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July 4, 2017

Angelique Kerber

Wimbledon, London, England

A. KERBER/I. Falconi

6-4, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. The first set there were a lot of unforced errors. Are you a little bit worried about your play?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think it was a good match, a good first match for me. I mean, I was enjoying to being back on the Centre Court.

I think, yeah, to playing first rounds in Grand Slams are always tough, especially with my first-round match that I lost in Paris. I was actually just thinking about point by point, trying to finding my rhythm during the whole match.

Q. How was it being on Centre Court as the No. 1?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: It was good to playing again on the amazing Centre Court. I mean, a lot of memories came back when I walk on the Centre Court. Playing there again, it's, yeah, one of the best courts to play. It's traditional, so it was really great to being back.

Q. What is one of the major challenges about being No. 1 in the world, besides trying to stay No. 1?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think the expectation you have. I mean, there are much more expectation, much more pressure, from me, from outside, from everything. You have much more things also to do.

So I think the biggest challenge is to schedule your day completely new than if you were, like, yeah, 10 in the world.

Q. What have you changed in terms of your preparation since you became No. 1?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think it's just the process. It's experience. You have to learn. You have to get through all the things. There are up and downs.

Right now I am trying to making things not too complicated again, just trying to focusing more on my tennis, taking time for myself, being really here and focusing right now only on the next day and the next match, yeah.

Q. How much are you enjoying being No. 1? It's something you dreamed of. You're talking about all the pressures and stuff that comes with it. It must be fantastic.
ANGELIQUE KERBER: It is. I'm still enjoying it. Of course, there are things that are a little bit tough and hard to do, as well. But, I mean, it was always a dream. Right now I'm long time actually in the No. 1. I'm still enjoying it. I will, yeah, always enjoying it, that I was one day the No. 1, even like when I will look back in five years.

Q. What is the most fun? Is it trying to reach No. 1 or actually being No. 1?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: Fun (smiling)? I think now I can say that it's easier to go there than to stay there. I mean, of course it's tough to reach the No. 1 place and also winning Grand Slams. But if you are there, it's much harder to, yeah, being there and making all the things you have to do. You have to learn a lot of new things. New experiences. So I think it's harder fun to be there.

Q. Wimbledon presents a particular challenge. British crowds in particular love to get behind the underdog. As you're the No. 1, almost everyone who plays you is going to be the underdog. How do you deal with that?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think this is also a process. I know how it is to be the underdog and playing against the favorite player. You have then the crowd behind you.

But I think the crowd here is still good. I mean, I remember the last years I played well here, even I was not the underdog, they are still supporting the players. I mean, they are really looking forward to seeing good tennis. I think this is the important thing for the fans and also for us, the players.

Q. There seems to be a few contenders for the title this year. Do you think Johanna Konta is a serious contender?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think there are a lot right now. I think the pressure is on a lot of players.

We will see. It's still a long way to go there. But Johanna is, for sure. She played good on grass in Eastbourne, and also I think the week before she played well, reached the final. She's, as well, a really dangerous player, especially on grass.

Q. What makes her so dangerous?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think, yeah, she hits the ball very fast, had a great serve when I was playing against her. I think she had, like, 80% first serves in. This is what makes the game dangerous on grass.

Q. To keep your world No. 1 ranking, it would help to get to the final. Does that make you more determined to get to the final?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: You know, I'm not thinking about this. I was never thinking about this. Also when I became the No. 1 in New York few months ago, it's not in my mind. It's in my mind to playing good tennis again, to winning matches. This is my goal for here and for the next match, of course.

Q. The next match is Kirsten. That's a tough second-round draw.
ANGELIQUE KERBER: It is. I remember we played very good matches in the past. I think it will be another tough match. All the matches and all the players are tough to play. So it actually doesn't matter.

I will try to go out there again, finding my rhythm, and enjoying to playing on grass. This is what I love.

Q. How do you rate your form at the moment this year? Do you feel you're on the verge of recapturing your best form or are you still trying to find it?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think I'm on my way. I think the last few months I had, like, a few up and downs. But I think also a lot of things that I've learned from, new experience. So now I'm feeling good. I'm feeling that, yeah, I'm looking like actually not only on here, I'm looking like for the next half a year. I think that I was practicing good in the last few weeks after Paris.

This is the first step I did already.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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