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February 9, 2019

Captain Rinaldi

Maidson Keys

Asheville, North Carolina

M. KEYS/K. Birrell

6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. The first couple games, how were you able to fight the momentum on their side and to avoid giving her hope as an underdog? You were up...
MADISON KEYS: To be totally honest with you, I don't remember any of that. I don't remember anything about the first two games.

My biggest focus was getting out there and getting a good start, obviously wanting to get a point for USA. After Sonia came back and fought her absolutely hardest, I knew even though we didn't get the win, we definitely had the crowd obviously. Just wanted to keep it going, do everyone on the USA team proud.

Q. You got a good look at Ash Barty. What do you expect tomorrow with the first match of the day?
MADISON KEYS: Ashleigh is going to be incredibly tough. She obviously had a really good start to her season already. She had a really good year last year. She's playing some of the best tennis. She's going to compete on top of all of that.

I'm going to go back and listen to Kathy when she tells me what to do, then go out and do my best to do it tomorrow.

Q. Talk us through what happened when you were serving for the match at 5-1.
MADISON KEYS: I lost the game. I mean, I didn't play great. I kind of lost my focus. I lost the game quickly. But it happens. I bounced back right away, got the break and the win.

Q. Kathy, obviously after you lost the first point, this is the best that you could hope for. Talk a little bit about being 1-1 going into tomorrow.
CAPTAIN RINALDI: Sure. I'm incredibly proud of both girls. Sonia came out and tried her hardest. She's gained so many experience from playing Fed Cup. She almost came back in the second set. Then Maddie came out and played a terrific match, played Madison Keys tennis. So we're going in 1-1.

We'll take it one match at a time. That's what we've been doing since I've been captain. That's what we're going to continue to do. We know we have tough opponents. We have to come out tomorrow and compete hard and play well.

Q. Do you think with Sonia it was a matter of experience? Only her second Fed Cup match. She's 20, hasn't played that much.
CAPTAIN RINALDI: Yeah, I think so. I mean, I'm going to give a lot of credit to Ashleigh Barty today. She played very well. She served extremely well today.

But I think Sonia came out and she was a little nervous. Once she kind of worked through that, I thought she played extremely well and gave herself every bit of a chance to get back into that match and win it.

To play an away tie is completely different to playing a home tie. I'm just happy for her that she's gaining all this experience.

Q. What does it mean to have Billie Jean King here?
MADISON KEYS: I've known Billie since I was I think 14. I played on her team for World TeamTennis. Having Billie sitting behind me during matches isn't anything new, but it's always just as special.

She has been someone who has been amazing for me, throughout my entire career has always been supportive. If I needed advice, I could always go to her. Having someone like Billie here especially just means a lot.

CAPTAIN RINALDI: Same for me. I mean, Billie is just an amazing person. She's done so much for our sport obviously, for women in general. She's been a great mentor. I've always been able to call Billie whenever I've needed advice or have a question or need help or anything.

To have her here, I know she was trying to get to one of the ties the last couple years, to have her here means a lot to me and the entire team. So really happy that she's here.

Q. People like to talk about momentum within a match, within a tie. From your perspective, how much do you think momentum carries over from match to match or day to day?
CAPTAIN RINALDI: Well, we're going to go with it. In this case, we're going with it. We won the last match today. We're going to come out here and hopefully take that momentum into tomorrow.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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