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May 22, 2015

Simona Halep


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How did it feel when you stepped back here, knowing you were a finalist last year here?
SIMONA HALEP: Yeah, it's nice to be back in the French Open. You know, it's my favorite tournament, so I feel great. I feel that I'm ready to start the tournament and that, you know, I have good memories from last year. I played good tennis, and now I hope to repeat that or to be better.

Q. Can you talk about the leadup tournaments and your results there? You played a few very tight three-setters that could have gone your way. What was the difference in those? Talk about your confidence as you come in here this year.
SIMONA HALEP: You know, every match was really important for me, and I played many good matches this year. I won few of them, like final in Indian Wells. So it was very difficult, that match against Jelena. And, yeah, I had many matches in three sets in last few weeks. I lost three of them very tough. And, you know, first moment when I left the court I said that I'm disappointed that I lost them, but now I'm thinking better and I feel that I was very close and that was important. I have learned many, many things from those matches. Now I just feel that I can play three hours or more than three hours. It's important that in some moments of the match you have just to risk a little bit, to play like you have nothing to lose, and just trying there to stay very focused till the last point. So now I know how to do, and, you know, with experience I can be better in the next matches.

Q. Coming back here this year, how much are you a person that really takes time to reflect on what happened in a place in the past? Have you sort of taken a moment to walk out on Chatrier and really think about last year, or this year is new and different?
SIMONA HALEP: I don't think about last year. Last year is last year. Now it's a new tournament, a new, you know, a new goal, a new matches. So I have just to be focused for what I have to do this year. Of course what I did last year gives me confidence that I can play good tennis again here, but doesn't mean anything in these moments. So I have just to try to be healthy, to try to be like 100% ready to start the tournament. Every match is difficult, and I have just to take day by day.

Q. You said that you needed to play like you had nothing to lose, to take a little bit more risk. Do you feel that's more difficult of a mentality for you this year because, you know, No. 2, No. 3, you come back here, made the finals last year. The expectation makes it difficult?
SIMONA HALEP: It's not easy, but is not very difficult, because every day, every tournament is different. So I have just to take my chances at every tournament and just practicing hard for what I have to improve. Because I have many things to improve. You know, my expectation for this tournament is just to try to play at my highest level, and, you know, to win matches. But I'm sure that it will be very tough. Everyone is playing good, so everyone wants to play good at Grand Slam. We have only four per year. So I feel ready. I feel confident. You know, I feel that I can take my chances here, but we will see.

Q. Then also you have been working seems like a little bit more with Darren lately. What does he bring to your game? What's he been working on with you?
SIMONA HALEP: First, he's a kind person and he's very positive. I like this. He's a good coach, one of the best. He has experiences, and, you know, he's telling me what I have to play like tactic and also technique sometimes. I have a good team, and I'm really happy that I have him close to my team and close to me. He give me confidence and give me more positive things, because I need when I play to think positive. I think this is my key during the matches.

Q. Speaking about confidence, saw a little bit of nerves last week in Rome when those matches did get tight. How are you working on that kind of stuff? Is that something that you're working perhaps off court with, you know, a psychologist?
SIMONA HALEP: No. I'm not working with anyone. I'm working only with my team. I have a good person close to me, my family, so I feel great, I feel happy. You know, sometimes you cannot play like every day your best tennis. You have to accept this and just to go ahead. I played many good tournaments this year, so I had good results. It's impossible to play to win everything. I know this. And I just want to take the positive thing that I feel the game, I play good, and the confidence will come.

Q. Besides this tournament, Roland Garros, what do you like about Paris?
SIMONA HALEP: Everything. (Smiling.) Yeah, it's a good question, because I like everything here and I feel good. I like the restaurants; I like to go walking on the streets. It's nice, because, you know, I have good memories from the past also in juniors. I like the city. It's just -- I love it.

Q. Food? How about food?
SIMONA HALEP: Good food. Also Chinese. I was to the Chinese restaurant. Everything is good. (Smiling.)
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
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