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October 6, 2016

Elina Svitolina

Beijing, China


6-3, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How do you feel about your performance today? You were very aggressive.
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, I'm really, really happy that I won today. Really happy that I finish with two sets because last time playing in Montreal, I was really close to win. I was serving I think two times for the match and didn't close the match. So today I'm really happy that I won and I served it out in 6-5.

Q. This year you met Kvitova many times. Different types of players. Which one do you like to play against?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, actually I just try to focus every point and try every match to play my best. Of course, there been some good wins for me, but also some disappointing lose.

Yeah, I'm just trying to learn from each match, win or lose, doesn't matter, then just move on and improve every day, try to give my best, 100% at each practice, each match.

Q. You won against Serena in Rio, No. 1. Now you're beating Kerber, No. 1. Is it easier to play your best tennis against the best players than lower-ranked players?
ELINA SVITOLINA: No, actually I lost to Kvitova in New York. In Olympics, as well. She's higher than me. It doesn't matter. I go out there and try to win each match. Maybe one day it happens, maybe one day it's not happening.

So, yeah, I just try to focus on my game and stick to the plan which I do with my coach, just to take point by point, of course, day by day.

Q. Do you feel it's different when you're going into a match against a world No. 1 instead of a lower-ranked player?
ELINA SVITOLINA: It's little bit different, of course, when they announce. You have this weird feeling because you realize you're playing against world No. 1. Yeah, of course, it's stuck on your mind.

The main thing is to just stay in the moment, to think about the plan, about the match, what is my next step, next action. So I try to really don't think about it. If I think too much, I lose my way.

Of course, Angelique or Serena, they're not letting you play your game. If you're out for even two, three seconds, they just going to do winners. Yeah, I mean, they are there all the time. They're not letting you go.

Q. It's very difficult sometimes to game plan against a player like Kerber because she can do so many things very well. What was your game plan today against her? What did you do to kind of keep her off balance?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Main thing was just mentally to be focused. Even if you play good point against her, she can play some amazing shot back. Still you need to be, Next point, don't eat yourself from inside. This is really important when you play against her because sometimes she gets some balls which is, like, unbelievable, playing amazing shots from down the line.

Yeah, so sometimes it's really tough. But the main thing is just to try to stay focused each point and, yeah, follow the plan, never really think about what happened few moments ago.

Q. You were saying you've had some very big wins this year, some very disappointing losses. How do you assess your 2016 season right now?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Up and down, I think. I don't know. I don't really think about the season yet because it's not finished yet. Still I have some goals. I still want to play in Zhuhai. Hopefully I can play there and play well.

But it been up and down, especially on the Grand Slams. I expected little bit more from myself. Unfortunately, it didn't happen. So I'm just trying to focus each match.

Today was a good win for me. The way I played was really good. I was going for my shots, sometimes just staying with the ball, playing round, not missing in important moments.

I think I'm moving in a good way. Playing against top players, this is the main goal. I try to really stay on their level and then get better.

Q. You mentioned Zhuhai. What is the motivation for you to play Zhuhai? What does that tournament mean for you?
ELINA SVITOLINA: The main goal actually from the start of the year was Singapore, but now it's not happening (smiling).

Zhuhai is also, you know, a big event. The atmosphere is great there. It's like the second after Singapore. So there's always motivation. Just 12 players there, I think. Yeah, it's really special to play there. It's still big, big tournament. Yeah, it's really special for me.

Q. Are you still working with Justine Henin?

Q. What has she brought to you and your game since the start of your collaboration?
ELINA SVITOLINA: I've been asked this question many times. I don't know if I'm answers are getting boring.

It brought me new experience. She was sharing a lot how she been playing. Of course, I saw it many times on videos. But also was important to know what she was feeling when she was going on court playing against top players and beating them very easy sometimes. It was really, really important for me to know what was going on in her head because she was playing really brave, and in the same time always really competitive.

Yeah, I try to use this sometimes, trying to take something from her. Obviously, I cannot take everything because she's completely different person, different personality, different game, different style of the game. Just trying to take small bits. Just trying to focus on my game and see what works and what doesn't.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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