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August 14, 2016

Ekaterina Makarova

Elena Vesnina

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

6‑4, 6‑4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Elena, can you take us back to when you were trying to get to Rio in the first place, all the emotions you were going through back then about not even being totally sure you'd make it here to play.
ELENA VESNINA: Yeah, we had a tough trip to make it here to Rio. We were really in stress in one moment. Yeah, when we missed our connection. We were trying to get here as early as we could because we played final in Montréal, we won the tournament there. We knew it's different courts, different balls. We wanted to get here as early as we could just to get ready. Yeah, it was stressful.
I think this situation even help us a little bit, you know, to be ready for everything in Rio. You know, what was happening in the village, everybody was talking about that. We were ready for everything. We didn't complain about anything. Food, nothing was, like, bothering us. We stick together. We knew why we came here. We knew what we want. It's incredible that we won this gold medal at the end.

Q. What day were you supposed to get here and when did you actually get here?
ELENA VESNINA: We were supposed to get here I think Tuesday morning, and we arrived here Wednesday afternoon or, like, late, day later. We were lucky we got last two sets in eco class. We were sitting like this. We had business class before. We gave up our business class tickets because we lost them and couldn't get it again. We just got the economic class.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Another reservation was for Friday, so we were lucky for Tuesday.
ELENA VESNINA: Last two seats we got because the plane was full. Not even one seat was available.

Q. Elena, you played with Bruno. Did he tell you something to get here in Rio, to get the medal?
ELENA VESNINA: Since Australian Open, we won. Katia also played with Bruno in US Open.
First of all, he congratulates us yesterday. He sends us message that, You're half Brazilian now because Brazil loves you and Rio loves you, good luck and you can do it. He was telling me it's going to be incredible. He promised me. He was like, You will love it here.
You know, he was right. We love it here.
ELENA VESNINA: We love it here. It's the best place in the world. We won our gold with Katia here. It's incredible for us.

Q. You won two slams, Roland Garros 2013, and US Open also. What is the difference in terms of feelings, emotions and everything else?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: For us, with Elena, we wanted the Olympic medal, especially gold medal, of course, since we were juniors. It was our dream from the kids. We really wanted to have a medal of Olympics.
It's much more for us than the Grand Slam. We were all the time talking about that, that Grand Slam is great tournaments, we're so happy that we won two Grand Slams, but the Olympic Games for us means much more, a lot. We are play for our country. We won the gold medal. It's amazing feeling. Our dream came through.
ELENA VESNINA: It was always priority for us, as well. Since we played in London with Katia, we always had in our mind that we need to qualify for Rio. Even we had tough moments. We didn't play doubles since US Open last year, till Madrid this year. This break actually help us. We feel each other even better.
We're good friends off the court. We really have the same psychology with Katia, let's say like this philosophy, that Olympic Games is more important for us than everything else.
ELENA VESNINA: It's unusual for tennis players. But I think many tennis players will say the same thing. It's changed now in tennis.

Q. It's interesting on what you say with that point as far as desire to win an Olympic medal. How much of that has also come from the fact that historically Russia has won so much, Yevgeny winning gold, Dementieva winning gold? How much of that was motivation?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: We were watching Yevgeny Kafelnikov in Sydney. I was watching girls in Beijing when we took three medals.
ELENA VESNINA: Three medals.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: I really wanted all the time to just be on the podium, to have a medal. When we started with Elena, we were working for it, going for it. All injuries, all tough moments, we just had this in our mind that we want to win the Olympic Games.
ELENA VESNINA: Yevgeny, he's from Sochi. I'm from Sochi. I mean, for me and for Katia as well, this means more than the world, especially to get the gold medal.
We were really, really thinking about that. Like I said before, it was always our priority, this medal. Even I didn't get in singles this Olympic Games, I didn't care. I wanted to play doubles with Katia because I knew we could get this medal. I mean, we did it. It's incredible.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: I just wanted to say, at the beginning when we came here with the tough trip and all, that's tough. We practicing two days with Elena. I was crying during the practice. I didn't feel my best tennis.
But I was crying not because I don't feel my best tennis, I just really wanted this medal. I was kind of emotional.
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yeah. Why I'm not playing the best tennis right now? I'm just won this medal, yes, unbelievable.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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