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February 20, 2015

Simona Halep


S. HALEP/C. Wozniacki
2‑6, 6‑1, 6‑1

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  You keep coming back to see us with a smile on your face.
SIMONA HALEP:  Yes, but I'm more tired than yesterday.

Q.  How did you turn that match around after the first set?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, when I started the match I started with a bad tactic.  I just wanted to hit every ball, and I did many mistakes.  I couldn't find the rhythm.
So in the second set I said that I have to change it and just to play with a good length and to open the court more to have ‑‑you know, I didn't want to force too much like in first set.  So that worked very well for me, and I just kept it during the match till the end.

Q.  You said before the tournament that you were a little bit low on confidence.  Is it fair to say that you are feeling more confident now heading into the final?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, I feel more confident now.  At the beginning of the tournament was a little bit tough for me, because I came from Fed Cup, and there I played bad, I can say.  It was a bad week for me.
But coming here I had two, three days relaxing just and hitting the ball very relaxed.  I found my rhythm.  I found my game.  Now I'm really happy that I play again final this year.
So it's a good tournament, big tournament, and I have just to be happy and to take the positive things from this tournament.

Q.  Karolina Pliskova says she remembered you played a very long time ago when you were kids and it went to 14 or it was like an eight‑hour match.
SIMONA HALEP:  Oh, I don't remember, no.  I didn't know that I played against her.  I thought it would be first time tomorrow.  But, you know, doesn't matter at all when we played when we were young.  Now it's another day, another level, another tennis.
So both of us have, you know, the chance to win the title, so I'm trying just to win tomorrow.  I'm trying to fight every point.

Q.  Well, we know she's got a very big serve.  Does that put pressure on you to hold your own serve?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, to be honest, I don't like to play girls who are serving so strong.  But I have a good return, I think.
Tomorrow, you know, it's not just about the serve.  It's all the game.  She's playing very strong.  She hits the ball very strong.  So I have just to be very focused, close to the line, and to play, you know, like smart aggressive, not very aggressive because she's tall and she has many stronger shots than me, so I'm trying just to play my tennis.
You know, if you fight you can win.  So I believe in my chance and I will see tomorrow what is happening.

Q.  How do you find the conditions out there?  I don't think it was quite as windy as it was earlier, was it?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, it was a little bit, if I remember well in third set, I felt that the ball is moving a little bit from the wind, but I couldn't see very good tonight.
But, you know, that's the weather and we have to accept.  I didn't focus on these things.  I just played my ‑‑I just tried to find my rhythm and to play my best tennis.

Q.  You mentioned that she's taller than you.
SIMONA HALEP:  Much taller (smiling).

Q.  Most players are taller than you.  What makes a little girl want to take up tennis when she sees all these big girls playing?  What made you think you can compete with them?
SIMONA HALEP:  You know, when I was young I knew that I would be short girl, not very tall.  My idol was Justine Henin because we have the same height.  So I think we are faster, we are much faster than taller girls.
We can play fast tennis.  We cannot serve like 190 kilometers, so we have just to try to be aggressive, to take the ball very quickly, and to finish the points.
I did these things, and, you know, now I play good level.  I play good tennis.  I'm trying just to not focusing on, you know, on height of the opponent, just to play my tennis and just to open the angles because it's the most important, I think.

Q.  Did you used to focus on the height of your opponents when you were younger?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yes.  Yeah, I did.  And when I played against Sharapova my first time I said that I'm half of her, so it's not easy to play.  But with experience you can go ahead (smiling).

Q.  In the stands there has been a specific woman every day.

Q.  Have you met her?

Q.  Do you know her personally?
SIMONA HALEP:  No.  It's just a fan.  It's just a fan, but she's amazing (smiling).  I saw her during, you know, the screen up there, and all the time she's like happy when I win and very sad when I lose.  She's a good girl, yeah.

Q.  Is she Romanian?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, she's Romanian.

Q.  Did you realize there were so many Romanians over here?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah.  Last year in Doha there were many, many Romanian people, and this year here it's amazing.  I cannot imagine that a lot of people can come to watch me here in Dubai.  Is not that, you know, cheap.  It's expensive.  And they really wanted to come to support me.
I just want to thank them, and I'm waiting for them tomorrow because the crowd is very important when you play.

Q.  Now the weeks in Dubai and Doha will alternate, Premier and Premier 5.  You won in Doha last year.  It was a Premier 5.  Do you think coming here you need to try and make points and not lose points or these kind of things or you don't think about it?
SIMONA HALEP:  No, I didn't think about this.  Like I said, I had a bad week in Fed Cup, in Romania, so I just wanted to relax myself and just trying to find my rhythm and my game.
So I didn't think about points, and I'm not thinking at all because you have pressure when you think.

Q.  Do you ever think about the dollars you're earning?

Q.  About the dollars you're earning.
SIMONA HALEP:  No, no.  I have now enough and I'm happy, so I'm just playing to enjoy tennis.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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