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October 25, 2018

Elina Svitolina

Kallang, Singapore

E. SVITOLINA/C. Wozniacki

5-7, 7-5, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How much did you know in terms of the scenarios, the qualification scenarios, and what you needed to do today going into the match? And if you did know what you needed to do, how did that change how that match felt?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, I knew that I had to win one set. I mean, there was lots of pressure, and I think for her, as well. We are both was under pressure.

Here, you know, this round robin is not easy, no easy matches, no easy scenarios. So I had to fight for every ball, and I think today I was really pushed mentally to go through really, really tough moments, because, you know, to play against Caroline, you always have to put one extra ball over the net. She always chase every ball. You know, that's why, for me, was like one of the toughest probably battles mentally.

Q. Can you walk us through those five set points or just that last game in the second set? Emotionally, mentally, how did you get through that?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Of course, you know, I was 40-15 up, played some great points. Then she was playing unbelievable on the set points. I think I did only one error, which was really bad. I was disappointed.

But the rest, you know, she was playing like a champion, you know. I was expecting this because all the matches before, she always, when she was down, she was, you know, going for it.

That's why, when I finally got my fifth set point, I said to myself, I'm going to be tough as a nail and not going to give anything.

Q. This year almost every match goes to third set, and it's really close match and over two hours. Do you think there is any specific reason about that? It's just you guys are just competitive or because of surface? How do you think?
ELINA SVITOLINA: I think in every Finals Championships, there are always tough matches. I remember even, you know, last year there have been lots of three-setters. You know, here, the best eight players, so everyone is fighting, giving their best. Is last tournament of the season, as well.

When you're down, you're just saying to yourself, Okay, I'm going to really push myself because this might be the last match. So, you know, like today, you know, when I was break down in the second set, I said to myself, you know, Let's get back on track because you can rest at home, you know (smiling).

Q. After the adrenaline of this, obviously you've got to reset. You don't know who you're playing yet in the next round. Have any of the results in the other group surprised you this time around?
ELINA SVITOLINA: I didn't really follow so much on other group, because I was just trying to focus on my matches. Not really. I mean, I don't even know -- I just knew that, like, all eight players can qualify for semifinal, but I didn't really follow.

Q. So going into the semifinals, are you going to not sort of watch what happens tomorrow?
ELINA SVITOLINA: No, of course. Of course we're going to -- my coach is going to watch and I'm going to watch few matches now.

But, you know, before I was not sure that I could qualify, so why would I watch? I had to focus on my next challenge, my next match.

Q. Regarding how the last half of the season went for you, what does that mean to get to the semifinals and with that level of tennis? You struggled quite a bit and you're finding your way again?
ELINA SVITOLINA: For me, going into this tournament was very important mentally to bounce back, and, you know, I had really, really tough second part of the season. You know, I was actually -- I was actually surprised, because I was very positive and I just keep fighting.

You know, I stopped with my coach, with Thierry, and it was not easy. With all the things going, you know, on social media, you know, with the opinions about my physique, it wasn't easy.

So this really shows, and I think I'm getting mentally tough. That's what I have been working on really hard. Yeah, definitely Andy helps me a lot, and it's something that really I appreciate it.

Q. So what do you think got you through all that? What worked for you to mentally overcome that? And I guess what kind of lessons have you learned from the past six months?
ELINA SVITOLINA: By knowing that I have to look only on my path and to don't -- you know, there is a thousand opinions, million opinions. You know, I just have to do my job and go on court. I'm trying to win every point. I'm not giving any free points. Just want to continue that way.

It definitely made me stronger in, you know, those tough moments. And now I'm just enjoying that, you know, this success. You know, the job is not done yet, but, you know, these three matches that I had, they have been really tough. Today I saw, you know, this challenge. I'm really, really happy the way I could handle it.

Q. Before the tournament we had talked a little bit about kind of your coaching situation. You said that going into the offseason you were thinking about some options or had some options. It seems, though, you work really well with Andy, and he's been there for the last couple of years. Just curious, have there been discussions at all where he would just kind of remain as your sole coach?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, of course. He's gonna stay. He's a traveling coach. For me, the idea to have someone not on a full-time, as well, so I'm going to definitely have, I think, definitely try to find someone who can give opinion on my game, because for me, that's what I'm looking for.

I always like, you know, to hear from someone experienced. You know, it's not like it's gonna change everything, but, you know, the small things, small details make a big difference. You know, I have to learn, I like to learn something new from each person, because every person has something different and different look on the situation. So for me it's this what matters.

Q. You talk about social media. You're one of the players who does really try to interact with their fans on social media, but then there is that drawback finding comments that aren't so positive. How difficult is it to balance trying to be there for the fans and also block out the other voices? Do you find it's better to not spend so much time on social media during tournaments?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Well, during tournament I'm not spending so much time. You know, I have a team who is working on it, and because, you know, with all the sponsorships and deals, everything, it's very tough for a tennis player to control it. So I have a social media team taking care of it.

It was not really about this and not really reading so much of the, you know, of the comments and everything, but, you know, it's very tough to escape because you, in the end, you're always gonna hear. And people around you, it's not only voice about the social media that I had, like, few opinions on the situation.

Q. I don't know if you spoke about this before the tournament. I wasn't here. The trial with Nick, I guess, was very brief. I'm just wondering, was it the timing or what were the reasons behind just not that you guys didn't continue?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, it was not that I didn't like our work. It was just a trial. For me, I heard what he wanted me to improve and everything and just in that time, you know, probably was a little bit too much, because I was a bit struggling here and there.

You know, it was just, yeah, maybe wrong timing. It's very tough to say now. It was tough, because I'm working with Andy for a long time, and we know, you know, how which direction we have to move and what we have to improve. He knows me the best.

So for me it was just, yeah, maybe timing, but it's tough to say in one word.

Q. Last year you sort of left here sort of feeling you hadn't really shown what you can do. I mean, you were disappointed with that. When you qualified this time, were you more determined to come back and really prove how well you could play?
ELINA SVITOLINA: Yeah, I think it's the part of being mentally tough. You know, as I said, you know, the period of six months I think after my bad performance at Roland Garros and then continued few tournaments that I didn't play my best tennis I think made me stronger. You know, I just decided what I have to do on court, off court, and that's more clear now.

It's tough to, you know, to spot few things, but I have been working with Andy, and it's like one more person that helps me, I had the conversation. So I'm not going to say who's that. Keep it to a mysterious man (smiling) who, you know, made it clear what I have to do, and it's a little bit opened my mind. So, you know, I'm really thankful for that man (smiling).

Q. Is he a friend or psychologist or coach?
ELINA SVITOLINA: I don't know (smiling).

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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