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November 1, 2015

Martina Hingis

Sania Mirza

Singapore, Singapore

HINGIS‑MIRZA/Suarez Navarro‑Muguruza
6‑0, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Congratulations. Were you surprised by how relatively straightforward that was against a pretty unexpected team?
MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I think they deserve to be where they are because they won the group and the two matches.
I've never played them before, so I didn't know‑‑ I mean, I watched the matches obviously. I watched last night when they played.
But Sania has pretty much an unbeaten record against them, and I definitely felt it out there. I felt the confidence she had going against them. I mean, there is not that much‑‑ we were pretty much better at what we do, and also as a team what we did.
But that it could look like that, like it was in the beginning, I didn't think it's going to be. It felt pretty good. Awesome just to be there and see Sania play incredible tennis today. I mean, it was the down the lines, the returns, and everything just was amazing to be part of it.

Q. Martina, you played last year with Flavia Pennetta and this year with Sania. You won much more with Sania than with Flavia, but good results with her, too. What has been the main difference you think?
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, what has been the main difference? (Laughter.)
MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I think, you know, also that we can train together. That was the main reason why‑‑ you know, we practiced together; we were there for each other.
I always said like Sania has one of world's best forehands. Whether singles or doubles, I think there is not many forehands like her who can hit the ball so hard like her and set me up.
You know, the confidence grew with every victory, every tournament. It just like was bigger and bigger. Especially that Wimbledon title, because I like playing on grass and the way we played. After that, everything just start clicking together.
Obviously the first three months, first three tournaments, we were already like amazing. But I think it's just like knowing. The understanding of each other grew even more. We were already winning from the beginning, but after that was even more and more.
But I think you have to work on that. I mean, doesn't fall from heaven. We didn't have always perfect moments. But I think that was very important for me to make that decision. Our priority is the doubles. In Flavia's case, which is understandable, now she has a US Open title, she has Grand Slam victory, so it's not her priority.
Obviously she was a great partner, too. I mean, thanks to her we were in the finals of a Grand Slam, US Open last year, and we won couple titles.

Q. Do you think you're playing better now than you were a few years ago in doubles or getting...
MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I won nine Grand Slams in doubles already before. It's not like I was a bad player before. I think it's just now I can go back, and my experience is also a key factor in what we do today and the success we have.

Q. Sania winning is contagious. You can get pretty used to it. Obviously we're at the end of the season. Some players might say, Man, I wish there was another tournament, and keep going. How excited are you to actually have your off‑season, and how grueling, I guess, has this season been for both of you?
SANIA MIRZA: I mean, I think ‑‑ I was looking at the stats. We won like 53 matches before this tournament. That's a lot of matches, you know, even if that's just doubles mentally to keep going.
And we won a lot. You know, touch wood. So you have to try and peak every match that you play. Keep that motivation and inspiration and confidence going.
Yeah, we are really‑‑ I am, I know, and I know Martina is‑‑ we have we both of to just take some time off and rebuild and regroup a little bit.
Not that winning will get stale, but tennis can get stale, you know, and just to push ourselves. So we need to be fresh when we come back in January. It's already November, so we basically have a couple weeks off and get back into training and playing the other stuff we have to play.
So, yeah, we're looking forward to just sitting back, maybe by the pool or on the beach for a bit, and, yeah, taking it from there.
MARTINA HINGIS: I think we deserve a little vacation here.
SANIA MIRZA: I started my vacation. I'm on gluten already.
MARTINA HINGIS: But it's also like nice to spend some days home and sleep in your own bed.

Q. 15 years ago you won, what, three clams? Now seems like you're a little better. Forehand's more powerful; first serve more powerful, no? Feel like you've improved to a degree?
MARTINA HINGIS: But, I think it's also more important, when we started playing together maybe my serve wasn't as good, but there is the confidence. I know with the matches, like you just play more and you know what to do better, what to rely upon.
In the beginning I was losing more of my serves, and now, if I improve just a little bit and I try to really work on it and practice that, and I think ‑‑ you know, we push each other when we play each other.
Like playing with Sania, I mean, nobody hits the ball harder when you're at the net. So I'm prepared for the worst, and everything else after almost seems like easier and more natural.
Even playing crosscourt forehands when we practice, I think we just constantly make each other better and push each other. The same with the backhand cross. I mean, she's hit some amazing backhands today.
I think also I can rely on any forehand, like the returns and everything and come in. Yeah, we click, and also we push each other. I think that's the key to our success.

Q. Sania, on that, like five years ago, your backhand is much stronger, no, when you first come on?
SANIA MIRZA: Much stronger than five years ago?

Q. Right. Because your forehand has always been huge, but the backhand is...
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, as you grow older you understand. We've also worked on our fitness and a lot of things. It's not‑‑ I mean, like Martina said earlier, doesn't just come. You have to keep working. It's a constant struggle. It's a constant work ethic that you need to keep putting that in.
And we have done that. It takes long. It doesn't just happen. Sure, I think that my ‑‑ I always thought my backhand return was better than my forehand return, funnily enough.
But for me, my return is my biggest strength. When it comes together, everything comes together in a final like today, then everything seems really good. We've already had an incredible season so everything obviously was working the whole season.

Q. What are the mechanics for when a doubles team practices during the off‑season? Singles players pick where you're going to train and it's just you and you have practice partners and things like that. A little bit more coordination between the two of you. Do you have any idea where you're going to train together, if you train together?
SANIA MIRZA: We literally have had no time to think about it. She's going to be in India in a few weeks to play a certain exhibition, and then I'm playing in December. We actually don't have that much time.
I think we've played enough this year to kind of be coordinated. I don't think if we don't play together for two months it's going to really change anything. The goal is to be prepared for Australian Open. We're going to play a couple weeks before that. You know, maybe come in earlier a little bit into Australia and try and train.
We haven't had a discussion. As soon as we know, we'll let you know. (Laughter.)

Q. This year you came together later in the year and ran away with it. Next year the other teams, you don't know exactly what to go after. Is there anything that you're going to put in place? Any plans?
MARTINA HINGIS: I think I'm not scared of anything right now. I don't want to sound cocky, but we've been thrown different things at us, and we were always able to find a winning formula and find a solution.
I think whatever happens, happens. Like the other ‑‑ I have to try ‑‑ I mean, there were great moments. We just also fight back a lot of the times. It's not like Wimbledon was given to us. We were 5‑2 down in the third set and end up winning.
US Open we were 5‑0 down against the Chan sisters and end up winning.
It's also fighting back and trying to like ‑‑
SANIA MIRZA: ‑‑‑ find a way.
SANIA MIRZA: I think nine months is a long time for people to figure out how we play. It's just that I think we are able to lift our games to a certain extent. When people say, okay, they do A, we try and find another gear when they go up to that.
So I don't necessarily think just because we're winning straight sets people haven't figured us out. It's just that we are playing really well. At the risk of sounding cocky, we are playing the best tennis out there, and that's why we are winning that much. It's pretty simple.
I think it's about finding those gears. When someone goes into fourth gear we try and find that fifth year. And we've been able to do that. Will we be able to do that next year is the question only time can answer.
Right now, I feel like we're able to do it, so hopefully we can do it next year again.

Q. On a scale of one to ten, what level are you guys on on the swagger scale?
SANIA MIRZA: Swagger scale? (Laughter.)

Q. To finish the season.
SANIA MIRZA: On or off court?

Q. I'll take two answers off of both, one on and one off.
MARTINA HINGIS: You go ahead.
MARTINA HINGIS: Off court it's probably like...
SANIA MIRZA: We're about a seven (laughter.)
MARTINA HINGIS: Actually today felt much better than yesterday.
SANIA MIRZA: No, I think‑‑ I mean, by swagger I don't know exactly what you mean. We do feel very confident every time we step on the court. We believe we're the best team out there and the two best tennis players on the doubles court, and I think half the battle is won there.
So it's pretty high. I don't want give to a number, but it's pretty high.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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