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May 28, 2016

Venus Williams

Paris, France


7-6, 1-6, 6-0

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What's the secret to your youth?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Good genes. My sisters look just as young, so good genes.

Q. Maternal or paternal side?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I don't know. That's a good question.

Q. You started that match and then had the three-hour break. Talk about the break and then perhaps what you did coming back to be focused.
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I mean, after the break I felt a lot more clear about what I wanted to accomplish. It's never easy to play in France against a French player. Probably not easy for them either. So that's the extra pressure against you.

Honestly, she played really well. In the third I was able to capitalize on a couple of her errors, play some good points, and go on to the next match, literally.

Q. First time into the second week here in six years, I think. How did it feel to have persistence pay off on clay at this tournament, which I know you like a lot, even if the results haven't always been there.
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I love Paris, so it's a good excuse to stay a little bit long, right?

But I want to continue to play well. Each player is going to get better each round naturally, so I can't take anything for granted.

Q. What do you think you've been doing well here in Paris in the first week compared to maybe a few of the past weeks? More consistency? Hitting a cleaner ball? What do you think it is? Just feeling better?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah. Yeah. The life of a tennis player is a long one, and you just try to get better. I've just tried to get better, to sum it up. On all counts.

Q. You play Bacsinszky next, who has done well on the clay the last couple years. What are your thoughts on the sort of looks she'll throw at you?
VENUS WILLIAMS: She's confident here, clearly. You know, I don't even know the last time I played her. It's been ages. I'm sure she's a better player now than then, and hopefully I'm better, too.

So we'll see. Try my best.

Q. This has been become such a special city for Serena with her apartment here, but how special is it for to you get to spend that unique time with Serena here both playing, and I'm guessing some time in her apartment, as well.
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I watch a lot of Food Network shows. She loves it, the Food Network. End up watching a lot of I don't know what we're watching, so...

But it's nice. We always support each other. It's nice to be able to spend time together.

Q. You two are obviously so close, but was there a time or two in your life with your sister Serena when you really appreciated her deeply or the most?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I mean, maybe today in doubles. (Laughter.) What a great team member. There is never a moment that I don't. I've always been a big sister. It's the best job in the world. I think probably she thinks being a little sister is the best job in the world.

Q. Being a big sister, is that something that's easy or every once in a while is there a little bit of a challenge?
VENUS WILLIAMS: No, it's pretty easy because she's really nice. She's tough on the court, but definitely with us and the family she's really, really nice.

Q. A few of the other players have grumbled about there not being ranking points on offer at the Olympics. Wondering from a player council perspective or just as an Olympics lover what are your thoughts on that change, because it's different than the last few Olympics?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Who needs ranking points if you're playing for a gold medal? Gotta get your life in perspective. Get your life. I'm trying to get a gold. I don't need any points.

Q. Serena was asked about there was a letter written to the World Health Organization about the danger of Zika spreading more quickly via the Olympics essentially. Any concerns with that going there?
VENUS WILLIAMS: It could be a concern. I'm not an expert on pathogens. I've watched a lot of movies like Outbreak and stuff, but it didn't leave me in a position I could comment on this stuff.

Of course would we're hoping doesn't happen.

Q. You received a warning today for coaching. Wonder how that feels since you said it never happened to you in your career?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I know. I'm just like, I'm here to play tennis. That's it. I'm not here to do anything else. You know, I did have a conversation with the tour director afterwards, because I respect every person on the court and I want respect, too.

I was pretty clear on that with him.

Q. Did you see what might have triggered the warning or I don't know if there was anything there?
VENUS WILLIAMS: There was nothing.

Q. Does that doubles match being pushed back, the finishing, worry you at all as far as scheduling goes?
VENUS WILLIAMS: What can you do? We both want to be in a position to win both matches. It's important to us. We never want to let the other down, so I hustled as quick as I could to get on the court.

Thank God, because we had darkness. Fortunately, if we can win the match, we have to play again tomorrow. It was good to at least play part of the match.

Q. Was there someone at the Olympics in the past, another athlete who you met who was special or a memory that you have?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I mean, all the athletes that I loved at the Olympics I've never met, like Greg Louganis. I don't think I met Jackie Joyner-Kersee, those sort of athletes, the legends.

That would be amazing.

Q. Your emotions in doubles, especially as the tiebreak were wearing on, are a lot more expressive than maybe they ever are in singles. What is it about being with Serena on a team or the doubles format that ratchets up your expressiveness?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I usually am pretty centered. Also being centered also is a part of that you think you can win the match. So you don't have to get overly excited every single second because you believe you ought to be doing something great on the court.

So that's what you have to take out there. But there are times, too, when you opponents can't miss, so you get extra pumped. Think it was one of those moments today.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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