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November 12, 2017

Kathy Rinaldi

Coco Vandeweghe

Sloane Stephens

Alison Riske

Shelby Rogers

Minsk, Belarus


6-3, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: We would like to congratulate the team of the USA, the champions for 2017. Questions to the team.

Q. 17 years for America to bring home another Cup. How does it feel?
COCO VANDEWEGHE: It feels frickin' unbelievable. Believe and unbelievable. I'm ready for vacation.

CAPTAIN RINALDI: This moment was amazing. This team is incredible. I love all you guys, some of my best friends. And my family here. I wouldn't want to spend it with anyone else. You guys are amazing.

Q. Talk a little bit about your first year, you bring home the Cup.
CAPTAIN RINALDI: It's been an incredible ride with these ladies. Bethanie Mattek-Sands, and Lauren Davis at home. It's just an incredible year. Like they said, we're family. We've had each other's backs. It's been a lot of fun.

It was a very tough match. These players were incredible. This was an incredible venue, incredible atmosphere. This is something that we're going to treasure for the rest of our lives.

Q. Shelby, can you explain how you felt ahead of the fifth rubber.
SHELBY ROGERS: I got a question (laughter).

They're amazing, I was so happy to be able to get a chance to compete for my country with these girls and do my part.

I tried my butt off. I wouldn't want to share that moment with anybody else. CoCo is amazing. The team is amazing. I love these girls. I will never, ever, ever forget this moment.

Q. CoCo, you got aced on a second serve, but you are the biggest star of the team. How does it feel to be one of the people who inspire people around the world, generations of American players?
COCO VANDEWEGHE: Well, if I get aced on a second serve, it happens. It's tennis. But I think it was a high-grade match out there, playing singles and doubles, both days.

I really pretty much give it up to the Belorussian crowd. They really brought some great atmosphere to the match. I really relished in that moment of having the crowd against me and really enjoying the moment of firing myself up and believing in myself and knowing that my teammates believed in me to get the wins when it mattered most.

Q. CoCo, the second set of the doubles match, 2-5, what happened in this particular moment? What got you to the result?
COCO VANDEWEGHE: I really have to thank Shelby for the spur, the confidence. She was the one that kept me fired up through the whole second set when we were up, down. Didn't really matter. She was bringing the energy for the doubles team.

I really thank her for that because I was just hitting off of her. The only thing I was good at was maybe giving a few ideas here and there. She was really bringing the fire for the team.

Q. CoCo, explain how special the year has been.
COCO VANDEWEGHE: Well, it's not just me out here. I really want to thank my teammates for pushing me along. I mean, from Bethanie, to Lauren Davis, everyone that's here right now behind this table. It was really a team effort. It really shows in Fed Cup.

I might have had wins along the way, but Ali won a lot of matches in Hawaii the first round. I think, to quote Mike Tyson, my back is broken right now. It's the final (laughter).

Q. I saw Pat Cash here because of you. What is it like to train with this champion, and how is it working? Sometimes it's not so easy, relations with the coach and player.
COCO VANDEWEGHE: Well, working with Pat has actually had some good results. I think it's a combination of definitely me I guess listening to what he has to say. If I don't believe in what he has to say, it really doesn't matter what kind of coach you have. You really have to believe what your coach is telling you and really take it to heart.

I think I've done that pretty well, along with a lot of other things that happened through the year. It's day-to-day, it's match-to-match. You really have to have an understanding between coach and player to have a good relationship.

I think it's been a good relationship so far.

Q. (Question regarding Pat and a Polish coach.)
COCO VANDEWEGHE: It's been fine. I think it's been an easy transition from one coach to another. I've had a coach in between. I don't really remember too much from my days with Maciej.

Q. Kathy, I know the victory is only an hour or so old, but what does the future hold for the USA Fed Cup team?
CAPTAIN RINALDI: Well, we're going to enjoy this, for sure. Then we turn around, we play in February.

I think it's great. I mean, look, American tennis, American women's tennis, is thriving and doing well. We have so many great players, so many young junior players coming up the ranks as well, and even younger behind them. It's pretty exciting. It's an exciting time.

We saw the US Open with Sloane taking her first title. We had four American women in the semis, and she played Madison Keys in the finals. Look at Venus, and Serena coming back. Bethanie is going to be healthy again. You just go down the list.

We have so much history, so many great players, I'm just honored to be a part of it at this exciting time. The last nine, ten years that I've been working with the USTA has been just a tremendous honor. I can't tell you what it means to see these girls reaching their goals, watching them have success. It means so much to me.

Q. When coming here, did you expect you would face such resistance from the Belorussian team? Could you compare your opponents, Belarus and Czech Republic with the same scores.
CAPTAIN RINALDI: I knew we were in for a tough match. I've watched your players over the last several years and been following their success. I know how talented they are. They're in the finals. They beat some very good teams to get here. They have great chemistry.

We came in knowing that. We came in not underestimating our opponent, but coming in trying to be prepared. It's a tough time of year, the end of the year. Our players did an amazing job putting their hearts out on the line today.

Each one of these girls did an amazing job. Just can't say enough about the depth. Can't say enough about all the people that have just been treating us so wonderfully since we've been here. It's just been an incredible week.

I think they're a very talented young team, as is Czech Republic. I mean, another team that has a lot of young players, as well. So, you know, we're not only going to face them again in the Fed Cup, but our players are going to face them on the WTA Tour. It's going to be fun to watch.

Q. Speak to the red, white and blue you saw behind your team bench, how that motivated you and your players the last two days.
ALISON RISKE: Yeah, well, obviously I was here just to be a part of the team. I was here to support the girls in any capacity that I could. We tried to be there for the girls as best we could, give them good vibes, look at us and feel positivity coming their way. That's what we try to do. I think they felt it.

It was just such a proud moment to be a part of it. Yeah, it's something I'll never forget.

CAPTAIN RINALDI: We had a cheering squad with us, our colleagues. We had a big team obviously, too, behind us, and also in the stands. They've been so excited to come over for the final. You could see the excitement.

We certainly needed it. It was an incredible crowd. We knew it was going to be coming here. We knew that the crowd was sold out. To have their support meant everything to us. It was amazing to have that here.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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