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September 27, 2015

Victoria Azarenka


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I saw that you tied your leg in the match. How is the injury now?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: It was bothering me during the match. But we'll see. I have to take care of that.

Q. You're the first player I've spoken to that's actually played on the new court. How did you find it generally?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I think the structure is pretty incredible here, you know, what they've done with the facilities. It's really impressive.
The court is a little bit unusual, I think, the balance of it. It's not very normal to see a green court and outside a different color. You usually see the opposite. It's a little bit of an adjustment there.
But I think it's a beautiful stadium. It feels really comfortable. I like it. I mean, it's great that they have invested and came up with such an amazing facility here.

Q. After the US Open, how long did you leave the racquets in the bag? When did you start getting ready for the Asian swing?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Racquet for about five days, six days. But I started to work out like four days after. Yeah, I was back home in Belarus training there, and came back here. Enjoyed some time with the family.

Q. You are playing Johanna Konta next. Are you worried about this injury?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I have nothing really to say because I have no idea, I've never actually see her play. I've just heard that she's a good, up‑and‑coming player, had some good results from this summer.
Obviously beating Andrea Petkovic, not an easy player to beat. It's going to be a little bit of surprise. I don't know. I probably have to watch some matches. My team will make some also scouting and come up with a game plan.
But I like to approach matches just focusing on myself mostly. So that's how I'm going to try to do.

Q. Do you remember the first time that you came to China?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: It might have been Olympics. I don't think I came before. I probably was the Beijing Olympics. That's what I remember the first time.

Q. What did you think when you stepped off the plane, on the bus coming in? What are your memories coming here?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Because it was the Olympics, that's what I remember. It's just a special, very special moment. It's a lot of people. The Silk Market definitely made an impression on me. I went with my mom. She kept bargaining with people so much that I think that probably left one of the biggest impressions.
But definitely the Opening Ceremony was the most incredible thing. It was in Beijing, it was really great. But it was really, really long (smiling).

Q. You actually were there in the stadium?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah. I mean, it was my first Olympics. My mom told me, You have to go at least once. I'm not sure if I'm going to go to any more Opening Ceremonies.
It was literally seven hours. My whole experience, we were in the stadium. We were waiting there. Then we just ran through when the team or country number, 204, I think, was passing by. We just ran across and walked back to the village because it was just too long.
It's actually a funny story because when we get there the first time, you get into the gymnastics stadium. Then they told you to wait for about hour, hour and a half. Instead of waiting and resting, we all were running around changing pins with each other, so we were exhausted.
Then you walk basically for three hours because you're in a line. Then you have to stand there. There's nowhere to sit in the stadium.
So I was so tired. We ran across, we walked for about 45 minutes to the village. When I sat down in the cafeteria, it was like 2:00 a.m., it was probably the most incredible feeling of my life. I felt so good just to sit down and rest.
Half an hour later when the ceremony was over, like 2:30 or something, the whole cafeteria was fully packed. There was nowhere to sit. All the athletes came back.

Q. Big news with Stacey Allaster stepping down. What are your thoughts on that decision? Any memories or anything that you have of working with her?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: It was surprising to me because when I was in Belarus, I didn't really have any connection to Internet. When I traveled on the way here, I got the news.
I would just love to speak to her personally, just to thank her for all she's done for us. We have to respect her decision for taking that next step in her life. She left a lot of great memories for the woman's game.
From this point we should honor what she's done, people who were before her there, and try to move our sport, our association, to the next level.

Q. We can see you are not in good form this year because you never got a title. As a former world No.1 and Grand Slam champion, have you ever experienced a great struggle?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Sorry, what was the question?

Q. This year you have never won a title.
VICTORIA AZARENKA: There has been years before that I've never won a title.

Q. You achieved the Australian Open in 2003 [sic]. After your injury, you underwent quite a long not good form. Have you ever experienced a struggle like this year?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, have you been watching my results this year?

Q. Yes. I just watched your match in this stadium.
Well, the year has been not easy for me. I have not won a title. But, first of all, the year is not over yet. I think my progress has been pretty good this year, looking from all the matches that I've played, players that I've played against, players I've beat this year.
So it's not the best results that I've had in the past. But looking from where I'm coming from, it's not too bad. I had two quarterfinals of a Grand Slam and I'm not even top 10 in the ranking. That's better than some of the top‑10 players probably.
I'm just looking forward to finishing the year strong and we'll see what happens. But right now I'm focused on today, not looking or analyzing what happened this full year.

Q. I want to ask about one personal question. Some people are saying that you're gaining weight. Is there any response towards this? Are you on a diet or plan to lose weight?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Can I just have no comments on this.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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