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July 15, 2017

Ekaterina Makarova

Elena Vesnina

Wimbledon, London, England


6-0, 6-0

THE MODERATOR: Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. Can I introduce our ladies doubles champions. Questions, please.

Q. 2017 Wimbledon ladies doubles champions, how does that sound? How special?
ELENA VESNINA: Very special. We were waiting for this title with Katia. When we lost at the French Open, we didn't play a good match there at all. We were sitting in the locker room, I told Katia, I was like, Katia, we have to win Wimbledon. We won French Open. We won it in 2013. We have to win Wimbledon.

Actually, it was our goal for, like, all the time that we were playing. We had that close final two years ago, lost from 7-5 in the third. We had it in our minds that we didn't finish something here. We need to finish it in the right way.

Q. You played with confidence throughout the tournament. Finishing with a double bagel, that must give you real pleasure?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yeah, this tournament, I don't know, it felt a little bit comfortable, but still had quite a tough draw. We had very tough opponents in the quarters. It was so close match. Just one break in each set.

So it was, yeah, 50/50. We didn't know until the end.

ELENA VESNINA: Who is going to win.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yeah, so very close. How we did it today I think is just a special day for us.

Q. Were the nerves building? You went on late at night. The long wait, did that affect you at all?
ELENA VESNINA: It was a little bit difficult.


ELENA VESNINA: We were sitting and waiting. We knew that it's going to be five sets. We knew it was going to be drama at the end. We knew it was going to be something.

Martina Navratilova told us, Do you know you girls have to finish till 11?

The score was 10-10. I was like, No way, they need to finish earlier.

After the first set, I looked at the clock. Okay, we're still fine.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yeah, but it was also strange situation, just before we go on court, they told us we need to finish until 11, but they wait 15 minutes.

ELENA VESNINA: We waited for seven hours, our match.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Now we have to be in a rush.

ELENA VESNINA: Certain time we have to finish. So it was a bit weird.

Q. That was your first one under the roof?

Q. The atmosphere, still a really good crowd.
ELENA VESNINA: It was great.


ELENA VESNINA: Thank you so much the crowd who stayed. I know it was a long day today, long wait. Yeah, but people in London, people in Wimbledon, they really appreciate every day. They coming here every day. It's fully packed, every court, Centre Court, Court 1, Court 18. It's great to see it. On the TV you see the people who is so exciting to watch. They coming. It's tradition, you know, for them.

On one side, they watching tennis. They supporting someone. On the other part, they want to be part of the history. They have strawberries, Pimm's. They enjoying themselves so much. Great to see it as well.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Our box was so loud, so supporting us. Thanks a lot. They were great today.

ELENA VESNINA: They were standing up all the time. We were looking at them. They were giving us some strength.


Q. Were you surprised by the score? Some games were very close, they were just unlucky, right?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yeah, when we finish the match, I told to Elena, it's 6-Love, 6-Love, but it doesn't seem like that. It was very close match, especially second set. They had couple chances. But we were, like, nothing we will give them. All is ours.

ELENA VESNINA: Yeah, I mean, of course the score doesn't look good. But the girls, they were fighting till the end. They were trying to change the match.

We knew if we give them a little chance, momentum can change anything. They're in the final. They won five matches here, so they are good. They're in a good shape.

Of course, we knew they will be a bit more nervous than us. We had this experience before. We were in the finals before. We took our advantage with this, our opportunity.

We step in and we were confident. We were aggressive. We knew what we have to do with this and that in that moment.

Yeah, on the big points, we were really confident at that time. Of course, they could win couple of games more. I agree, shouldn't be 6-Love, 6-Love.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: They didn't miss anything. Like, yeah, our game, I want to say that it was too perfect.

ELENA VESNINA: It was like a really perfect match for us.

Q. They're kind of a new pairing. Monica normally plays on the left. This tournament on the right.
ELENA VESNINA: Courtney is prepared (laughter).

Q. Do you game plan for that? Do you go out there and just play your game? How much preparation did you do scouting them and knowing what you need to do?
ELENA VESNINA: We only watched their semifinal match. We didn't see their matches before. Because we played before them yesterday, we had chance to look at their game, because they play like two and a half hours, the semifinal match.

I saw that Monica is staying on the deuce side, which is not usual for her. I mean, Chan also is playing good in both sides. She's a really good doubles player. She understands the game really well. Has amazing hands at the net, as does Monica. She's the same.

We kind of had a couple of thoughts how we have to serve on the big points, how we have to return, what we have to do if we're in a bad position. We had a couple, two, three things that we were following during the match. Everything worked perfect.

Q. What was the most difficult match to lose since 2013? The Martina Hingis match?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Yes, I think it's Wimbledon, for sure, because we were leading 5-2 with two breaks, then 5-All, then they closed the roof. We came back, and it was totally different situation. It was much brighter and everything.

ELENA VESNINA: For us it was different.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: That match, yeah, I remember that I was crying a lot after.

ELENA VESNINA: Me, too. Heartbreaking.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: It was our match, but we didn't finish it.

Q. What is it about Wimbledon that sets it apart from other places that you play throughout the year?
ELENA VESNINA: A lot of things. We're playing in the white clothes. We're playing on the grass, which make it more special. It's different tactics, different game. I mean, even the ceremony. We went to the Royal Box.

Q. How was that?
ELENA VESNINA: It was special. We didn't know a lot of person who was standing there, but we knew they are all very cool persons. It was very special. A great honor to stay and be part of this history, stay with the trophy.

We were reading our trophies. I was like, I want to read what it says, the trophy, I didn't want to give it back.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: It's history tournament. Yes, you want to be here, part of the history, for sure.

Q. Elena, sitting there now as a Wimbledon champion, how would you describe or articulate your relationship with this tournament in both singles and doubles?
ELENA VESNINA: I mean, it always going to be special for me. I play my semifinal, the first semifinal, in singles last year. It was amazing memories to be in the semifinal, to play on Centre Court against the greatest, Serena Williams.

I always liked play here in Wimbledon on grass. My game kind of suit. This surface suit my game. Every time when I was coming here, I was always enjoying to stay at house, walk to the courts, having dinner in the village. Even when I didn't had the successful year, I was still kind of feeling that I love coming back here.

I will always come back, even after my career. When I said that -- the chairman told me we're in club eight, we will have a credential for the rest of our life, I was like I always going to come back here after the career.

This atmosphere here, it's special. It's something that makes you feel honored. Makes you feel very thankful. You kind of want to suck this energy and feel it inside of you. Everyone here, all the players, they say the same things.

Somebody maybe doesn't like to be in this kind of, like you have to be white, this and this, but I think that's great and it makes it so special.

Q. Can you explain specifically what makes your strength as a team. Is it a question of friendship?
EKATERINA MAKAROVA: I don't know actually. Our secret is just a very good and nice relationship. We're very friendly. We enjoy our time every time together, laughing. Maybe Elena laughing more than me.

ELENA VESNINA: I'm talking more.

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: Maybe I'm more serious. Maybe that's something we find in the middle. It works on court out there.

ELENA VESNINA: She's lefty, I'm a right-handed. Which is also helpful sometimes when Katia serves, she has this dangerous lefty serve, especially on the grass it's not easy to return it. I know many players hate to return this serve. It's great to have this kind of weapon, so...

EKATERINA MAKAROVA: I don't know. We don't put any pressure. For me it's very important to feel comfortable on court when no one, like, I don't know, push you or screaming why you miss, why you did that. We just supporting each other.

ELENA VESNINA: Supporting each other. I know in this moment Katia will get nervous. I have to come to her and say few words, and she will be up, happy again. Katia knows as well, if I'm missing something, she will tell me a couple of things, she knows I'm missing because of that, of that. I'm like, She's right, she's right. I'm going to change it now.

We're coaching each other during the match, supporting each other, and at the same time we're also giving the energy. It change a bit for last couple of years. Before, we were more quiet in doubles, even when we were celebrating our points. Now we're more loud.

We were watching volleyball in Olympics last year. They're celebrating every match, Yeah. Hugging each other. I'm like, We have to do that.

Katia is, It's going to be difficult.

We try a bit different way, of course, yeah. But we were still celebrating and giving this energy to each other. It start working well. It's actually helping us.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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