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January 27, 2015

Ekaterina Makarova


6-4, 6-0
An interview with:

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How did you feel the match turned in your favor? At the beginning it was close, and at the end you kept winning every game.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, I just tried to stay solid and to play my game. She's a tough opponent, and I lost to her already two years ago. She doesn't miss a lot, so every point we had really tough one and really long one. I tried to be more aggressive more to win this point because she never miss and she never give up. So I tried to stay solid and to keep my game.

Q. Two Grand Slam semifinals in a row now. Do you feel comfortable this deep into a tournament now?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yes, I do. Yeah, I don't know, I'm so comfortable here. It's all atmosphere and all that maybe memories from New York. I bring it here. It's really, like, enjoying really nice time for me.

Q. How much do you think your doubles success at the Grand Slams has helped in the singles now making you feel more comfortable into the semifinals and quarterfinals?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, I don't think that doubles helps me to understand that situation in quarters and in semis. It's a different situation. We have such fun with Elena. She's a great person, and I'm really enjoying to play with her. I've been before so many times in the quarters. I need some time to used to it, to understand that it's a little bit different game starting on that level. So now I'm pretty understanding how it is, and I'm so happy that I came through today.

Q. Does the doubles ever get in the way? You play again this afternoon. I imagine would be easier to recover and relax than play again today.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, I don't know. I want to go and play my doubles. I will practice some shots which I need to practice. It's nice time. I think I will have a rest tomorrow. So that's good schedule for me.

Q. You were saying the other day how you feel shy as a person. Does that affect you on the tennis court? Do you feel nervous out there? It seems like you're playing very confidently.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: No, I'm not shy on the tennis court. It's a big stage. It's different, yeah, maybe situation when I'm sitting here and you are asking me questions. But over there, yeah, I'm showing my best tennis. That's what I'm really love to do and for what I'm living actually. It's really enjoyable time out there.

Q. So this is harder for you to do than go out there and play?

Q. You could play another Russian, Sharapova, in the semifinals. What would that be like for you?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, I never beat her, so it will be tough. Definitely she's a great fighter. Like here on the second round, she almost lost, but she turned around. I'm looking forward. I'm want to enjoy this time and want to rest and we'll see what happen in semis.

Q. There was a time when Russian women's tennis was very much in the limelight with Kuznetsova, Myskina, Kournikova. Can you talk about those times.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: My idol was Anastasia Myskina. I was watching so many matches of her when she won the French Open and when she was playing Olympics. That was a great time, yeah, when Dementieva, Kuznetsova, Safina, they were all -- like we had four girls in the quarterfinal, two of them in the semis. Now it's a little bit less of us. I don't know. I really wanted to be one of them when I was watching them and learning some things from them. I'm so happy that these tournaments I'm quite like they are.

Q. Has Sharapova felt like part of that group? I know she doesn't spend much time in Russia or play Fed Cup very much. Does she feel a little different?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, that's tough question. I just want to leave it.

Q. Out of all of those women you mentioned, why Myskina?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: I don't know. She looked so smart on the court. She doesn't have a lot of power, but she was moving the opponent so much. Like it was so enjoyable to watch her game. When I was going on the Kremlin Cup, when I can see her live, that was amazing. They were playing against Dementieva one year in the final, and it was like crushed stadium in Moscow, so it was great feeling to sit and watch it. Now I have a, like, great feeling when I'm there.

Q. Did you sense maybe it wasn't Simona's best level today in terms of she was making a lot of unforced errors, especially in the second set?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, it's tough question, you know, because I was playing my good tennis, so maybe in the second set she was a little bit upset. She, like, didn't understand what to do. But she's a great player. She had a great season last year. She always like sometimes can turn around the game, doesn't matter what's the score, so I was so concentrate.

Q. If it's Bouchard you play, what would you think of that matchup?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: She's really showing her really good tennis on the Grand Slams. We just played the US Open. It was really tough match, 7-6, 6-4. So they are both quite aggressive players, so I need to stay with my game and we'll see what happen.

Q. This is only your second semifinal. How different is that stage, that pressure to a quarterfinal? What do you think it will take to make your first Grand Slam final possibly?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Well, I need to believe to myself and don't really think that it's semis, that I'm one step from final. So it's just a normal match like always, you know. Just go out there and enjoy my game.

Q. The U.S. players are always being asked about the state of American tennis. Where would you say the state of Russian tennis is right now?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: I think we're still in a great level, yeah. Like Maria, she is showing the best tennis for a long time. Kuznetsova also. We have some really good girls, the juniors, that are coming up, so I think we'll still be here on the top level.

Q. Do you maintain friendships at all with those older Russian girls, Myskina or Safina?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yeah, from Anastasia because she's helping me already for two years, like in our team. I will go with her to Doha/Dubai. Yes, she texted me every day.
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