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September 1, 2018

Dominika Cibulkova

New York, NY, USA


3-6, 6-3, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How good does that one feel for you today?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, it feels pretty good and special. This year I lost to Angelique twice, and even during those matches, I was playing pretty solid. I was playing pretty fine. She just didn't give me any chance.

So now we had to change something, and I think we had the great tactic with my coach, and I was able to do it. It was something that I don't usually do, but I was able to do it and it was working 100%.

Q. What do you think has been the difference now these last two major tournaments having two really strong results?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: You know, it's just true that hard work pays off, because I was really working hard the whole year and the preparation before the year. I felt like I'm not getting the results that I want and I deserve for the way I play.

It's just, you know, I won some more matches and it give me confidence. Tennis is all about mental and confidence. That's what I'm having right now.

Q. You said you changed tactics today. What did you change?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Some things, certain things. You know, I don't know if to talk about it right now.

Q. Specific to matching up against her?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, something. Yeah, I did some things different. It was working. And, of course, I was aggressive going for my forehand, going for my shots. Just overall everything was working.

Q. Madison Keys next. Kind of your round robin group from Singapore.
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, I hope it's not going to be the same result against Keys in Singapore. Never beaten her again, so it's going to be another challenge. Another challenge. I'm going to come up with things to make things different than the matches before.

Yeah, I just want to play the way I play right now, and I'm still believing in myself today. If I'm going to play well, I can beat Madison.

Q. Armstrong was pretty full. Do you think that contributed to your win? You had a lot of support. Do you think that helped you out in the third set?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: I don't know. I like to play on big stages, so yeah, of course, the fans are helping always when you're winning. It gives you special energy.

But today was my first time playing on Armstrong, and it was just so busy. You know, it was really hard to concentrate from the beginning, because the people are just walking around and talking and just eating, I don't know, and going up and down.

So it was really hard. Sometimes you have to play the rally and somebody there is walking. It's not very usual, but, yeah, so this was a little complaint. But overall, the court was nice and everything went well.

Q. There have been a lot of surprising results by the numbers on Armstrong already. You beat Kerber. Wozniacki lost and Halep, Muguruza lost on Armstrong. Do you think this is stuff you're talking about maybe distracted the better players or can affect the match in some way?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, but I think if something like this can affect you, and in the Grand Slam, then you are not focused and not doing something right. I think all the best players, you know, they just know how it goes and what to do during these situations.

So even if I would lose this match today, I would be complaining about people that wouldn't be good, right. I don't know why did they lose.

Q. Just given your season and everything, what does today's win today mean to you?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Means a lot. And as I said, I had to play a bit different than I played against Angelique last two, three times, and I was able to do it. After my quarterfinal run at Wimbledon, now it's the fourth round here at the US Open, and I hope it's not finished.

So, you know, it's just a big boost of confidence. It's like, you know, as I said before, my hard work is paying off. I'm happy to show it on my best tennis on the biggest stage in the world.

Q. What has been toughest for you about playing Madison? What about that matchup is difficult?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, her serve. You know, her serve is very challenging for me, because she's kicking the serve. I had a little difficulties with her serve before. I had the same thing before with Stosur and now last three meetings, I was able to beat her.

I'm sure I can find a way how to get there and how to play a good tennis to beat her, to fight all the way.

Q. You and Angie played so well, and 2016 was a struggle for both of you. Can you look back and find out what went wrong in that season for you?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: I don't know for her. I never talk about it.

Q. No, for you.
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, for me? After winning Singapore, for me it was something unbelievable that, after that season, I was really flat. Even going for preparation for 2017, I was flat and I didn't feel motivated and still, you know, I was just not there, you know. I was struggling the whole year because I just felt the pressure and not even do the right things.

But I learned from my mistakes, and if I would be in the same situation, I know what I would do different and I will change some things for sure.

Q. The shoe change in the second set, did that give you happy feet in a way? What did that do for you?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: What are you saying?

Q. The shoe change.

Q. What did that do for you?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, you know, I sweat a lot, so in some of the matches, I had to change my shoes four times. This match was only once, so I was pretty lucky. Nice conditions. We played in the shade. Shadow? Shade. Okay.

The conditions today on the court were the best so far for me during this US Open.

Q. What do you think of that court?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Except that it's busy, busy, busy, it's beautiful court.

Q. You posted a photo in Eastbourne with Diego Schwartzman. As a shorter player yourself, what do you think about what he's been able to do on the men's side? Shorter players have appreciation for each other?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, I respect him a lot, because for me, it's very challenging to play top of the best, the best tennis against all these tall girls. You know, I know what it takes and that's the women's. On the men's side, I cannot even think about returning Isner or Anderson or somebody like this. He has my respect.

Q. In your last match, you were penalized two points for being late coming back to the court; is that correct?

Q. In your last match, you were penalized two points for being late coming back to the court.

Q. And you were playing on Court 11. Where did you go to change?

Q. Yeah.
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: They took me, like, I don't know where. They said it's cooling room. It took us I don't know how many minutes to get there, because we had to go out from the court and through the people, through the crowd, and it was just behind --

Q. 17?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: I don't really know. But it took a long time, and then it took a long time to go back, because there were so many people in the crowd and I had to wait until the people just give us a way and that's why I got those two points.

Q. I was told by the USTA they set up a cooling room in Court 11?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, probably was in Court 11. I think it was behind Court 11, but it's not like you get there straight from your bench. You have to go out and around the court and it's full of people. It's packed.

So they should try to do it by themself and they will see it takes, like, three or four minutes to get there, at least.

Q. A lot of players are very superstitious. Are you? If so, what sorts of things do you do or try to avoid on the court or before a match?
DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA: Yeah, I used to be very, very superstitious, but I'm trying to be as little as I can right now, because sometimes it can be too much.

The thing I do all the time, I just smell the new balls when I get them. It's something what I do since I was little. That's the only thing I do on the court right now.

I used to put my racquets when I was changing the racquet the same way. Now I just don't put them in the bag anymore. I'm trying to get rid of these things.

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