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June 1, 2016

Venus Williams

Paris, France


6-2, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You had a quick start but then she sort of seemed to find her form. How did things play out from your point of view?
VENUS WILLIAMS: She played really well. I respect that she played really well. The first few games she made some errors, and in the last 12 games I made all the errors (smiling). You know, she played to win, and I give her credit for really competing well.

Q. What was it like for you just the last few days just not being able to play? How much were you able to practice, if at all? What were the conditions like on the court?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, it's not real easy to get a lot of practice because you're on-site all day waiting. You have to be here in case they change a court or if you're first or second on. Not ideal, but I have done it before. All the players have done it before. You've got to be ready to go when they call the matches.

Q. Did the court feel heavier to you today?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, definitely, for sure. I mean, the courts have been heavy all tournament. But there are some shots I went for, and they landed a lot shorter because the balls were so heavy. You know, you get in trouble with those short balls.

Sometimes it's hard to change the pattern of kind of how you have been playing all week, so the conditions are definitely heavy.

Q. Overall, how satisfied are you with your run here?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I mean, I wanted to play better today. The most disappointing part is just not playing well, and that's disappointing. I give credit to my opponent, and it was just a frustrating day of kind of like balls not going in or hitting the net tape, so it's frustrating for me.

But, you know, I competed as well as I could out there and she played a smart match. That definitely added to my troubles.

Q. You mentioned the ball being heavy. Can you feel that in your arm at all when you're striking it? Does it take more of a toll?
VENUS WILLIAMS: It could. I don't know. When I'm out there, I keep swinging and if something is bothering me I put it out of my head. I'm not the kind of player that focuses on pain, you know. If you're going to be out there, be out there. If not, don't. (Smiling.)

Q. With the schedule pushed back the way it has been, the women technically would have to play four matches in a row to finish on time. Do you think that the tournament should prioritize finishing on time or prioritize giving the players the breaks that they would normally have in a Grand Slam?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Typically you have to finish on time. I think if there is any more delays, though, it's not good to play two matches in one day. I think that's where they have to draw the line.

Q. There were a couple of players on the men's side that sort of walked off the court yesterday because they didn't feel like the conditions were playable. Is that something you would ever do, or do you think that's something the players should take into their own hands, or is that something you should rely on the umpires and supervisors to figure out?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I didn't see that, but I think the conditions were not playable yesterday. It was really bad.

It's hard to see. The balls are wet, the courts are wet. I wasn't out there the whole time that some of the matches were on, but it just seemed terrible.

It should be fair. You know, some players shouldn't have to play in that weather and others not. It doesn't seem quite equal.

Q. You head to grass season next. Are you doing just Wimbledon or now that the grass season leadup is three weeks long, is there any chance you would add a tournament in that middle week?
VENUS WILLIAMS: No. I can't deal with any more rain. I can't. That's one of the main reasons I don't play before Wimbledon. Before, you know, obviously it was not a lot of time, but I can't sit indoors anywhere longer than what you may have to, here or Wimbledon. I will be hopefully where it's dry.

Q. Would you draw the line at two matches in one day? Because the women are used to playing back-to-back days as far as three sets go.
VENUS WILLIAMS: Two matches in one day?

Q. Is that sort of your ceiling? Or you don't see the problem with the women playing consecutive days, I mean?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Oh, back to back is fine. That's what we do all year.

But two matches in one day, especially if the rest of the draw isn't doing it, I don't think that's a good idea.

Q. I think last year you and Serena used Jack Nicklaus' grass court a little bit to get warmed up for Wimbledon. Are there any plans to do that again?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Oh, I guess if I'm invited back (smiling). I forgot about that, actually. Thank you for reminding me. That's a good idea.

Q. Your thoughts on Serena. Serena is into the quarters. She's going for tying Steffi Graf here. What are your thoughts on just how her year is going? You obviously have a better perspective on her than any of us.
VENUS WILLIAMS: What do I think about the year? I think she's played an amazing year. A lot of finals, not as many wins as she wanted, but she ran into some players who couldn't miss. That happens all the time when you're No. 1 in the world.

Every match she plays is usually against a player who is at their best. So to be able to play that well, day in and day out, is a major accomplishment.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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