home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


July 7, 2017

Victoria Azarenka

Wimbledon, London, England


3-6, 6-1, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Are you in a mindset where it's just completely gravy to you? You're here. Anything can happen. You can win, you can lose, you're psyched, you made your mark here at Wimbledon and sort of made your return?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I'm happy to be here. I'm still very ambitious and focused. I'm not on a Cloud 9 for making it to the second week, but I do appreciate everything that I have been able to achieve right now, and I don't take anything for granted.

You know, I'm still in the tournament. I can't be too happy. I'm never really satisfied until it's done.

Q. A lot of people are using that word "comeback." What's your reaction when you hear the word "comeback"? And if that's not a word you use, how would you describe what it is you're doing right now?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah, I don't like to call it a comeback, because I feel like it's just a new chapter in my life. It's kind of like a second career a little bit, and that's how it feels to me. I feel like whatever happened in the past is really in the past, and I have those achievements and, you know, all those titles and stuff, but now it's kind of I feel like a new me, in a way. I just want to continue to improve.

Q. It's also a new opportunity for Middle Sunday, different than any other Middle Sunday for you. With Leo here with you, how do you expect you'll spend Middle Sunday?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I'm definitely going to train, for sure. I'll probably bring him over here so he can play with other kids in the creche. In the tournament you can't really do much. It's just the routine.

Q. On the match, she started incredibly well. So how did you kind of reel her in? And how much of that was adjustments that you made and how much of it was maybe she kind of came back to earth a little bit in the second/third set? What was your sense?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I think she started to play well. I agree with that. But I felt like I started to make her look also good, because I didn't really do the right things. I played a little bit wrong. I didn't come up to my shots. I was too much on my back foot that I didn't follow through.

All those things kind of played into it, and she really did serve well. I didn't really have too many opportunities on her serve except that one game.

But other than that, I feel like in the second set I stepped up a little bit more. Throughout the match, I felt that there were a little bit too many up-and-downs, but in the important moments I felt like I played really well and I was doing the right thing in the important moment, which is I guess the positive, so I guess I have to keep doing the right things throughout the whole match.

Q. In the TV commentary, Kim Clijsters said you had been coached from your coach in the box. What was your response to that?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah, I honestly don't know what people are talking about, because I'm one of the players who rarely actually looks at the box. If that was coaching, I guess I missed it (smiling). I just feel that it's sometimes an unfair comment, because we see a lot of players -- I'm not going to name who -- having conversations with their boxes, so if my coach did something or did not, obviously I missed it, which is too bad (smiling). But, yeah, I can't really say more than that.

Q. Do you think players should be allowed to be coached from their boxes?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, it's weird, because we are allowed to have coaching in WTA and not here. I don't really care so much. As I said, I rarely look at the box. Maybe I should; maybe I shouldn't. I don't know. But even on the WTA events I rarely call my coach. I still feel you should figure it out yourself.

I mean, there is nothing -- I mean, "illegal coaching" sounds like he's done something criminal. It's, like, come on.

Q. You can say two of the greatest players in tennis have sons that are named Leo because of Federer. Could you share a little bit the origins of why you chose Leo as your son's name?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I actually didn't know that about Roger's son. Someone actually on Twitter mentioned that to me, which I thought was cool.

Leo, I thought it's just a simple name but very strong. I didn't know it had a British origin. I actually thought it was more, like, Latin or Italian or something like that.

I know kids like to make funny names with normal names, so it's hard to make anything up with Leo, so I was protecting my son there (smiling).

And also, I'm a Leo as a horoscope, so that's the closest resemblance.

Q. Speaking of names with British origins, do you know the story of why your parents chose your first name?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, my parents didn't choose my name, actually. It was my grandmother who chose that. They wanted to call me Daria, which is not my favorite name (smiling). So I'm glad you're not calling my Dasha here, Daria. So my grandma just came and she changed my birth certificate to Victoria, too.

Q. She wanted you to have an Anglo name, or she just liked the name?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: She just said I looked like Victoria.

Q. Did you have sympathy with Heather when she wasn't able to challenge when you got your match point in the serve?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I didn't really see her put up her finger, to be honest. But I didn't really look, so I can't judge. And I didn't care if she had it. I saw the ball was clearly in, so it don't matter.

Q. They said she put up her hand but she didn't actually verbalize it. Do you think if you pop your hand that should be enough? That's what the umpire was saying.
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I don't care. I mean, I don't know. I think you should make a clear sign. In that particular moment, it didn't matter to me. They could have give her a challenge. Someone told me they showed the replay and the ball was clearly in, so it doesn't matter.

Q. I guess it's one of the early matches since you have returned from being a mum. Did it feel difficult with the crowd being against you and Heather a feeling, obviously she's playing in England...
VICTORIA AZARENKA: No, it was something that I was expecting. I mean, I would be surprised if it was otherwise. So I have done that too many times in my career, you know. We don't have any Grand Slams in Belarus. If we had, it would have been pretty good, but, no, it's a normal situation and I understand this. So I'm just happy to be able to play and compete.

Q. It will be a pretty marquee round of 16 against Simona on Monday. You guys had a great match at the US Open a few years ago, a tough fight. Can you talk about the matchup a little bit? Are you excited to kind of see where your level is at against a player who has played a good few months?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah, definitely. Doesn't really matter to me who is on the other side. I always treat my matches, you know, and every opponent I respect the same way. But it is good for me to play against her. As you mentioned, we had a good match in US Open, and I need to raise my level to play against players like this. So I'm excited for the challenge, for sure.

Q. Do you think your level is there to match her? She's been playing well the last few months. Do you think you're there at that level already?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I think it depends on the day. It depends on the day overall. I don't think my level dropped, and I don't think it will drop. I think I'm a pretty well-rounded player, and I'm a big fighter. So right now I don't know how you compare that.

Q. What do you think the fans here at Wimbledon get when, on that second Monday, the men and women in singles are both playing, unlike the other majors?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: A lot of great tennis (smiling). You know, for the organizer it will be trouble for scheduling, but I think it's wonderful. Fans seem to be really engaged here, camping outside to be able to get in.

It's really cool to have that enthusiasm. Yeah, I hope they watch a lot of great matches. I hope there will be a lot of great matches.

Q. Could you just share a little bit about the mothering process. It's so fantastic. But can you put that into words or maybe something that just really surprises you about that?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I mean, there is a lot of great things. I mean, everything is great to me. My son is teething right now, and he's a little bit fussy at the moment. It's a little bit tough. All those moments, all those stages, I really enjoy.

I can't wait to, you know, hear him talk for the first time. It still doesn't really register in my mind quite yet, but really looking forward to it.

Q. I know you said before that it's something that sort of annoys you when people comment on it, but obviously on court your grunting sometimes can be quite loud.
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Oh, come on. That's too old.

Q. Today people on Twitter were talking about it.
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, they have been talking about it since Monica Seles. So who cares?

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297