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February 7, 2016

Venus Williams

Kailua Kona, Hawaii, USA

USA - 3

Poland - 0

V. WILLIAMS/M. Linette

6-1, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: We'll take questions for Venus.

Q. A little bit of sun yesterday and a lot of wind today. Tell us how it affected the match and how you were able to adjust.
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, during warmup at 8:15 in the morning, there was no wind. Then walk out on the court, it was just so windy.

Just had to be a little more patient, get ready for the ball to do anything. But I was happy to be able to still get through the court and be able to dictate, which is what I like to do.

Q. I got the sense early on your leg was a little sore and you just wanted to get out of there as fast as you could, play as well as you could.
VENUS WILLIAMS: I always want to get out there and win fast, but it doesn't always happen that way.

But I guess when I had a short ball, I came in. Just wanted to be able to get in to the net. When I get my racquet on a volley, usually I'm able to do a lot with it.

Q. During the introduction, they introduced the Polish team. Then the American team comes out. We were waiting for Venus. You could just tell the crowd was ready to roar. All of a sudden they start with the music. So where was Venus?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I was in the bathroom. Yeah, they started without me. The show must go on (laughter).

Q. What was this experience like for you as a whole, the week leading up, the matches?
VENUS WILLIAMS: When Mary Joe first said the tie was in Hawaii, I literally threw my hands up in the air, I kid you not. I was like, Yes! I've just been very excited since then, just pumped to be here.

This has been the most enthusiastic crowd I've ever played in front of, for Fed Cup, or even at home. The enthusiasm, exciting. When they announced they were going to play the doubles, the crowd was so excited. You can hear them right now.

It's just been a pleasure to play for that.

Q. Venus, with your win, you have clinched this particular Fed Cup victory. Could you speak what it means to the Fed Cup team overall. Now you get to go on to the next round. Help us understand why you're in contention in Fed Cup.
VENUS WILLIAMS: I love playing. I love looking forward to playing the next ties, seeing who we're going to play when the draw comes out. I love all of that.

I think I had a little bit of an advantage today because Sloane had a chance to play against Magda, so had a nice scouting report. I was able to really get started quickly. I think she did a little of the work beforehand for me. I kind of like had the heads-up.

Q. Could you assess the level of your game today, where you want that to take you this year. What are your priorities this year?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Definitely the level was better than yesterday. I had a few more errors yesterday. Especially with the conditions, I served really well. A lot of times I had to take some pace off just to get some first serves in.

But definitely feeling like I'm playing my game well in terms of just being aggressive, dictating, doing what I have to do.

The rest of the year, I want to win every match I play. Who doesn't?

Q. (Question regarding the Olympics.)
VENUS WILLIAMS: It's very close, but not close enough. I can't wait to be there, to just participate, be on the team. I can't wait. I've lived for the Olympics ever since I played my first one. That's high on my list, high on my list.

Q. I'm assuming from here that you're heading to California?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I'll be there.

Q. First time in how many years? A tournament without Venus is not a tournament.
VENUS WILLIAMS: Thank you. That's kind of you to say. But the tournament did go on without me.

It's a great tournament. It's a great event. Serena's definitely played the biggest role in me returning. To be able to go back and be there with her, it will be very special for me.

Q. How do you celebrate a Fed Cup win in Hawaii?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Not as much as you like. You get on a plane.

But as a team, we'll cherish the moments until we are reunited again at the next Fed Cup.

Q. No mai-tai?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Not in the middle of the season. You know that puts on weight, right (laughter)?

Thank you, guys.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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