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September 2, 1997

Sandrine Testud

Flushing Meadows, New York

Q. You were up 4-1 in the second. What went wrong?

SANDRINE TESTUD: What went wrong? (laughs) I think it was the whole match that went wrong, actually. No, I think she was playing good at the beginning, but I was a little bit nervous. And then, well, I came back in the first set, but today I just didn't have the -- I mean, the shots, you know, I was not feeling good on the court. My shots were not right. I was choosing always the wrong shot and I made a lot of mistakes that I usually don't make. And, I mean, it is just -- it made the difference. She was also so concentrate and I just give her so many points that I usually don't give, and I think it made the difference.

Q. Do you think it was her that bothered you or the atmosphere or just you and your game was off?

SANDRINE TESTUD: I think it was a little bit everything. I mean, I was playing my first quarterfinal. I was -- many people, but I was actually nervous a little bit at the beginning. But just -- normally, you know, you could be nervous, then you coming in, but it is just didn't happen today. The whole match I was -- I couldn't find the space. I couldn't find my shots and I mean, she is serving pretty good, so it was tough for me to return. She put a lot of pressure on you, of course, because she is serving quite good, so I had to serve also good and keep my serve. But, from the baseline it was just not right today.

Q. She is known for really just booming the ball. But did she mix it up more than you expected?

SANDRINE TESTUD: She mixed up a lot, yeah, but I don't think it is -- I mean, it is the problem. I think today was more my game that was not going right. Maybe I am starting to be a little bit tired. I was not, you know, running very well on the ball and, no, I think she took her chance and she was really focused on what she wanted to do. I mean, she deserved to win. She just played better than me today.

Q. Were you surprised she got to that -- she tracked down that final ball?

SANDRINE TESTUD: You have to say, yeah, because I think she is good on the backhand. When she has to run from the backhand side, I think she is pretty good. I mean, we made a mistake to come maybe too often to her backhand, because I think she is pretty good, you know, when she has a target and she can run for it. But, no, I mean, she was giving her best. It was a matchpoint, so --

Q. What do you think is her best quality? Is it the pace of her shots? Is it her ability to cover the court? Is it her attitude? What is it that you think has put her in the position?

SANDRINE TESTUD: What is good on her is she is tough to break. She has a good serve and it gives her also -- she is pretty aggressive. If you don't put the first serve in, she is also aggressive on the return of serve. So -- but for the rest, I think -- I mean, she doesn't -- I mean, I have played many other players who played much better than her for the moment. I think she improve a lot the last few months that I saw her, but, you know, still I think the main problem today was my game and not the opponent.

Q. You are the third player in a row who has lost to Venus Williams and come in here and said that the problem was with your game; not so much what she has done. Isn't that unusual, that this young player who has never been this far in a Grand Slam is making veteran players have problems like this?

SANDRINE TESTUD: Well, it is a good question. But, you know, it is maybe -- maybe it is her game, so maybe she is going to win the tournament, you know. You never know. Maybe the next player is going to happen the same thing. But, that is what I felt today on the court. I am not going to tell you about the other one. But, that is the reality. That is what -- I was not feeling good at all on the court today. I was nervous. I was maybe a little bit tired. But, I mean, she took her chance. She was good on it. I mean, because I came back in the first set and I thought maybe she was going to do maybe mistakes or whatever. But, it didn't happen. I think she is really focused on her game and what she wants to do. And, she deserved to win today.

Q. Does her maturity surprise you in any way? Does she do anything that psyches out her opponents because all her opponents seem to have the same problems?

SANDRINE TESTUD: Well, actually this first time I played against her so I cannot tell you. But, I mean, I don't -- you know, it is just -- I think really today was my game that was not going right. And, you know, maybe I am wrong. Maybe she is going to win the tournament, but I told you, for me, that is what I was feeling today.

Q. She has been known sort of like to the other players on the Tour as raw - talented, but a raw talent.

SANDRINE TESTUD: What do you mean "raw?"

Q. Doesn't really know to play as well as other players on Tour.


Q. Do you think other women are surprised that she has advanced this far, in quickly over the summer to get to this point in a grand Slam?

SANDRINE TESTUD: Well, she has a lot of quality, I think. Maybe she doesn't hit the ball like Hingis does; maybe she is not as fast as Kournikova, or -- but I mean, she is huge. She is so tall. She has a big serve. She returns pretty good. That is really two weapons that is important in the woman's game now. Once you serve good and return good, you know, everything can happen. She take her chance. She is coming at the net. She is not bad, I mean, she can volley, and, you know, if she is in the semifinal I think she has to do something. She can not get to the semifinal of a Grand Slam like this.

End of FastScripts….

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