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August 10, 2017

Elina Svitolina

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

E. SVITOLINA/V. Williams

6-2, 6-1

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. A very strong performance today against a very tough opponent. There were a few moments in that first set in the second game, Venus has break points where she broke you serving for it. How did you overcome that and keep putting the pressure on her and keep control of the match?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, of course I was expecting that she would put pressure on my serve and, yeah, that's the way she's playing.

I was just trying to stay really focused and on the things that I can control. You know, to prepare my serve to be ready for next shot straight away, because she turns very quickly.

Yeah, I was really focused. And I was very happy that I could really stay like that during all the match and didn't do so many unforced errors. And, you know, was quite solid performance for me.

Q. You're kind of developing your reputation for being a big match player now. You're 22 years old. And I don't think there's many females out there that can say they've beat both Williams sisters. So how does it feel?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, it feels amazing, you know. I don't really think about these things so much because, you know, then you relax and you just, yeah, just don't do the right things.

So of course it brings me a lot of confidence. And the matches like this and when I came into this tournament, I was just trying to play match by match because, you know, off the injury, yeah, I didn't know what to expect from myself.

Q. Just talking about your injury here, I just wanted to find out how is that and, you know, just for the rest of the tournament, you know, what are your thoughts moving ahead?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Well, all the athletes suffering from little injuries all the time. It's quite normal because we are competing so many weeks in the year.

So, you know, I have my physio here who is trying to do his best to just make me 100% for each match, and that's what we're going to do tonight. You know, recover and, yeah, see how it goes tomorrow. You know, it's a new day. You never know how I'm going to feel tomorrow. Just can do everything what's in our power today.

And my injury is fine, and I don't feel so much pain. But hopefully tomorrow will be the same and, yeah, it will be a good day again.

Q. You were the actually higher-ranked player in that match. Did you feel like the favorite going in?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Not really, because when -- I know Venus for many years. And, you know, when they announce that she turned professional in 1994 and I was just born in this year, I was like, okay, then I need to work really hard in this match.

So it was -- yeah, it was a great privilege to share the court with her and, yeah, it was even better to beat her and play my game tonight and really stay very solid with my game.

So this was very, very good day today.

Q. You talked about being born in 1994 and obviously the Williams sisters were your idols and many people's idols growing up, right? But I'm just wondering what are your thoughts now, being at a certain level where you're looked upon yourself as being an idol to other young girls?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Of course, when I was watching their matches, you know, I was getting this inspiration from their game, because they was always big fighters. And even now, you know, they give everything on the day.

So I try to do the same thing always each match. You know, I just try to prepare and go out there and just give everything what I have on the day. Of course, there can be bad days and good days, but, you know, on a bad day you still need to be ready to give everything what you have.

Q. I just wondered, facing an opponent like Venus, what is sort of the toughest part about that? There seems to be more pace maybe on her ground strokes than a lot of your opponents, I would guess.
ELINA SVITOLINA: I think the main thing is her experience. You know, in the second set, I was 2-0 up and then she was 15-30 on her serve. You know, she played two amazing points. You know, one ace and one really, like, winner from her forehand.

So, you know, these kind of things you don't really expect from other players, because sometimes under pressure they do something not normal, you know, and not the right thing. And she knows what she can do, what she can't, and she really manages very well.

So, you know, you really need to wait to look for your opportunities when you play such experienced players. Don't let them have any chances because, otherwise, you can, yeah, just get killed.

Q. Just a more general question. Do you have a Plan B when you play? And what makes you switch to it in a match if you do.
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yes, of course, I always have a few plans in my head, you know, but it always depends on my game as well, how I feel tonight, and depends also on conditions. If you play a day match, you know, you need to think how you plan to hit, in the cold weather as well. You know, there's always small adjustments.

It's not really Plan A, Plan B. It's always just small adjustments. If it's not going well or you see that you are not serving good, you know, you're just trying to think, okay, I'm going to serve -- I'm going to take the speed down. But I'm going to put the first serve in.

So it's, yeah, just some things like this, but everyone, I think, does this.

Q. I think it was the third game in the second set she had a couple of break point opportunities against you. How important was that to hold your serve? Did it kind of ease things the rest of the way? Because with a player like Venus, do you feel like you give her that opportunity to get back into the game and she could take it and run with it?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, of course, that game was very important. I knew it, and that's why I was extremely focused on my serve, on my second shot as well. Because if you give her small opportunity, she can get back into the game and then it's equal for everyone.

So that's why it was extremely -- as I said, it was extremely important to serve well and then put pressure on her and to don't do unforced errors, you know, like easy shots.

But I think my level now is much, much better. So I can handle this. Of course, at some point I can miss, but most of the points I think are much better now. I can handle it better.

Q. I've seen you out there today. You were very dominant. And obviously with Serena, you know, at a certain age in her career. It seems like it's wide open in the women's game. Just wanted to get your thoughts on potentially being the best player in the game. Is that something you think about and, you know, your thoughts on that?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, of course. At some point of course there would be talking about that Serena would retire. One day it's normal, because she's playing tennis for so many years already, and she won so many titles in her career. So of course there will be one moment that she going to stop.

But I don't really think about that I can be or someone can be the best player. I think it's quite normal to have, like, five, six, seven girls who can win a Grand Slam or play well, you know. It's quite normal.

Yeah, it's interesting to see who is each week different, different winner. I think it's normal.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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