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July 7, 2018

Simona Halep

Wimbledon, London, England


3-6, 6-4, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What did you know about her game going in? How did you make the adjustments?
SIMONA HALEP: I know she's mixing the rhythm, she's playing everything. It was really hard on grass court to do better. Still I had 5-2 in the third set. I had match point. Just didn't go my way today.

She deserved to win. She had, like, more things to do on court today. She was mixing the game. She deserved to win.

Q. Rafa was in here and I asked him about whether it was other players raising their level because it's Wimbledon. He said it's more about the surface. What is it specifically about the surface that is hard to get around?
SIMONA HALEP: Well, the ball is not bouncing two times in a row the same. It's really tough to stay low, to play every ball, to expect actually nothing because you never know where the ball is bouncing and where is coming. It's always a big challenge to play on grass court.

I cannot play my best tennis here, but I hope to improve more for the next years, to have a better result in the future.

Q. Why can't you play your best tennis here?
SIMONA HALEP: Because I have just to be very low. I have to stay closer to the court because the ball is coming fast. The grass is very different. It's very special.

Q. You talk about the unpredictability of bounces. Is that tougher when you play an unpredictable opponent, which multiplies the difficulty?
SIMONA HALEP: Exactly, yeah. The difficulty was bigger today because of her game. She played really well. She stayed there for every point. All the credit to her.

Actually it was okay as a game. I just believe that I was not very positive on court. The match was very unprofessional for me. But I am too tired. I was too tired. I have pain everywhere.

I will not find the excuses about this match, she deserved to win, but still I'm sad about myself today.

Q. Tired from Paris?
SIMONA HALEP: Everything. I had a great year. Six months have been great. So I'm tired with everything.

Q. Even if the ball doesn't bounce twice in the same way, that is for everyone.

Q. How come nine of the top 10 players were...

Q. Thanks for helping. One of them, Pliskova, was close to be out, too. It's a bit strange, don't you think?
SIMONA HALEP: Yeah, I don't know what to say about that. For sure is not because of the court. I think because of everything. I can talk about myself. I'm coming after so many wins on clay court, so it was tough to really stay focused and to really adjust myself to the court.

But today she was mixing much better than me. She did better. I mean, I will not make a drama, but I'm sad that I lost this match the way I lost it.

Q. You described your own play as unprofessional. That sounds really harsh on yourself. What do you mean?
SIMONA HALEP: Definitely I gave everything I had on the game side. I was fighting till the end for every ball. I just was too negative to myself, talking too much. I think because I was tired, because I'm tired, I couldn't stay focused for every ball.

I was leading the match, I was up, and I couldn't finish it. I'm not hard. I'm just realistic and honest with myself. I accept that it was an unprofessional attitude from me today.

Q. Given the unpredictability of the draw now...
SIMONA HALEP: Please. Now I'm off. I'm going to holiday.

Q. My question is, in your opinion, who has the ability to make a strong run next week?
SIMONA HALEP: I don't have the power to think about that. The tournament is open. In my opinion, anyone can win it now in this moment.

Q. It doesn't seem like it's really opening up for Serena, who has done so well here in the past, from a player perspective.
SIMONA HALEP: I feel that she has a chance to win it, definitely. But also I see many other players that they have the chance to win it. Depends of the day. Depends of the power, the feelings. Everyone can do it.

Q. You say you are very tired. Do you see yourself going to the US Open?
SIMONA HALEP: Oh, yes. That's long time. I need just one week, maybe two weeks maximum.

Q. What is your schedule, apart from a long rest? What will be your schedule in the States?
SIMONA HALEP: Normally in this moment the tournaments that I always played, U.S. tournaments for sure. Just two or three weeks now because I lost in the first week, I will have rest, then normal schedule. Nothing changes.

Q. The feeling of tiredness, it's pretty common among first-time Grand Slam champions. This decade, only one time has the champion for a first time even made quarterfinals at the next Grand Slam. Is this sort of tiredness you feel from this big achievement different than you expected or different than you ever had before?
SIMONA HALEP: Maybe, because I had Grand Slam and I had tough matches during Paris. I am tired also mentally. But I think I played well these six months. I played final in Melbourne. Even if it's long time ago, like five months ago, still all the pressure, all the tension is in my body.

I just take it like I was tired, I had some pain everywhere in my body. I'm not blaming that I couldn't focus because I won a Grand Slam. It's the most important thing that happened in my career. I take it positive. But this was my power for this tournament, so now I'm done.

Q. Not very many players would come in here and assess things as openly as you just did. What do you think that indicates about your maturity and where you are at this time?
SIMONA HALEP: This many years that I have worked on the professional way and also personal way I think made the things together, and make me more relaxed to come here and to talk about them.

They are normal things. I think all the people are feeling this. I don't want to hide anything. I just want to say what I feel, and I always did. So in this moment, I'm just trying to forget this tournament, to forget this match because it's a tough one.

But still the future looks good. The fact that I am a Roland Garros champion makes it very, very nice. So I will enjoy my holiday, for sure.

Q. When you say two weeks' rest, you mean no tennis?
SIMONA HALEP: Anything but tennis. Everything you have in your mind but without tennis.

Q. Speaking of the holiday, what does a Halep holiday look like? What do you plan on doing?
SIMONA HALEP: Chilling, resting, doing nothing. Just enjoying life. I gave everything I had to tennis this period. Now I want just to spoil myself, to be a normal girl, and enjoying life. That's everything now.

Q. You spoke about being tired, mentally tired. Do you think that held you back from winning the match point?
SIMONA HALEP: I think mentally I was tired. Also physically I feel tired. My muscles are gone. But mentally I was tired. I couldn't stay focused, you know, to handle the pressure, the tension of the match. That's it.

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