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June 6, 2018

Garbine Muguruza

Paris, France

G. MUGURUZA/M. Sharapova

6-2, 6-1

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English.

Q. You're a totally different player than a couple years ago against Maria. You're also a Grand Slam winner yourself and you have a totally different game than a couple years ago.
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, last time we played was a very long time ago, and a lot of things happened in between that.

So I felt like I was a more developed player. And, you know, very motivated out there to -- it's a Grand Slam quarterfinals. So, yeah, in general, everything.

Q. You have been on court a combined hour and a half in your last two matches. Is there any such thing as playing too little at this point in a tournament? Having too few steps on the court?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, I didn't think about it. Today I played a full match. The other day was kind of a weird day.

But today I played full match. I'm happy I'm playing tomorrow so I keep, you know, playing, in a row. If I don't play, I'm training hard. So I feel that I'm playing a lot.

Q. You said you're a more developed player. What are you particularly proud of in today's performance in terms of looking back four years ago?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: I mean, four years ago, my experience was difference. I think I improve also as a tennis player. And, yeah, things here and there.

I think I did a good performance today, very serious, solid match. Yeah, I'm happy with that.

Q. How important is being aggressive to your play, and particularly in this match today?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Being aggressive is, I think you know it's part of my game. And when you're facing somebody that also has an aggressive style of game, I think it's about who takes the command, who takes the first opportunity.

So I think it was a little bit of that today.

Q. During the match, were you at any point surprised that the scoreline was as clear as it was? There were some breaking games that went for a while and made a huge difference, but were you surprised by the scoreline at the end and also the pace? Because it was 70 minutes at the end.
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: No, I wasn't thinking really about it. I was focusing on winning every point, every game, and the score doesn't really matter.

Yeah, that didn't cross really my mind.

Q. When you're in a Grand Slam and you're playing well and very focused, do you feel like you have to sort of hold your breath the whole two weeks and just stay that dialed in, or do you give yourself chances to relax at all in these two weeks? How do you sort of keep your intensity in the right place?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, maybe before I was holding more my breath. Now I just find moments to enjoy, moments to be serious, moments to train. You know, I kind of learned with experience, you know, as always, how to manage these long tournaments better.

I think, yeah, I'm doing it more and more.

Q. When you win Grand Slams, does that add something to your game or your mentality, or does it feel just the same?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: I mean, it adds a lot of confidence. I think that's the most important. That's it. I mean, it's great to feel out there to hold the trophy, to have matches at this level.

You know, it's very hard to have the experience of playing a lot of matches, difficult rounds, difficult opponents. So it's all adding to your backpack, I guess.

Q. You have Halep next, a very different opponent. Just your thoughts on that matchup.
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Very good match. I think she's right now probably the best player. Well, she's No. 1. So I'm excited to play a good semifinals, and it's good that it's tomorrow, so, yeah.

Q. When you're out on court, does it feel -- and the whole two weeks, does it feel like fun getting to be out there to compete, or does it feel like business, first and foremost?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: No. "Business" is an ugly word.

You know, I think I go out there. I love playing tennis. You're probably not smiling when you're playing tennis, but I love playing on Chatrier. It's one of my favorite courts. The crowd, the big stage.

So deep inside it's a great moment, even though you're not, you know, smiling out there.

Q. How do you take the pressure for the match for tomorrow? Because tomorrow who is winning the match, the semifinal, is going to be the new No. 1 after Roland Garros.
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Oh? I mean, it's not that important, because it's constantly this thing going on, you know, I don't know, since last year. So I give less importance to that. Like, before, I gave it a lot of importance before, so that's why, you know, you're fighting every week, and I got there.

And now it's just -- it's good to be able to play all the time for that, but every week there is a new chance, there is a new thing. So that's it.

Q. When you have these good runs at slams, do you notice that in the days leading up to the tournament, like, two years ago here or Wimbledon, for example, past two years, do you notice that, or do you just feel that it might be a good tournament for you as the tournament progresses?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Normally you just start your first round. You know, in the first week, you try to go through and sometimes you feel better with every match you play, sometimes no. So it's really depending of the tournament, the circumstances.

But, in general, you keep -- every win counts a lot, so it gives you this little strength and this little confidence.

Q. You have won two Grand Slams before. One with Sam with you here and the other one at Wimbledon with Sam away, but with Conchita there with you on site. How different are their energies in terms of the tone they try to set for your team?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: You mean the difference between both of them?

Q. Their approach to playing a Grand Slam.
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: I feel Conchita might be a little bit more easy-going. She understands sometimes more the player view. I think Sam is more, you know, straight and a lot of energy out there.

I mean, they both are similar with me, because I think, you know, they see similar things, and they agree on how to coach me and stuff like that.

But I think they have, you know, different personalities.

Q. We can see on the court that you are moving great. You know how to slice on clay. But also you change immediately to grass. Your game, why does it suit all surfaces?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, clay I feel like I played all my life, so I just -- I feel like I don't have to do anything special. You know, I feel comfortable on the surface.

In grass, it was a learning process because I like to play aggressive. I don't fear the net. I like to, you know, serving. I like to go to hit some volleys and stuff. I just feel like grass helps me.

So I found my way to learn how to play there.

THE MODERATOR: Questions in Spanish.

Q. Were you expecting this difference, this superiority that you managed to get today?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, I knew it was going to be an intense match, because I hadn't played her for a long time. I knew she was a difficult player.

I wasn't thinking so much about the result, but I just was thinking about not dropping my level, not giving her a single point, and I guess that helped my performance.

Q. The other day I asked you if you could play tennis better, and you answered no. Today you showed that it was possible. You won against Sharapova, 6-2, 6-1.
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, I don't think it's a question of being at your top level. You can always improve things. Obviously it was a quarterfinal against a very good opponent, and that's what I take away.

Q. Out of the players in the semifinals, three are Grand Slam champions. What do you think?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, what a draw. That's what I think.

But when you play and you win against an old-time player with a lot of experience, it gives you a lot of trust. And these matches are the way you need to travel to get to the end of the tournament.

Q. At what point does one think about the title when you win such matches and you're focused?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, I guess you don't think about the title before you get to the finals. I don't think it's necessary or healthy when you still have to cover quite a lot of ground, like playing against a very top player tomorrow who is the top at present, and then we'll see what happens.

Q. So you saw that you were a player for great events and great courts. Tomorrow you're playing the world No. 1. How are you facing this match? And if you maintain the level, do you think you could be a favorite playing the Romanian?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: No, I don't feel I'm favorite for this match, because she's played better than I have this year. She loves clay. She loves Roland Garros. She's shown it.

It's a great match. It's a great semifinals. I'm motivated, and that's it. That's all.

Q. You commented in English the changes from the last match against Sharapova two years ago here. What is the difference between the Garbiñe then and Garbiñe today?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, the last time I played in Roland Garros, it was the first time I was in the quarterfinals. I don't know. The situation was different. I didn't have the same experience in this major tournament, being on the center court.

I have also learned now more about her game. I have had time to observe her. It's a change that comes from having more years of experience and improving my tennis.

Q. How important is your aggressivity, especially for the second serve against Sharapova?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, I had to seize all the opportunities to bother her or, let's say -- not bother her, but to be aggressive. And I tried to fight, and that's what I tried to do.

Q. You're talking about aggressivity, but today you made very few unforced errors. Are you training a lot to be more solid?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: When you're aggressive, you always have to balance between the risk, and you're always close to the line and being on the line or one centimeter outside, offline.

So of course you have these statistics, but, yes, what I do is try to work to make less faults. But when you have a lot of tactics, obviously you make mistakes, but...

Q. Now, against Halep, you have the semifinals against the No. 1. Do you think about it?
GARBIÑE MUGURUZA: Well, I heard about it just now that the one who wins will be No. 1. But I don't give it too much attention. Every week a list comes out.

In the past few years, I used to take this into account, and I shouldn't have taken it so much to heart. So now I don't have it in mind constantly.

If I make it all, it's very well. Otherwise, there will be more opportunities.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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