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May 8, 2015

Serena Williams


P. KVITOVA/S. Williams
6‑2, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  I'll take the hit for the team.  Leaving the match aside, can I come back to something you said in the last press conference about Petra and your admiration about that bold step to take time out.  What made you admire her for doing it?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Because most people don't do it.  Most people play through it and maybe go down a level or don't play well because they really need to take some time off.
Show they end up losing confidence and not playing as good as they can.  She was wise enough to realize that she needed a break, and she was able to be able do well.

Q.  Which obviously now leads me to the question that everybody wants me to ask, which is could you talk about today and what made the difference in her game?  Why didn't it work for you?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, I think she just played well today.  I mean, she went for broke on every serve, every return.  I hit some second serves, 170, 75, and she just hit them for winners.
I was very slow off the mark.  After my serve I wasn't moving as well as I should have.  You know, I wasn't in it.  I wasn't Serena today.
I think that was the main thing.

Q.  What are the reasons for you feeling like this today?  Fatigue?  Tough match against Azarenka?  Anything going on physically?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I'm just exhausted today.  This has been a rough week for me.  It's all part of the clay though.  It's really good to be really exhausted now going into another tournament, and then getting ready for Roland Garros.
So this is all great preparation that I actually really, really needed, something to really push me on a wall and push me to the limit.  Really I think it's perfect actually.  It's perfect timing.
So hopefully I'll be able to continue from this.

Q.  So you're going to Rome?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, I'm scheduled next to go to Rome.

Q.  How would you assess your tournament on the whole?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I thought I had a really good event.  You know, like I said, I didn't come here expecting to necessarily hold the trophy, and I'm not.
So, you know, I did the best that I could in every match, and that's all I could do.  I did better than I did last year.  Hey, it's a step in the right direction.

Q.  You said you weren't Serena today.  What do you have to do to get back to being Serena?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I just need to just, you know, play a little bit‑‑ play with a little more confidence obviously and just be ready for every point.  Be ready for every point and anyone that I play to come at me like Petra did today.
Normally I'm ready for that.  Today I was too, but my body wasn't.  My mental was, but my body wasn't.

Q.  We've thrown a lot of numbers at you this week.  There has been 19 matches in the winning streak; 50 in Premiers.  If you had to choose one number that was your...

Q.  Just trying to read my shorthand and it's not working.

Q.  There is 27 in total; 19 here I think it was.  But if you had to pick one number that was the ultimate milestone for you, what would it be?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I don't know.

Q.  Would it be the age you were with your first win?  Your first slam?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  114; is that it for No. 1 for me?

Q.  115, isn't it?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Okay, whatever that number is.  Clearly not good at numbers, but I was good in math.

Q.  So the weeks at No. 1 would be your...

Q.  Today it was a pretty lopsided win.  What aspect of her game has changed from the last time you played her?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I think she just played‑‑ I don't know if anything has changed too much.  She's always played really well against me.  We've had some really close, tough, intense matches.
I just think she played consistent more than anything.

Q.  At this point, who would you say are the favorites for the French Open?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I don't know.  Whatever you guys say is okay with me.

Q.  We had different players doing really well over the last two or three weeks, and now with coming Rome.  You don't see anyone in particular or the usual suspects?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  So bet against me then.  (Smiling.)

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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