irritate you? Is that too much?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, I'm here. I work really hard. I come here to compete, like hundreds of other players here. That's all I do. I'm happy to be here. I want to bring my skills to the greatest tournament on the planet. I'm happy to do it.
So I just think people have to realize that that's what it's all about. It's not about jeering. I would never do that.

Q. I guess you're looking forward to a more neutral or maybe 50/50 crowd when you play Venus?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I expect more people to be rooting for Venus.

Q. Really?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I would be rooting for Venus, so...

Q. How come?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, she's been through so much. She's had a wonderful story. She's been so inspiring to me. You know, she's just an incredible individual. She's just so amazing. She's been so inspiring to a lot of people with the same things that she goes through, too.

Q. You and Venus haven't played here or any Grand Slam for six years. How special will it be to even have this chance to walk out on court and play her on Monday?
SERENA WILLIAMS: So that's a question you have to ask me in four or five years, I think (smiling).
Thank you.

http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=110887
 

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WIMBLEDON


July 6, 2015


Serena Williams

LONDON, ENGLAND


S. WILLIAMS/V. Williams
6‑4, 6‑3


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You have your stats there. How do you think you played?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I literally just got them while I was walking in. I haven't had a chance to look at them yet.

Q. How do you think you played today?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think I played solid. I knew that playing someone like Venus, that's beaten me the most, I have to be solid. I had to cut down on my unforced errors. I had to take a lot of chances. So I was able to do that.

Q. Do you enjoy playing Venus?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, you know, I enjoy just playing the game. You know, sometimes you have to play people that you don't want to play. That happens.
But overall I just enjoy it.

Q. What do you hope for the future as far as the possibilities of playing with Venus on such a grand stage?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, what do you mean, what do I hope?

Q. When you were interviewed when you came off the court, you said you didn't know how many more opportunities there will be. What are your thoughts about that and the future for opportunities?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, you never know. It's been six years since we played each other. Like I said, I just really was enjoying the moment out there. It was such a great vibe, such a great situation to be in, when we were both so young and dreaming of coming to Wimbledon.
Not only did we fulfill our dreams, we both won it five times. That's pretty amazing.
I just had an opportunity to reflect on that.

Q. For the future, what do you hope there will be given you're both playing at such a high level right now?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, we're both playing really good. So I think this opportunity could come often again. Hopefully it will come a little later in the tournament, but I definitely think it could present itself again.

Q. Now that it's over, did you dread facing her this early in the tournament, with all the stuff around it, the Grand Slam possibility, and she seemed to be playing pretty well?
SERENA WILLIAMS: She's playing great. Like I said, I no longer answer questions about Grand Slams.
But, yeah, she's been really playing great. I don't enjoy playing her in general so early at any type of tournament. I'm totally okay if it's at a later stage. That's just how it worked out.

Q. Seeing how Venus has come back and what you've seen from her today, what can you expect from her?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, she's playing really well. She probably could have played a lot better, as well. I've been there watching her practice every day and train. And she's practicing well, and she's putting in the time and she's feeling better. So you can start to see that being reflected in her game.
Boy, she has a game to just knock anyone's socks off. So you just have to be ready.

Q. Do you head out there trying to tell yourself that you're not playing Venus, you're just playing another opponent? Has your thinking about that changed over the years from when you first played her?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, in the beginning I had to really kind of focus on that. I had to really think like, No, I'm not playing Venus.
But now, you know, I wasn't thinking like that at all. I'm thinking, I'm playing a tough opponent. She's been playing so well. Oh, my God, how am I going to be able to overcome this?
It wasn't necessarily playing Venus, it was playing my opponent and the ball.

Q. Where do you feel you are emotionally and physically at this point? You had a tough match with Heather, then facing Venus in the fourth round. There's all this pomp and circumstance. Do you feel you'll recover well for tomorrow?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I look forward to tomorrow. I feel like my tournament has finally begun. This is where I feel really comfortable in a Grand Slam.

Q. I remember you saying in Paris at this point in the tournament, you have an idea of what else is going on in the tournament. The top half of this draw has been strong. How does it feel when you're in a tournament that looks lopsided from the outside, more opportunities in some parts than others?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think about it so much. I always seem to be on the side that's more lopsided. I'm on the heavier side it seems. Maybe because I'm one of the heavy hitters and it makes it heavier. But also with Maria, Victoria and Venus, there's a lot of heavy hitters on this side.
It doesn't matter. At the end of the day you need to get through these matches now, sooner or later, you know.

Q. This is the first time in over 10 years we've had three American women in the quarters here, Coco and Madison making it through. Thoughts on getting some support late in the tournament?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's really great, especially from both those ladies. Madison is playing really well. Coco, as well, getting in the quarterfinals. I played with her in Fed Cup. We were able to develop a relationship. It's so good to see all her hard work paying off.
Yeah, it's really exciting to have three Americans in the quarterfinals. Three out of eight is pretty good.

Q. How much of an internal struggle was it for you in that final game to make the challenge? It seemed like both of you throughout the match were reluctant to make the challenge. As I asked Venus, she said she used to beat you quite a lot when you were younger. Did you ever cheat on the line calling to move it your way when you were a kid?
SERENA WILLIAMS: That's the past. I was young.

Q. Is that yes?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yes (smiling).
I was young and I made mistakes. If it was close to the line, I just called it. She always beat me, so...

Q. The serve was well out. You seemed to pause before you challenged.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I didn't. I went like this, and he yells automatically, Challenge.
I said, I didn't even ask yet for challenge.
I thought the ball was really far out. I was whining and complaining. Yeah, so I didn't hesitate.
All the other ones I wanted to challenge on, she kept hitting the lines and the lines. I thought they were going out, then I saw they were on the lines.
I don't challenge out of stress anymore.

Q. How does it make you feel when you hear some of the younger generation, the next generation of American players, talk about the inspiration they've drawn from you and Venus?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's an amazing feeling. Just to be a part of, you know, the last generation that played, still continues to play tennis, it's great. Then to see these young players say they're inspired, it's unbelievable.
It's like when I go out there, you play to do your best, you dream of winning. No kid dreams of inspiring other women and other players. That's just a side of it that you don't realize you are fortunate enough to do.
For me, it's really, really exciting.

Q. Venus said afterwards you looked in pretty good shape to win this tournament. She said it's going to take something pretty special to beat you. What are your thoughts on that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, I don't know. I'm just going out there and doing the best I can. I hope not to have a bad day. I have a couple, three rounds to play. Just going to try to make it through the next one, the next one, then the next one.
At the end of the day, I'll just do the best I can.

Q. It's said of siblings, like Bob and Mike, you and Venus, that they know the next move, the next tendency. Talk about being so close to Venus, sensing what she's going to do off court and on court.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it's interesting because I'm able to get a little head start on some shots because I kind of feel. I watch a lot of her matches. I'm always supporting. I'm her biggest fan. I always feel kind of what's going on.
You got to just play the unexpected, I think.

Q. What shot do you particularly know?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I'm not going to tell you what shot she's going to do and where. C'mon.

Q. Something that's come up in the last couple of days is that fans of Nick Kyrgios have taken to putting chocolate spread on their faces as a method of supporting him. I wonder what you think of the appropriateness of that kind of support?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, gosh, I never‑‑ I don't know. I don't even want to talk about that. I don't care. Really? I didn't know that.
I mean, I think you're better asking the fans that question. Maybe they can give you some insight. And let me know, I'd be interested to know.

Q. What effect do you think growing up with Venus on the court, having the rivalry with her over all these years, how has that made you the player you are, or contributed to it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I always say I wouldn't be the player I am today if it wasn't for Venus. Just having an opportunity to watch her win matches, watch her go to the top, and me wanting to be there because she was there. Her practicing next to me on the court. That inspiration, her inspiring me.
I would never be here today in this chair if it wasn't for her.

Q. Either Victoria Azarenka or Belinda Bencic next. Vika gave you such a tough battle at the French Open. You only played Belinda once. Each of their games, how do you see that matchup?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I've had a couple of tough matches with Victoria. It doesn't matter who I play, I'm going to be ready. I'm going to have to be ready. She's due to win big and to do really well.
Incidentally, so am I.
Belinda had a really big win on grass. I feel like she's a really good grass court player. She's a smart player.
Yeah, we'll see.

Q. Venus told us, talking about her final with Lindsay 10 years ago here, she remembered a piece of advice you gave her, telling her, If you take your opportunities, you're going to get more. Is there any piece of advice that Venus has ever given you that stands out right now?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah. She always gives me such positive, good advice. She always says that, Just no matter what, never stop, you know, just always stick to your guts and follow how you feel, follow your gut.
Taking that on the court has helped me out a lot. Especially in Australia, I was down and out. I just stuck to it, came back.

Q. It was a nice and affectionate moment at the end. Can you perhaps tell us what you said, the words exchanged?
SERENA WILLIAMS: We were just like, Good job, yeah.

Q. Madison, you played her in Australia, her biggest slam match. From that match, did you see in her sort of a readiness to be able to make these deep slam runs?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I mean, she has a great opportunity to be in the final, I guess. I don't know who she plays next.
You know, I think on paper, she's a great player. I think she's a wonderful person. She's just really smart and nice and cool. It's hard to not want to see someone like her do well. You just want her to do well.
So I really hope she can just go really far. She has the opportunity to.

Q. What would you say you've learned from the years of experience in facing your sister, which is a situation that is so unlike everything else that you've encountered in your career?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, I just learned that, you know, life, there's so many things that are more important in life than tournaments and wins. No matter what happens, no matter how tough matches are, how hard we play, still family and spirituality, that should be number one in your life, and it is.

Q. You've said so many incredible things about Venus. Is there any small thing you can say about your sister that on rare occasion sort of gets under your skin or you don't appreciate the most?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Her dog. He is bad. But I love him.

Q. What's wrong with the dog?
SERENA WILLIAMS: He kind of uses me, yeah. Whenever she comes home, he goes back to her. Kind of gets me excited.
Been talking to her about that, though.
Venus does nothing wrong. She's like the perfect sister.

Q. People always say that you're most vulnerable in the opening week. Do you feel like that's the case? When it gets to the second week, something kind of clicks for you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No. I felt like I've had a couple losses in the first week, and now suddenly I'm vulnerable. That's how it is.

http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=110951
 

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WIMBLEDON


July 7, 2015


Serena Williams

LONDON, ENGLAND


S. WILLIAMS/V. Azarenka
3‑6, 6‑2, 6‑3


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You've often said you enjoy playing Maria Sharapova. That will come in the next round. Do you approach playing Victoria Azarenka in the same way?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, yeah, I feel like me and Victoria always have really wonderful matches. She's always able to push it to three sets. We always have some great three‑set matches.
Whenever I see her name I get excited because I feel like there's going to be an opportunity to see how far I am, how well I'm doing. We always play each other pretty much every tournament. I'm usually getting used to that.

Q. What do you feel made the difference today? Obviously a very high‑quality match. Victoria was saying you pretty much won a set just on aces.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, I don't know. I guess, you know, obviously‑‑ I thought she served really well. She served a lot of aces herself for her. And she just kept mixing it up, throwing it off. I wasn't quite sure where she was serving. I thought she did a really good job with mixing it up.
The difference? I don't know. I don't know what the difference was. I would say serves, but we both I think were able to hold our serves.

Q. Was that as well as you feel like you can serve, especially towards the end of the match? Do you feel like you were relying on those big serves to come through for you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I like to believe and hope I can serve better. But, I mean, I always try to serve big on grass. So I don't know. I mean, that's my game on grass, just aces. I think everyone tries to do that.

Q. You put on a very high‑quality match out there, very entertaining. Caroline Wozniacki said she didn't think enough of the women's matches were on the main courts. Do you agree with her with that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Every year there's two men's and one woman's match on the main courts, Court No.1 as well as on Centre Court.
You know, we're still fighting on that. We've made some‑‑ God, I've lost my words‑‑ progress, yeah. But hopefully we'll keep making more progress.

Q. What do you mean you made progress?
SERENA WILLIAMS: We made progress making sure that women have more featured matches. It's just a little bit at a time. Hopefully we'll get to the point where we'll even have more featured matches.

Q. Caroline said a lot of the women feel the same way. Is there an agreement among the women?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think it's limited to Wimbledon. We have this problem at a lot of different tournaments. Pretty much most of the tournaments that are both men and women.
So I think it doesn't start here. It's a huge conversation that we have to have.

Q. As far as the match with Maria goes, it's well‑known you're not the best of friends, as it were. People call it a grudge match. I suppose it actually has to be even sided for it to be a grudge match. You haven't lost to her in 11 years. How are you feeling about it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I love playing Maria. I think she brings out the best in me. I think I bring out the best in her. I thought we had a wonderful final in Australia. It was very entertaining. She played really well.
For me, I don't feel like I have any pressure going into this match. We both actually lost early last year. We both are kind of enjoying this moment and one of us will be in the final.

Q. When you step on Centre Court and are pursuing the championship here, what is the connection that you feel with the game's greats who have preceded you, Althea Gibson, Billie Jean King, Steffi Graf and the others?
SERENA WILLIAMS: When you're out there, to be honest, you pretty much just think about your match and your opponent. I don't necessarily think about the amazing women that led the way for me to have an opportunity to play.
So I just kind of focus on the moment.

Q. When you see your name on the trophy, and it's there a lot, what is the connection you feel with the people who preceded you? What is the feeling in general?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's really an unbelievable feeling to be there etched forever in history, something that you work on as a kid, your whole life. You dream of having that moment. To get that more than once, it's a really special feeling.

Q. You're having all this fantastic success. Do you ever say to yourself, This is kind of fun? Are you enjoying the process?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I've been really enjoying it. I think that's why I've been able to have this opportunity to play well, to do well, because every time I step out on the court, it's been, you know, fun. It's really a fun time for me.

Q. Does that help you to relax on court and know everything is going to be okay no matter what?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah. I have nothing to lose. If I win, it's great. If I lose, you know, I did pretty well, you know.
Yeah, it's just totally different for me. I don't have anything to prove. I won all the Grand Slams, multiple times. Now it's just I'm here just to enjoy it. I think it's actually making me play better, which is crazy.

Q. At different stages in the match, the crowd actually started laughing quite loudly about some of the grunting on the court. Do you find that distracting when you're actually playing?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, a little bit sometimes. It's just 'cause you're not sure. You're trying to listen for the line judge at times. But it's happened a few times. I'm kind of used to it.

Q. Do you feel it's disrespectful?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know if that's the correct word to use. I don't think it's done in a disrespectful way. I just know that, as today, me and Vika, we were just giving our all out there. Literally we gave everything that we had. So, yeah.

Q. Victoria said it seemed a bit unfair because she was training next to Nadal the other day and said he grunts much louder than she does. It seems like it's something that happens when women play rather than the men.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I'm done with controversy. I can't. I'm tired. I have to do ice bath. If you have any other questions, I'm cool, but, you know, I'm done with that.

Q. I hope this isn't controversial. When you get into a third set, do you feel as though you can't lose at this point?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I feel really vulnerable. I feel really vulnerable in a third set, if I'm down a set. I just feel this is another opportunity for me to lose. I have one more set to win or to lose. I just go for it.
At that point I kind of relax and see whatever happens happens.

Q. The match, you didn't really have a chance to have ups and downs in this match because she was very on. How hard was it for you to be focused in every point? You had to dig in deep. I think it's one of the best matches I've seen you play.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, wow, things. I have to go back and look at that. Everyone said I played so well. I was kind of like, Really?

Q. It was consistent with no ups and downs.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I just felt like I was never really up, so I really need to really go back and look at this match because I felt like I was just fighting, fighting, fighting literally to the last point. So, yeah, I'll have to see.

Q. You had a great moment at the net with Victoria. Talk a little bit about how you and Victoria get on off the court, a few words about her and her comeback this year.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I've been really proud of her and her comeback. I told her in Madrid, Man, you've gone through a lot. I really support that. I support you coming back. You have to go for it.
Yeah, we really get along off the court. She's always sweet. We always text each other when we're doing well.
She's a really nice girl. I really admire her because she's so intense on the court, but the second she comes off the court, she's just so different. It's just really interesting to see.
It's super respectful.

Q. Muguruza was not that well‑known when she beat you in Paris. She's in the semifinals here. Did you see anything in her game at that point that made you thing she would be a shortlist great player at that time or did it feel like out of nowhere?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I think since then she's done well. Like she didn't beat me then lose. She went on and had a tough three‑set match against Maria. She got to the quarters again at the French Open. Had a tough match with her in Australia this year. We went three sets.
She's super young. I definitely see her as someone to watch and be careful for because she knows how to play. I think this is probably a good surface for her.

Q. How would you describe the inspiration that you draw from the historic figures in women's tennis, from the people we've discussed before like Billie Jean, Althea Gibson and others?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, right now I can't really draw much inspiration because I'm in the moment. I kind of feel like they have opened so many doors for me and all women in sports in general across the board. It's just, you know, something I have to reflect on later.

Q. You said you're in the moment. During a big tournament like Wimbledon, what are the things you do to stay in the moment?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, usually I am really quiet or I stay in my house or hotel all day. Just watch TV, play with my dogs. Chip is not here, yeah.

http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=110993
 

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WIMBLEDON


July 9, 2015


Serena Williams

LONDON, ENGLAND


S. WILLIAMS/M. Sharapova
6‑2, 6‑4


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How do you beat an elite player like that 17 straight times? How would you describe that? Also being one win away from a very special personal goal as well.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, it's never easy to beat such a great player who's had such a wonderful career. So, you know, I don't know. Whenever you play someone that you know, has beaten you before, you really get really focused, I think. That's what I do.
Whenever I know I have to play Maria, I know I have to be focused because she wasn't the best in the world for no reason.

Q. You now play a player who has never been on this stage before, but who has played well against you. What are your thoughts on the mental side of this matchup on Saturday?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, well, it's definitely not an easy matchup. She actually has a win against me. We had a tough match the last time we played. And she's given me problems in the past.
So this time I have to just, you know, go in it like have fun and do the best that I can, just try to stay positive and stay focused.

Q. What do you remember, though, about when you were first on this stage and what you need to overcome that she might be going through now?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, well, she's been on the stage a little bit. I mean, she's done well at the French Open a few times. She's played really big there.
I don't think she's intimidated at all. She's not that kind of person. So she'll be fine.

Q. When you're kind of starting off like that, you don't have a lot to lose when you're out there. You've been in that position a million times before. Is that almost dangerous when someone can come at you like that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, no. I mean, she has Wimbledon to lose. I think we both have Wimbledon to lose, so I think that's something to lose.
And, yeah, she's beaten me before, so she knows how to win. She knows what to do.
It's a different situation. So I think it puts her in a unique position where she has an opportunity to become Wimbledon champ.

Q. When you were in baseline rallies with Maria, do you feel physically stronger?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, I never thought about it. I don't think about that. I feel good when I'm in a baseline rally, because that's my game. I love rallying, running, hitting, so...
That's kind of like my strength.

Q. When you made the decision early in the tournament not to talk about the Grand Slam, was that a moment of exultation? What did that feel like for you to say, I'm not going to talk about this anymore? Did that feel good?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It felt good. You know, I don't what the pressure of that, and I'm not thinking of that. When you talk about it every time, you can't help but think about it. It's been okay just to free my brain from that.

Q. Is the man sitting behind you a lucky mascot?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's all about luck. You got to keep your luck around.
We've been friends for like so many years, just like family.

Q. It has to be there for fun, I take it now?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, I hope so. Kind of like we're on a streak right now. We got to do this.

Q. You talked about the mental aspect of the opponent tomorrow. After the match today, your coach was saying about tactical difficulties. Mentioned her serve. He said it's going to be a difficult matchup. What has made her game difficult for you in the past?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Difficult for me?

Q. Specifically.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, uhm, well, I mean, it's always not easy to play someone that you have to fight for every point, you know, to the very end. It's always something that's not very comfortable to play, yeah.

Q. You're going for your sixth Wimbledon title. You have this wider objective. You talk about having fun. What constitutes fun for you at this moment? If it were me, I wouldn't be able to have fun.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, you know, I think you would because I've been here. I've been in this stage. I've won so many Grand Slam titles. And, you know, I'm at a position where I don't need to win another Wimbledon. I could lose tomorrow. Sure, I won't be happy. But I don't need another Wimbledon title. I don't need another US Open. I don't need any titles to make it.
Every time I step out on court, the practice court, the match court, I do look at it as a more fun time because it's not as much stressful as it was. Like getting to 18 was super stressful for me. It was fun, but I was so stressed out.
After that, I've just been really enjoying myself.

Q. If I win five Wimbledons, I could smile?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Believe me, if you won five Wimbledons, you would be smiling (smiling).

Q. I think you said earlier to TV that when you lost to Muguruza last time, it was an incentive to improve. Could you talk about that.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I lost to her last year, I believe. It was an eye‑opening loss for me. Some losses you're angry about, and some losses you learn from. That loss I think I learned the most from in a long time.
I got so much better after that loss. I was able to improve a lot. I worked on things.
I didn't see the results straightaway. But months later I started seeing the results more and more. I learned so much from that. You know, sometimes as much as you don't want it or as bad timing as it could be, I don't want to lose to anyone at a Grand Slam. But unfortunately, I did.
But it was really an experience that helped me say, Okay, Serena, you want to be the best, you're going to have to do certain things and you're going to have to improve certain things.

Q. What did you learn from your finals in '04 against Maria here? Similar situation with Muguruza coming up.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I did play Maria once before that final. But I don't think it's the same situation. Garbine has been around a while. She's 20. I think Maria was a teenager.
I think it's comparing apples to oranges.

Q. How would you describe how much more satisfying the last couple of runs are at the French and here? You were sick, then you had a few matches where you had to come from behind in desperation. Is it a little more satisfying the way this run has gone the last month or so?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, I guess. You know, it's made me know that I can come back from pretty much anything. Or at least I know that I can really try and give 100%.
Of course, I would love to win easy matches. Those are always the best wins. They definitely don't shorten your life, you know. But you got to take what you can get.

Q. What are the images and emotions that you experience when you walk out on Centre Court for a championship final here?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's been a minute, so...
But, you know, I'm just going to think, I can't think about images at that point. I just think, This is another match, I want to do well. I want to end up winning this particular match, which just so happens to be the championship match.

Q. Another young American Jordan Spieth is going for a nice record this year. If you could sit down and talk with him, what would you advise him early in his career on how he should approach it? Do you follow golf at all?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I would definitely tell him, maybe he should read this, Definitely in the press conference don't ask no questions about no Grand Slam. That will help him out (laughter).
The British Open is around the corner?

Q. Next week.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, tell him that straightaway and he'll be good.

Q. Was that your idea or someone else's idea, to shut down the questions?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, that was just me. I was just fed up.

Q. Do you get frustrated when baseball broadcasters don't talk about what's happening when a pitcher hasn't given up any hits in the ninth inning?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't watch baseball so you're just speaking Chinese right now.

Q. Patrick said it's all about X's and O's, about focusing on one or two or three things when you step out on court. What will those few things be on Saturday?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, I haven't decided yet. Usually I know the day before. I usually think about, Okay, what do I want to do before this match? What do I want to focus on?
I'll have a think about it and go from there.

Q. You used to bring out that piece of paper. Do you do that even in private?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, I don't do that anymore.

Q. Prior to the tournament you were talking about the last couple years you hadn't played as well as you would have liked here. You're now into the final. Is it anything more than you played better this year? Was there a difference in preparation? The draw hasn't been easy for you and you're peaking at the right moment.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I just think that this year, I don't know, I feel like winning the French Open and winning a lot of tough, close matches has helped me just be able to really focus and buckle down.
Yeah, I'm really all about focusing from the first match to the last match and all the matches in between.

Q. How important were the tough matches against Heather and Victoria in preparing you for today and for the final? Do you need matches like that to bring you to a certain pitch?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think sometimes you definitely need them or you're not feeling your game, or you feel like you're not necessarily playing your best tennis. You need them.
I think sometimes they're important to know that, Okay, I can last two hours, I can last two and a half hours if I need to. Just mentally it's like, Okay, I know I can do that.
Sometimes they're important. I think pretty much everyone, like I always say, would prefer to have an easier match. But, you know, when you have a tough match and you're able to come through, obviously that really helps.

Q. Has there been anything, physically or mentally, that it's come easier as you've gotten older?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, you know what, I don't know. I don't think it's gotten easier. I just think I don't feel as desperate to win. I don't know. It's just different. It's just different.

Q. Do you remember a time in your career where you've had to hit the mute button on a certain topic like you have this one?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, never. That was a first. I like that mute button, though (smiling).

Q. Justine Henin has been doing analytic work. Mauresmo is coaching. A lot of your former rivals are dotted around the tour. What is it like seeing them while you're here still winning? A lot of them can't even compete at this level anymore.
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's strange because a lot of the people I grew up with are now on the legends tour. It's like, Should I play legends as well as the main?
I'm like, yeah, did I play that lady? Yes, I did, so...
So it's actually kind of funny. Me and Venus just laugh. Oh, my gosh, we played her. We kind of make a joke of everything.
We're just enjoying our time. We're so fortunate to still be playing. We feel just really overjoyed really.

Q. I saw you after you won the French Open, you were interviewed by Henin. Was that strange at all?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, because when I won the other time I was interviewed by her.

Q. Do you still get nervous before a final?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I get nervous every time I walk out on the court. I think that is a special feeling. I'll be concerned if I wasn't nervous. I'll be like, Ooh. Maybe it's not the same for me and doesn't mean as much for me. Every single match I have nerves.

Q. What do you attribute the longevity for you in particular?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I keep reinventing myself, always try to improve something or get better. I think technology has really helped not only my career, but there's a lot of players that are playing, like Roger and Venus, there's so many players that are older that are playing really well.
So, uhm, yeah, I just think it's a lot of those factors that really factor in. Players are taking better care of their health. I mean, I remember when I first started out on tour, I didn't do the things then that I do now.
If I'd have kept the other approach, I wouldn't still be here, so...

Q. Is there anything you could point to, dropping the Doritos?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Those Doritos I had last night, so...
Yeah, no, I'm not going to drop those Doritos (smiling).

Q. You mentioned Roger. Anyone in particular you're pulling for on the men's side?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, you know, seeing Roger play so well obviously is great. I love Novak as well. Who else is there? Yeah, Murray and Gasquet.
Yeah, how can you root against Roger? It's impossible. You know, Novak, you always want someone to defend their title. So one of those.

Q. How would you describe what losing means to you now and what winning means to you? The old 'hate to lose' versus 'love to win,' where do those rate for you at this moment?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I don't like losing. I really hate losing. So I'm that kind of person that will work hard, work harder than anybody else to make sure I don't get that. If I do, I learn from it better. That way I don't have to do it in a long time.

Q. The enjoyment of winning?
SERENA WILLIAMS: As long as I don't lose, I'm okay.

Q. In the Wimbledon job interview window, you talked about problem solving being one of your biggest assets. Do you think people don't talk about that aspect of your tennis that much?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Probably, yeah. When I'm down or if I'm losing, I'm like, Okay, why are you losing? What are you not doing? I actually in a way solve the problem, you know, come up with several different solutions to the problem. I act on it.

Q. You've had all these matches in Paris and here now where there have been crises. What was the one or two greatest examples of your problem solving in coming back?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, gosh, I forgot half the matches I played. I live in the present.
I'm thinking about Miss Watson. I had to solve a lot of problems with that internally. She was playing really well. Then I had to solve the crowd.
Who else?

Q. How did you do that internally? How did you deal with the crowd?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, I don't think I was playing bad. I just think she was playing well. The crowd was really for her. I had to just figure out what is it that I could do to get her from just treeing basically and playing amazing. Yeah, I think that was a pretty big moment for me.

Q. You said you don't feel desperate to win anymore. Has that become an asset for you, helps you to be more relaxed when you're playing?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yes, I think so. I think it helps me be relaxed. Like I was so desperate to get to 18, and ever since then, I've been totally relaxed. It's just been going better for me. So I'm not as desperate as before.

Q. What, if anything, stands out in your memory from your match against Cornet here last year? What sort of effect did that setback have on you moving forward?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, you know, not much. I just realized that I just needed to run faster, I guess. I don't want to talk about that.

Q. Are you searching for different forms of motivation or is it the obvious we keep asking about?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, right now, it's definitely the obvious. It was never my goal. But, you know, right now it's kind of cool. So that completely gets me motivated to work harder and to try to reach my goals.

http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=111055
 

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WIMBLEDON


July 11, 2015


Serena Williams

LONDON, ENGLAND


S. WILLIAMS/G. Muguruza
6‑4, 6‑4


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Must be an unbelievable feeling right now. Can you describe the emotions getting to this point from the start of the day? What do you think of the term 'Serena Slam' now?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Man, it is really a great feeling. Just the moment is still setting in a little bit. I'm just really excited about it because I didn't want to talk about the Serena Slam. I honestly wouldn't have thought last year after winning the US Open I would win the Serena Slam at all.
It's super exciting. I just knew I wanted to win Wimbledon this year. Of all the Grand Slams, it was the one I hadn't won in a while. It was like, I really want to win Wimbledon. It happened.
Just amazing. It feels really, really good.

Q. How can you make the mental switch after a tough Roland Garros?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I definitely think the extra week helped. I took a week off after Roland Garros because I wasn't feeling that great. I just kind of trained and practiced and practiced. You know, then the moment happened.
Yeah, I really think that week in between helped me a lot.

Q. You come across to us as kind of ageless.
SERENA WILLIAMS: That's a good thing (smiling).

Q. Do you notice any difference in your body or your ability, work ethic, from years ago?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, I feel almost better now. I mean, I do have some aches and pains. But overall physically I feel like I'm better. I feel like I'm more fit. I feel like I can do more than I did 10, 12, whatever years ago.
Yeah, I just think, you know, like I said, I just keep reinventing myself in terms of working out, in terms of my game. It's been working.

Q. Can you give us a word on Garbine Muguruza and what you see for her future?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, my gosh. I think she's such a great player. Like I said, she's beaten me before. I think she really stepped up to the plate today. She was determined to do well and to win. She came out there to win. She wasn't out there just to play a final. I think that says a lot about her and her future.
She never gave up literally ever.

Q. You've won 88% in the first five rounds, 87% in the last five rounds. You're basically just as good against the best players in semis and finals as earlier. Why do you think that is?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I feel like I'm in the semis, only one more match to go. That's how I think. I may as well give it my all. Obviously, I don't want to lose in the first round or early. I have a lot, but I never really want to. I always try my best.
I don't think there's any reason in particular. I just think it kind of happens. I just try to do the best I can for every single match.

Q. I know you stay in the present or do your best to stay in the present...
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, gosh.

Q. When did you first think of New York or have you not maybe?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, c'mon (smiling).
You know, it took me a little while. I think when I did my interview for BBC after the match, I did the whole presentation, I did the whole walk around the court. I was peaceful, feeling really good. Maybe a little after that I started thinking about New York.

Q. Could you give us a bit of detail? When you said you reinvented your workouts? I've been reinventing mine for a long time.
SERENA WILLIAMS: You got to get on the Serena plan (laughter).
No, because I've never loved working out. When I first started, I would always ride the bike, work on my legs. Then I started doing more running. Then I started doing more sprint work. At one point I was boxing. Every few years I'm always doing something physically‑wise.
I mean, there's so many sports you can do to stay physically fit. Like if I was still running, I think I would just not want to do it anymore. I wouldn't want to stay fit.
There's so many things you can do to stay fit and it works.

Q. What's the latest you've done?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Right now I'm dancing a lot, so...

Q. Any particular style?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Contemporary.

Q. Describe that a bit to me. I don't do that, I'm too old.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, contemporary is like, I don't know how to describe it. It's just lots of movements. It's not like super fast. It's slow, not too slow. Sometimes a lot of floor work, so...
Yeah, I'm serious (smiling).

Q. When you were dancing around Centre Court after you won, you thought of New York, what were you thinking?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, actually I didn't think about it till the interview. Then I just thought, Oh, man, I've won New York three times in a row. I hope this isn't the year that I go down. I want to do well there.
We'll see. I mean, I've won three, so that's not bad.

Q. What's been the key of winning four majors in a row?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I know just last year I was just so down because I lost so early in three of the Grand Slams. By the time New York came around, I was like, I just want to get to the quarterfinal of a Grand Slam. When I won my fourth round match, I was elated. I was like, Yeah, finally.
I've just been super relaxed. I've been taking time every match. I didn't have an easy go this tournament, but I still just take it one match at a time.

Q. What has this process of the Serena Slam, what has it taught you about yourself?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I've learned a lot. That I'm able to do anything. Anyone's able to do anything they really set their mind to.
I also learned it takes teamwork. By the way, it's not me. It's a lot of people behind me, from my coach, who I think does a wonderful job keeping me consistent in not only all the Grand Slams, but all the tournaments in between as well, which I think helps me for the slams. The physical work, the training.
So it's a lot of work. You know, I think nowadays, more than anytime before, it's really a team effort.

Q. After the last point of the match, there was a pause. It seemed like there was a little bit of confusion as to what was happening. What did you think was happening in that moment? What did it feel like?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I wasn't sure, 'cause I won the point, but I was looking at the umpire, I was so focused. She had started playing really well. I wasn't sure if I was going to serve again. I was so focused. I was like, Okay, is that the match? Is that it?
Plus she didn't say, Game, set, match really loud, so I wasn't sure if there was some type of call or something. I didn't hear her at all say, Game, set, match. So I was just really confused.

Q. There's a lot of aspects to this victory, history made. 21, six Wimbledons, Serena Slam. What speaks loudest to you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: For sure the Serena Slam. I mean, I've been trying to win four in a row for 12 years, and it hasn't happened. I've had a couple injuries. You know, it's been an up‑and‑down process.
I honestly can't say that last year or two years ago or even five years ago I would have thought that I would have won four in a row. So just starting this journey, having all four trophies at home, is incredible.
You know, that for me stands out the most.

Q. With all that you've achieved, with what you might achieve in the future, what do you consider the toughest thing to accomplish?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Uhm, the toughest thing to accomplish is just to stay in the moment. It's easy to go out there and say, I want to win, then try to win. But you have to win seven matches. You have to win each match, you have to win each set, you have to win each point.
It's not anything that's super easy, but, you know, you just have to stay in the moment and do your best.

Q. How do you do it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Just do it (laughter).

Q. Throughout the match today, at any stage did you feel or think, I'm going to lose this?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, she started out playing really well. But then I knew, okay, I started to understand what she was doing better. I thought, I need to do this. I had to problem solve.
My thing was just get up two breaks, just do the best you can. That's all.

Q. Which one was the toughest, this one or Watson?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think you can compare 'em. You know, I think both matches were definitely very interesting. I think one was a third round and one is a final. You really can't compare a final to a third‑round match.

Q. It's been a long time in tennis, 27 years, since we've had someone going to New York with a chance to win the Grand Slam. A lot of attention and hype. What are you expecting from that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know what, I feel like I'll be okay. I feel like if I can do the Serena Slam, I will be okay heading into the Grand Slam. Like I always say, there's 127 other people that don't want to see me win. Nothing personal, they just want to win.
So it's just, you know, going to go in there. I had a really tough draw. This gives me confidence that if I had this draw, I can do it again. I'll just do the best I can.
You know, I really don't feel like I have anything to lose. I've kind of solidified my place at No.1. My goal is always to end the year at No.1. I just want to make sure when I play Australia, I don't have pressure going into that.
Yeah, I feel like I've kind of knocked all that out and we'll just go from there.

Q. In terms of all‑time great sporting accomplishments, how much are you able to put into perspective what you're in the midst of?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it's huge. It's really, really huge. But I haven't done it. I have the Serena Slam now, which is amazing. But, you know, it's different to actually have something and then try to accomplish it.
Of course I'm going to try to do the best I can, but I don't have the Grand Slam in my hands. I can't really feel that if it's not there.
You know, hopefully I'll do well at the Open and then I can answer that question.

Q. You mentioned your coach. What has he brought to everything that you do that you didn't have before?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, obviously something's working. You can't argue with results. I think he does a really great job with keeping me focused. I have really great strategies when I go out there on the court. I kind of know what to expect, I know what to do. You know, for every match, I'm in it. I'm not halfway there or halfway not there.
So I think it's just been consistency and just keeping that for every single match.

Q. Is it difficult to get to that position? Easy to say. How difficult is it to keep that focus all year round?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it's actually easier than one would think. Well, it's easier for me because it doesn't matter where I go, I don't necessarily like the loss. But sometimes losses do help me.
But, yeah, so it definitely keeps me motivated. But I've always been like that my whole career. I just feel like I have a little more bigger game plan going out there. You know, yeah.

Q. It took you some time before you were finally able to win one more Wimbledon than Venus. I'd like to know to remind you with your age, there will be somebody that tomorrow could be 33 years old and win Wimbledon. Do you think that is probable or difficult?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't understand. You think tomorrow there's going to be...

Q. Roger. Another guy who is same age as you. He may win Wimbledon, too. Is it probable?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Absolutely. If I can do it, God knows he can do it. I saw his semifinal match. He was playing unbelievable. I was totally inspired by that.

Q. Favorite or not?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, he's playing Novak. He's strong No.1. He's defending champ. You know, it's tough to say.
But I think it's going to be an unbelievable match. I really look forward to watching it. I'm glad I'm not playing either one of them.

Q. You wear very pretty outfits the days after and the parties. When you're choosing the outfit, did you have doubts, if I don't win, I'll wear that outfit someplace else?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I always bring a dress just in case, always. I found out the better dresses I bring, I usually win. If I bring a not‑so‑nice one, I don't win. I brought a really nice one this time.
I'm not sure. Try to think positive, you know. Try to think positive.

Q. 5‑1 in the second set, a game away, you wound up serving twice, getting broken. Came to 5‑4. What was that like for you? Was it sort of nerves at being that close? What happened there from 5‑1 in the second set?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, I think she returned really well today. How many double‑faults did I hit? I had a lot of double‑faults. Eight. Oh, my gosh. I hit a lot of double‑faults, so that doesn't really help you.
In warmup today my serve was off. I probably served more than usual because I didn't get it right and I kept going, kept going. I just didn't feel my serve today.
I think if I had felt it better during the match, maybe I would have been able to close it out.
She also returned really well, so I think that helped her out and helped her get back in it. She also never gave up. She never gave up hope of raising the trophy.

Q. A pretty remarkable week for American sportswomen, you and the soccer team, as well. What is your take on what it all mean in terms of being a female playing sports in America?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Olympics, baby. USA at the Olympics.
I was so happy for the USA women to win the soccer. I was cheering them on. It was great. They always do really well. A little nervous sometimes.
It was so wonderful to see the ladies win the soccer. I'm just riding their wave, you know.

Q. Sorry to be blunt. Does being the oldest Grand Slam winner fill you with pride or does it frighten you a little bit?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I'm officially the eldest?

Q. Yes.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Cool. I mean, no, I feel great. I definitely don't feel old. I think in life I'm still pretty young. You know, I think, like I always say, with new technology, new workouts, all this other stuff, I think the life of an athlete is changing and the longevity is becoming longer.

Q. How many more Wimbledons do you have left in you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, gosh. I'm just living for the moment. Obviously I'll be here next year, God willing, to try to defend my title. But we'll see.

Q. Can the elder you look back and find deep inside that little girl that had these dreams? Do you think, Wow, look what I've done here?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Not yet. One day, if I ever retire, I'll definitely look back. I'll be like, Oh, I did a good job.
Right now I'm really into just continuing to be the greatest champion that I can be and the best player and the best role model that I can be. I just really try to stay focused on that.

Q. Do you not enjoy the ride as much now, at the end you'll enjoy it later?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I definitely enjoy the ride, but I'm also not looking back. You know, I'll be like, Wow, I did so good.
If you look back, it's so easy to become satisfied and complacent. That's one thing I don't want to have.

Q. Throughout the match you always were focused. You said you tried to kind of stay in the moment. What is your inner voice saying while you're trying to be focused?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. Usually I'm singing a song in my head. Then if I stop singing it, I usually start losing, then I go back to singing. It's crazy up there. You don't want to be up there (smiling).

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August 11, 2015


Serena Williams

TORONTO, ONTARIO


S. WILLIAMS/F. Pennetta
2‑6, 6‑3, 6‑0


THE MODERATOR: First question, pleas.

Q. Serena, was that first match of the tournament a little bit more tense than what you would have liked or is it nice to have a good battle to get things running here on the hard courts?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's definitely a little more tense, but not that I would have liked. It was a good opportunity for me because I haven't played a match on hard courts since April‑ish, early, early April, after Miami. So it was a long time ago. So I think it was really good for me to have that match play.

Q. What do you attribute the first set and then being down a break in the second set? Was it conditions, time off?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Unforced errors, you know, pretty much. Yeah. I had a lot of unforced errors.

Q. What was it that suddenly switched, then, for you to get back in the match and close it out so easily seemingly?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I just told myself to drop it, like drop the racquet low and just get ready to do everything I could to like get into the game and try to do different things, and that's what I started doing.
And I was‑‑ I really didn't‑‑ I was thinking‑‑ last time I was here I won. I should at least try to get through this, you know, and give 200 percent, and you know, I started playing better, but I was still making errors, and then I just started playing a lot better and making less errors.

Q. What was the wind like out there and how is the elbow after this match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: The wind was‑‑ it was windy for sure. Very windy.
Good preparation for the Open, because the Open is much windier than this.
Elbow was okay, definitely not perfect, but, you know, I'll see how it recovers tomorrow.

Q. How did you find your adjustment back to hard courts early on in that match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I just found it‑‑ I found it okay. I just found like it was, just getting used to shots and balls were coming a lot faster.
She played really well. She was hitting the balls deep, and she was doing a lot of things well.

Q. If you best describe the feeling that comes over you when you're down a set, in this case a break in the second? Is it more frustration? Is it anger? What is it that propels you forward and allows you to dig out of so many holes?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think it's a little bit of both. I was really frustrated with how I was playing. I was making so many errors. And then I got really angry. And then‑‑ and that frustration just kind of was like, okay, just try something different, just keep going. And I was just, you know, and then I felt like I was actually a little too frustrated and I was a little too down on myself, so I said, Serena, you're going to have to be positive and be good to yourself out here. And then once I started being more positive, I started actually playing better, too.

Q. That's 12 straight match wins for you now in Toronto. What is it about this city, this tournament, this environment that seems to see you play so well?
SERENA WILLIAMS: We are 12. Okay. I don't know. I love the city, and I've said this a million times. I really love playing here. I love the vibe. I love the city.

Q. Does it surprise you that if you go back to 2001, the first year you were champion here, there's nobody left from that year's tournament still playing here except for you? How does that make you feel?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Like a nice vintage wine. (Laughs). A good vintage red wine, I'd say, getting better with age, I hope.

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Q. Does it surprise you that if you go back to 2001, the first year you were champion here, there's nobody left from that year's tournament still playing here except for you? How does that make you feel?

SERENA WILLIAMS: Like a nice vintage wine. (Laughs). A good vintage red wine, I'd say, getting better with age, I hope.
:haha:

Oh, man, that is so strange.
 

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August 13, 2015


Serena Williams

TORONTO, ONTARIO


S. WILLIAMS/A. Petkovic

6‑3, 6‑2


Q. Much more straightforward win for you tonight than the first match on Tuesday. Can you talk about the progression and improvements that you made between those two matches?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think I served better. It was a big difference. I still think I have a tremendous amount of improvement to do off the ground and every where else.

Q. Did you feel much more confident in tonight's match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Not really, no.

Q. In what ways?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I just felt off, you know. Just gotta be more positive out there again. I just felt a little negative. So you know, I'm just working to get back in that positive attitude and go from there.

Q. And is that something that just comes with more Match Play after having a few weeks off?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I guess so. You know what, I really don't know. Maybe. I don't know. I never really need a tremendous amount of matches to play well, but maybe I'm‑‑ maybe the older you get, the more you need.

Q. Serena, when you take the court in a night match like that, does it take maybe a little bit of time to just kind of snap back into things, you know, just kind of the atmosphere and everything that's out there, getting used to it all?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Not really. I think‑‑ when I step out on the court, I feel great and I feel like I'm living my dream. And I don't think about it every time, but sometimes when I do think about it, it's pretty cool to be doing something that you've always dreamt of doing when you were a kid.

Q. And how have your practices been going? Are they more positive‑‑ are you more positive at practice than you are at the match or vice versa?
SERENA WILLIAMS: They're just as bad‑‑ as negative as my matches. So I'm not surprised.

Q. Can I ask you a question, then, given your answers so far, because when I look at the stats, I see that the entire match took an hour long, actually it's one hour and two minutes long. You didn't have a break point against you. You had three break points to win, and you won 61 percent of all your shots.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Maybe I'm too hard on myself.

Q. You actually had nine aces. My question is, to be as perfect as you are statistically speaking and yet I see yourself sort of addressing to yourself, talking to yourself during the match. I was just curious why you feel that way.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Those are great stats. I usually don't have those stats. You know, I just didn't‑‑ did it look that clean?

Q. Yeah.
SERENA WILLIAMS: It did? Is it just me? Am I just‑‑ it's just me? My coach is right? He said I played good. So maybe it's just me. I just‑‑ I just didn't feel it. Maybe‑‑ maybe I did. Clearly, you know, statistics speak.

Q. Nine aces?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah.

Q. Wow.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Could have had 10. Always try for better.

Q. I noticed you were talking to your racquet a bit. I was just wondering what you were saying to your racquet.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know, but I guess it listened to me, because apparently did really well. No, I just felt like I kept hitting the frames and I wasn't really going for a lot of shots. I didn't really go for winners. I didn't really feel like I played my game. But clearly I'm wrong. So‑‑ I don't know what's wrong with me. I just need to go to bed maybe.

Q. Serena, I'm not sure if you saw last night what went on in Montreal between Kyrgios and Stan, but if you did, is there any reaction what your reaction was to all that stuff?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think a lot of people saw, but as I said at Wimbledon, I'm no longer involved in controversy, so I don't want to be involved in any controversies.

Q. One question, people have been talking about Aga Radwanska's disco dress. Do you have any thoughts on how her dress has stood out and how people have talked about it, and your thoughts about the dress in particular?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, as always, I always love the Nike outfits. Obviously they sponsor me and they do a great job of making fun outfits, but as a fashion designer, I love things that are daring and that are bold and that are different. And I feel that those are all of the above. And it's different. I think in tennis, you need to bring some light to the sport, some fun. And in terms of fashion, I always try to do that. And it's definitely a dress that you can wear in multiple situations.

Q. Can you say a few words about your opponent tonight?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I think she‑‑ I think she plays well. I really like that girl. She's so nice, Andrea is so sweet. She's one of the people when you see them in the locker room you're just happy to see them come in. You just can't help but smile. And you always wish the best for people like her. So I thought she played well. I thought she really pushed me, and she got me a little frustrated, which I think is important. And I thought she did that really well.

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August 14, 2015


Serena Williams

TORONTO, ONTARIO


S. WILLIAMS/R. Vinci
6‑4, 6‑3


Q. Congratulations, Serena. Out of the four matches you've now played against Roberta do you feel this was the best she's brought against you and how her slice and her all‑court form can be kind of awkward to play against?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I've felt that, you know, I don't remember the last times, because we don't play like every single week. But I think it was a couple of years ago, and then before that it was probably months. So it's always a long time in between. But I think this is the best she's been.
Her slice, I think I handled it really well tonight. I think she just‑‑ more than anything her serve was, I think, what really kept her really strong in the match.

Q. And regards to how you felt despite a few strokes going not your way tonight, but how you still persevered, do you feel that you're still getting that form back to where you want to be at in getting to the semifinals here where you feel that you got through this one and this is just another step on the road to where you want to get to?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I definitely feel that's a good way to go, just another step, you know, in the right direction. I don't feel like I'm at my best or anywhere near it. But I feel like I'm going in the right direction and I want to keep that up.

Q. Serena, a couple of weeks ago you said on a conference call how much you liked Toronto, and obviously the fans really love you. You know, you like the city. Just wanted to find how cool is it to have one of the biggest rappers in your corner supporting you as well.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it's cool. We've been friends for so many years. So I don't think about it anymore. He's just like a normal person to me. Yeah, but you know, he's super nice and super sweet, super amazing person.

Q. Seemed tonight like you had to get angry with yourself in order to get the best out of yourself. Why is that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think it's angry. I think it's more getting pumped up, and just wanted to be pumped up with myself.

Q. How did you find the court conditions?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I find them really slow in the beginning, but now I feel like the ladies are hitting the balls right through the court and they're moving pretty fast.

Q. You slipped a few times.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah. It's really slippery. I slipped in my first match, and now I slipped today. Yeah, so hopefully I'll be all right.

Q. Just to go back to the question about Drake a moment ago. I'm just curious have you ever been on the tennis court hitting any balls with him? Does he have any skills on the tennis court?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah. We actually hit several times. He's really a good player. He said he played tennis when he was younger. I thought, really, of all sports. So he's always kind of been into tennis. So we hit a lot. Not a lot. But we used to hit a lot. Yeah, he's really good. He says he can take me lefty, which (rolls eyes) gets me charged up. (Laughs).

Q. So would he make a better tennis player or would you make a better rapper?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, man. I guess that's the start of another question. You know, that's a good question, because tennis takes a lot of years of skill and of, you know, practice. And I'm not saying rap doesn't, but I don't know. Rap, you gotta like think off the spot and do all this other stuff. So I don't know. Let's just say I'm doing the right thing and I think he's doing the right thing.

Q. More serious question, many people obviously consider you one of the greatest, if not the greatest female tennis player of all time. Who do you consider among those who came before you, either that you watched on TV growing up as a kid or you played earlier in your career, as the best female tennis player?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, obviously I feel, you know, for me growing up watching, Steffi Graf and Monica Seles was just a great time. And then watching some of the‑‑ yeah, I think those two are people that really stuck out for me in my generation. So yeah, it was really cool to play them and just be a part of that.

Q. I'm not sure if you heard, but a couple of times this week Ana Ivanovic has sort of said that she would really like to see you win the US Open. I'm just wondering how it feels to know that some of your competitors are actually pulling for you and are really supportive of you and what you've done this year and what you've done throughout your career?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it makes me feel really good. You know, I've gotten a lot of support from the players in the locker rooms, and you know, obviously they want to win, but if they don't, I feel like I'm their second choice. So you know, that feels really good. It goes a long way.
Yeah, Ana and I are really good friends, and she's just so amazing. We'll see what happens. But she's just a really nice, funny, sweet, beautiful girl. So yeah, I think the ladies in the locker room really get along and really just, yeah, for the most part, we all just enjoy each other's company.

Q. And just wondering also, you're well known for the mental strength you have on the court, and I'm just wondering if that's something that you developed over the years, if you kind of remember a time in your career when it sort of started to work out on the court there for you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I think when I first won my Grand Slam back in the 90s, that my first Grand Slam I feel like that's when it started, like mentally in that final I was so mentally focused. I knew what I needed to do when times got tough. And I was shaking because I was so stressed about winning this first Grand Slam. I just locked in mentally and just did what I needed to do.

Q. So can you break down just for your next‑‑ since we don't know who you're playing, Bencic and Ivanovic. Can you just break down those two matchups for you? Are they different? Do you see them as similar, and how do you see that matchup going?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think both of them like to get balls back in play. I think that's one thing that's similar. Ivanovic is super aggressive on her return, and her serve has improved 100 percent over the past couple of years. So her serve has become a strength for her.
Bencic, on the other hand, she gets a lot of balls back in play. She plays to win. She's really strong mentally, and I think she feels like she can‑‑ she is the next generation. She is the next person that's going to be the greatest, and she has an opportunity to prove herself, and that's always interesting to play a player like that.

Q. And now you're in the semifinal rounds. Usually when you get to this stage at any tournament, you're pretty tough to beat; seems like you're locked in. Do you feel that as the week progresses, that especially here, that your game is starting to lock in a little bit more? Do you feel more positive after today's performance, for example, than maybe the last ones?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I definitely feel more positive today. And I feel like each game and each week is getting better slowly and steady. And like I said to Patrick after the match, I don't want to peak too soon, you know. I just want to hopefully keep doing well and keep going.

Q. Serena, you mentioned Belinda being the next generation. I think when you were 18 you went to the finals of this tournament and lost to Martina. For her in her debut, what advice would you give her in this situation?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, she's doing great. I think her father is giving her great advice as it is. Just keep it up. What else can you say. I wouldn't change anything.

Q. What do you think about Halep's comeback and whether or not you see her playing in the final here?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think she's having a comeback. I think she's been playing great pretty much. She's won a lot of tournaments this year. We've had a tough match this year. So I wouldn't label it a comeback. I would label it a great player that's continuing to prove how good she is.

Q. Very early on, top players seem to fall, you know, the first and second day. And it's a lot of No. 1 player. Does that change anything as you kind of approach later on in the week?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You mean in this tournament?

Q. Yes.
SERENA WILLIAMS: No. I just play the best I can and do what I can.

Q. And just wanted to ask how if Drake feels when you say that Green Day is your favorite music artist and if he feels a little jealous about that or any others since green day you have been a big fan?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I said Taylor Swift. I'm a huge Taylor fan. I think as long as I'm‑‑ that's a question you have to ask him.

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August 15, 2015


Serena Williams

TORONTO, ONTARIO


B. BENCIC/S. Williams
3‑6, 7‑5, 6‑4


Q. Serena, did you feel tonight with your ball toss on serve that the most difficulty you had with it the whole entire year and was there anything physical with your ball toss on your serve or was it just the rhythm just wasn't there tonight?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I was just really struggling with my serve today and everything wasn't right with it. My toss was off, and just struggling to try to get that normal lift off, but didn't work out.

Q. And with a match like this tonight showing how tough the depth of the women's game is do you feel like people underestimate the quality of the tour in regards to how strong it is and maybe it's the strongest it's ever been in terms of its depth?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think anyone's underestimating it so much.

Q. Serena, a loss is never fun, obviously, but I guess looking at the bigger picture is it better to lose now rather than somewhere bigger later on?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Absolutely. Every loss for me is a big learning session and a learning experience. So I'm looking forward to learning and getting better from this.

Q. You said that Belinda is like the future of the game. I just wanted to find out what you felt she did well today.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I thought she did really well everything. She really reads the ball well, and she really fought really well, and I knew that about her already, that she never gives up and she fights hard.
Yeah, I thought she‑‑ I thought she played an excellent game. I think she played really well today as opposed to a lot of her other matches.

Q. Serena, it's a very unusual taping on your hand. Is that an injury or what's that for?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I injured it when I was playing Vinci.

Q. Can you just talk a little bit about when it happened and where it was?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I was running for a drop shot, and I slipped and I fell, and I sprained my fingers. So it's just really sore.

Q. How much is it affecting you today?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I can play with swollen fingers, I guess, and my hand. I don't think it should take away from anyone's win in particular. So yeah, it's fine.

Q. You were pretty much in control to start the match. When did you feel things starting to change?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I never felt it really change until I lost the match, so, you know, I always felt that I still had an opportunity to stay in there. And obviously I was down and stuff, but I was just not‑‑ you know what, I haven't playing well today. Today was not my day, and hopefully I can rectify that going into next week and then going into hopefully the Open. Hopefully I can have a few more better days.

Q. After the match you and Belinda seemed to have a little chat afterwards. What did you say to her at the net?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I just told her good job, and she played well and I was proud of her. You know, she did a really good job today. So yeah.

Q. Was this you chalk it up in your mind as a bad day at the office or did you feel like maybe it wasn't there today, like when you stepped on the court that there might be issues?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I think I played really crappy today. I'll try to be politically correct. And I don't think you would disagree. So yeah. You know, I haven't played like this‑‑ I actually played a couple of matches like this this year, but I was able to get through them, but against the better players you have to not play like this. So yeah, it just‑‑ I missed a lot. I hit a lot of doubles faults. Yeah, I just‑‑ honestly, I could have made one or two more shots and the results could have been different, but I just really, really didn't play up to par today, what a professional tennis player should play like. I played like an amateur, to be honest.

Q. How important do you think a night like this is to the rest of the women on tour and their confidence level? Some of them were commenting earlier today that they don't think a lot of the players have a lot of confidence going up against you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think they do have a lot of confidence. Everyone I play, they play with me like if they don't win, they don't get to go home and something happen to them. So I don't know what that's about. But every match I play, I play they're going incredibly hard and they're playing really well. So that's confidence for me.

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She's pissed :hearts:

The US Open is HERS! :dance:
 

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Thanks for the interview.
 

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Serena on coach Mouratoglou

"I feel like he's been a great factor in affecting a big part of my game. He's been really amazing and he's been really positive. What can I say? I think the numbers speak for themselves. Since Patrick and I got together, we've won an incredible amount of Grand Slams and won a lot of tournaments too. We kind of lost count. We've dubbed ourselves the Dynamic Duo. Maybe the Wondertwins."



The Wondertwins :inlove:

Just saying.
Awww. Love them :hearts:
 

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WESTERN & SOUTHERN OPEN


August 19, 2015


Serena Williams

CINCINNATI, OHIO


S. WILLIAMS/T. Pironkova
7‑5, 6‑3


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How is everything feeling physically? Maybe everything wasn't all together in Toronto.
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's okay. I'm feeling better. I feel fit, which is a start. Yeah, that feels good.

Q. The videos you have been doing, you did one in Toronto and then I think you did one earlier for Cincinnati. You're getting ready for some promotional commercial or whatnot?
SERENA WILLIAMS: (Looking confused.) I don't know. Like what do you mean?

Q. Isn't there a promotional commercial that's getting ready to be rolled out?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I did that for Beats, but I don't remember doing anything in Toronto. I don't think so.
But I did ‑‑yeah, that's coming out, I don't know, probably around NewYork. Maybe a little after. I'm not sure.

Q. Is that something that kind of takes away from your time? Because I know you're on court practicing. You have to travel. It's just a lot of demand on you right now.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, it's a ton of demands, and I pretty much say no to everything. Sometimes you can't say no, though. You have to just kind of suck it up and be happy about it, about the opportunity.
So that's how I have to think about it.

Q. Talk about the match today. She held in there with you until late in the first set where you were able to break her at love. Just take us through that game in particular.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, she was playing really well in that game. I was just like, Okay, it's tiebreak time. Returning. Just trying to play better every game.
You know, she's really getting a lot of balls back, so I was just really trying to fight and stay in there.

Q. You used to play New Haven back earlier in your career.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I have never played New Haven. I think Venus has always played it.

Q. But you used to play Sydney before a slam.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yes.

Q. You haven't done that in a long time. When did that become your thinking that that was something you shouldn't be doing? How much does all this sponsor stuff happening before every slam make it tough to be every place besides that place, I guess?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, yeah, I guess I have no option to play New Haven because everyone‑‑ NewYork is such a big opportunity for promotion, I guess.
And then Sydney I just don't play because I usually try to play the week before and get warmed up. There's no really particular other reason.

Q. All the attention is on you having the slam run. I wonder if you would still call Indian Wells and what happened there the most important thing moment of your season?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, I think it all depends on what happens in the next four weeks.
But, yeah, I think Indian Wells as of now was pretty amazing. I think Serena Slam 2.0, winning Wimbledon was pretty awesome, too. So really things you don't expect and doing really well works out.

Q. What do you expect in NewYork? What do you think that will be like?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I don't know yet. I'm just ‑‑I haven't thought too much about it, but we'll see.

Q. First time you have had to play after coming back from a loss. Any different philosophy today?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No. Obviously I'm a perfectionist and I want to do really well and I want to win. I'm always a little more, you know, angry or focused, especially if it's a loss that I could have prevented. It's different if you can't prevent it, but it feels better.

Q. You're no stranger to a little bit drama. What do you make of all the drama on the men's tours last week?
SERENA WILLIAMS: As I said, I am no longer involved in controversy. (Laughter.) Don't put me in that.

Q. So have you talked to Venus today?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I talked to her today and yesterday. Uh‑huh, we talk a lot.

Q. How is she doing?
SERENA WILLIAMS: She's okay. Her spirits are okay.

Q. You said, I think it was yesterday, that you're not approaching this like trying to defend your championship from last year. What did it feel like being out there today? Did it feel familiar for you being out there, the way you played last year?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I just think there is so much going on that I don't even really have to think about this. It's like, you know, a moment where I'm pretty confident where I am, and I want to keep winning, obviously, but I start thinking that I want to play better for not only this tournament but for the rest of the year.
So I don't really feel any pressure, because I really don't feel like I have been playing particularly well this summer. So I don't really feel that amount of pressure to do fabulous. Obviously I want to.

Q. How do you feel about your game, where it's at right now in preparation for the Open?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think it could be a lot better. It's not where I would want it ideally, but, you know, I'm going to have to fix that more mentally than anything.
I think once I lock in there I will be okay.

Q. (Question regarding drama with WTA more than ATP.) I think that's a stereotype. Is that fair? Represent how the tour has been during your career?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Um, you mean there is more drama on the ladies' tour?

Q. Yeah. I think people generally have that perception.
SERENA WILLIAMS: And now they are saying there is more drama on the men's tour?
Listen, you tell me, but like I said, I'm not involved in no drama. My drama days is over.
But if you want to spill the tea, I'm ready to hear. (Laughter.)

Q. You had 11 service games today, and six of those you had two or more aces. Were you going for more aces today?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, actually I wasn't. You know, she stands like in the middle of the court, so it's interesting on how to ace her. Sometimes you go out wide or, you know, she leaves a big hole, but she covers that hole even though she stands in the middle.
Yeah, wasn't really going for it. I was just trying to hit the lines.

Q. Is it more frustration or satisfaction to come through a match like that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: She has this game where she likes to get a lot of balls back and likes to frustrate the opponent sometimes. Because she plays. She just plays a lot.

Q. Frustrating or satisfied that you actually managed to get by that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, you know, nowadays I'm always satisfied to get the win, because, you know, no one is going to really remember the scoreline necessarily in three years. Just who was able to win.

Q. Everyone prepares for a Grand Slam, every player differently, with how to focus or put blinders on or whatever. How would you describe it feels for you heading towards NewYork?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Hmm, I don't know. You know, I'm really trying to stay away from stress and stay away from press.
But, you know, that's very little ‑‑a little difficult. I don't know. I'm going to talk to my agent about it tonight and just really minimize what I do, because I just want to play tennis.
I don't necessarily want to hear about, Oh, this history and that history, because, you know, I just want to be able to do the best that I can.
I want to be able to win and I don't want any distractions. That's how I'm going to handle it.

Q. I have a question about your legacy in women's tennis. There was the cohort of the Original 9, and then cohort of Evert and Navratilova. Are you a throwback to the Evert/Navratilova era or is there a new era sort of emerging of celebrity athletes and activism?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I think that there is a lot of, I guess, quote/unquote celebrity athletes, but I think we live in a different time.
I always am really trying to change the direction and the history and help in being a part of more ‑‑ like the Original 9. Just like opening up other doors for many, many women.
So hopefully that's what I will be able to do more than anything.

Q. Yesterday Roger Federer said that it takes him about 10 minutes for him to get psyched up for a match and be prepared, ready to go. How long would you say it takes for you?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I can say I have never been asked that question. (Laughter.)
To get psyched up for a match? I don't know. Sometimes in the morning I'm like, pumped, you know, like pumped and ready to play.
And then sometimes I can be on the court and I'm, like, Man, am I still here? I'm not really pumped up even though I could be winning.
But I don't know how long it takes. I never ‑‑ you know, I don't know. The second I step out on the court or hit a ball, I just feel like I don't want to lose. Maybe that's being psyched up.

Q. Do you prefer a morning match or an evening match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't like to play in the morning and I don't like to play at night. (Laughter.)

Q.What's your optimal match time, then?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Probably around like 3:00.

Q. Finish up in time for tea.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Exactly. And crumpets.

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Q. Yeah. I think people generally have that perception.
SERENA WILLIAMS: And now they are saying there is more drama on the men's tour?
Listen, you tell me, but like I said, I'm not involved in no drama. My drama days is over.
But if you want to spill the tea, I'm ready to hear. (Laughter.)
...
Q. Do you prefer a morning match or an evening match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't like to play in the morning and I don't like to play at night. (Laughter.)


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Never change Serena :lol:
 

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WESTERN & SOUTHERN OPEN


August 20, 2015


Serena Williams

CINCINNATI, OHIO


S. WILLIAMS/K. Knapp
6‑0, 6‑2


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You really dominated that match. Can you just talk about what was working well for you out there?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I think what worked really well was just composure for me today, getting back in that state of being poised.

Q. Do you enjoy the easier matches or do you want to be tested as you go deeper in the tournament?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think everyone enjoys easier matches. I think testing is also really important, but at the end of the day if you could have only easy matches for the whole tournament, I don't think anyone would object to that.

Q. Rematch next round with Ivanovic. That was last year's final. Your thoughts on that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, she's a fighter. I just saw her match today. It will be a really good match for me and kind of test where I am, you know, just in general. Yeah, so I look forward to that.

Q. Is it safe to say that kind of a step forward in confidence and all that sort of stuff after this match just the way you were able to play and everything like that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yes, in terms of mental confidence, yes. Keeping poise, yes. No matter what happens in my next round, I just want to be able to stay calm and focused.

Q. In the leadup to slams, any slam, is it important to you to face top players, or do you just want match play, wins and don't care who it is across the net? Do you have a kind of a preference?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think it's important to play top players, you know. I think that's pretty important. You don't to go through and not play too many top players. But either way, everyone that plays me place like a top player, so no really big, huge difference.

Q. Bencic is out of the tournament. Were you looking forward to playing her again?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, yeah. I really was looking forward to that, but we will meet very soon. She's playing really well. I'm sure she will get deep in the tournaments.
Yeah, I really look forward to that.

Q. Along those lines, you were really hard on yourself last week saying you played like an amateur. How would you characterize your play this week? I know you're a perfectionist.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I didn't play well last year. I hit more double faults in one match than I have in tournaments.
Grand Slams, even.
Singles and doubles. But no joke. (Laughter.)
No joke. That's not ‑‑usually I play more better. Yeah, I think just this week‑‑ last week I just felt, I don't know, I just put too much pressure on myself.
Then I usually play Stanford. That's my tournament where I'm all stressed out. Then I go to Toronto and I feel better. By the time I get to Cincy I'm cruising. I didn't play Stanford this year, so it was a little different.

Q. Vicky Duval is playing her first Grand Slam after beating lymphoma. What do you remember about her run and her comeback?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, she plays great tennis. I saw her in Miami. Obviously you remember the important things in life when you see someone like Vicky who was just really doing so well and so young, and then to be sick like she was, but then to be able to have the courage to come back.
She still obviously has so much talent. And by the way, she's still super young. She still has her whole future ahead of her, and it really is so inspiring for someone like me to see her do well and have the courage to come back and be the best she can be.

Q. She asked for a main draw wildcard, but US Open only gave her qualifying. Does that surprise you, knowing everything you know about her?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I don't really know. I think that, you know, if she wanted a main draw that ‑‑ if she asked for it, then I would have thought they would have given it to her since she's played wonderful matches there and done so well there.

Q. You talk about some serving difficulties last week. A lot of aces last match; played a clean match today. Is your serve where you want it to be, or do you think it still needs work before NewYork?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, it's not where I want it to be. I don't want it to be there yet. I hope to get it there closer to where I want it to be in NewYork.

Q. Obviously you have a lot of experience and you have been through ups and downs. I was wondering, what advice you would have to a girl like Genie Bouchard who has had a lot of struggles for the last year, and if you think that she could start playing doubles would help her game?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think she's doing better, actually. I think ‑‑I guess she wasn't winning matches, but now the matches are closer and it's just a matter of time. It's gonna come. I really like her so I always root for her.
Yeah, she will be fine. She's super young. She will totally be fine.

Q. And for the doubles?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know.

Q. Has there been any contact between you and Steffi Graf? Has she reached out as you come close to this record that she set so many years ago?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I see her post things about me, and that's pretty awesome. I really am still like a kid when I see her or I see posts. I get super excited. I'm still living the dream.
Yeah, she's been really supportive, which is so great to see, you know, and to feel that support.

Q. If you could ask her one thing heading into the US Open, what might that be?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I would just ask her what does it feel like, just in case it doesn't happen? (Laughter.)
Q.Hair flowed free today. Bun or ponytail decision?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. The wind. It's been really windy. Just, still trying to find a happy medium with this.

Q. You talk about your usual course: Stanford, Canada, here before NewYork. You didn't play Stanford. Did you then feel last week you had to fast forward down a little bit because of lack of play in Stanford?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, because I'm usually starting in Stanford rusty, and I get through a lot of matches, three sets, and finally I usually able to go deep in Stanford.
Then by the time I play the next tournament I'm a little better. As time gets on, I get better and better.
Yeah, I just didn't kick that rust off this year.

Q. Everyone talks about you playing against the past, Evert, Navratilova, Margaret Court, and at some point you will stop and kids now who aren't even born yet will be chasing your records. Looking decades ahead, how will you feel, like being in Steffi's or Martina's shoes? What are your thoughts on that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I think it will be great. I think it's amazing. I think I would be really supportive, like Steffi is of me. It's such a great feeling.
I always want to see people do well and be successful and be the best that they can be. I think it will be really cool.

Q. I know it's been a couple of days, but how is Venus doing?
SERENA WILLIAMS: She's good.

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Q. Has there been any contact between you and Steffi Graf? Has she reached out as you come close to this record that she set so many years ago?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I see her post things about me, and that's pretty awesome. I really am still like a kid when I see her or I see posts. I get super excited. I'm still living the dream.
Yeah, she's been really supportive, which is so great to see, you know, and to feel that support.

Q. If you could ask her one thing heading into the US Open, what might that be?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I would just ask her what does it feel like, just in case it doesn't happen? (Laughter.)
Steffi :hearts: :worship:
 

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WESTERN & SOUTHERN OPEN


August 21, 2015


Serena Williams

CINCINNATI, OHIO


S. WILLIAMS/A. Ivanovic
3‑6, 6‑4, 6‑2


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What does it mean to "pull a Serena"? If you could define that for you us, we'd appreciate it.
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's like when you're down and maybe down a break in a set and a set, and you pull a Serena is when you come back and win.

Q. Reel off 6 straight games?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, just winning. Yeah, just coming back from that is called a Serena.

Q. Sounds like you were pretty happy with that final set that you played, but can you talk about the first two sets and what was maybe not going great for you and how you were able to turn it around?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I think I just was a little lethargic in the first set, but I think Ana played really well. I think she was ‑‑she was hitting winners on pretty much all my second serves. Even if I hit them like 95 or higher, she was still cracking them out.
I just had to get used to that and just be determined to get those back, too.

Q. You talked about a little bit of rust in Canada. All credit to Ana in the first set as you mentioned. If you were playing the full schedule and didn't have that rust, do you think you would have won that first set today?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I don't know. There were some key moments. I mean, I couldn't play for a while. I have that arm injury, so it's just getting over that and then, you know, trying to get better.
I don't know. I think she played well. Whether I would've won or not, I don't know, but just getting the win was helpful.

Q. Was there anything extra in this match just because you played Ana for the championship here last year?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, it just was a little pressure because she plays so well. Just wanted to do really well in this match more than anything.

Q. You said you did a Serena.
SERENA WILLIAMS: You missed it. You're late, Ben.

Q. I know. I'm just wondering, does it surprise you on any level when you do that, when you are yourself, or are you just used to doing it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: When I pull a Serena?

Q. Yeah.
SERENA WILLIAMS: No. I don't think about it, really. I just kind of ‑‑I just go out there and just do the best that I can, and then, you know, I never give up.
So I just keep going and keep trying. I kind of think that should be coined if you guys could write...

Q. It's already in there.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Okay.

Q. What are you feeling when you get on a roll like you did? It's got to feel really good that everything is going well for you and just rolling. How does that feel?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It feels good. It's like I definitely want to be out there to do the best that I can, and it feels like I'm in a zone. I like to be in that zone.

Q. When specifically did you feel it on that roll, in particular?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, when I was down love‑2. Was I down love‑2?

Q. Yeah.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, so I felt like even though I was down I felt like I was playing better and just everything started to connect.

Q. Obviously a tough match. You talked about being poised on the court. How happy were you today with how positive you were able to stay in such a tough match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I think I did really good with that. Better than anything else.
So I think that was pretty good for me.

Q. On ESPN you said that was the best six games you had played this summer. What specifically were you happy with? And do you think that it kind of now you're kind of US Open preparation your US Open preparation clicks in?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I was just happy with my intensity level and more or less my mental just in terms of getting in the frame of mind of little tricks that I always do for each game.
You know, things that I always do. Like believe it or not, even though I have been playing for such a long time, it still takes me a while to get back in that groove. So I felt like my mental aspect was getting back there.

Q. Back there or clicked?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Getting back there.

Q. Are there points in a match when you go into Serena drive? You kind of flip that switch, that you actively say, I'm going to take it to the next level?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, today there was. Usually there isn't a point where I'm like, Oh, I'm going to do this, but today there definitely was.

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