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May 18, 2000

Venus Williams


Q. Did you have some problem with your wrist?

VENUS WILLIAMS: No, no. I felt fine. No problems.

Q. Venus, were you surprised by the way she played tonight?

VENUS WILLIAMS: She played quite well. No, not really because usually she plays pretty solid tennis and I expected her to play quite well. But she played too good today. That's all I could say.

Q. Did you watch her play before?

VENUS WILLIAMS: No, I had not. I've seen her, of course. I'm a tennis player.

Q. And what was the problem with your game, if there was one?

VENUS WILLIAMS: You know, I wasn't getting a rhythm. Things were clear in my mind how I wanted to play, but I wasn't playing that way. So it was a little bit frustrating because I know how to play but I wasn't doing that, and she played quite well. I didn't get into the match. I wasn't serving the way I can. But I'm going to practice the rest of this week, I'm going to practice next week and be ready for the French Open.

Q. Would you compare the feeling you have now with the one you had in Hamburg, the fact that you don't manage to do what you want to do?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah. Yeah, it's better than Hamburg. I'm feeling better than Hamburg. But, you know, it's like my mind is there but my body isn't there yet; I'm still catching up. I know what I want to do. I watched a lot of tennis when I was off. I'm thinking it, but it's not always coming, and so that's tough. I'm trying.

Q. I mean, you didn't seem really angry. I'm glad you're smiling.


Q. After you lost, you should be a little bit

more --

VENUS WILLIAMS: Well, you know, there's no need to come in here crying and upset and bitter. I can do that after the press conference.

Q. Where are you going to prepare for the French Open?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I'm going to stay here a few more days then head to France. That's the plan.

Q. And what are your expectations for the tournament?

VENUS WILLIAMS: For the French?

Q. Yes.

VENUS WILLIAMS: I expect to do a lot better than what I did here. You know, I go in to each match expecting to play well, expecting to win, expecting just to start off from where I dropped off in November, but that, you know, just takes some time and I'm just trying to figure it out. It's tough to say. You know, unless you've been where I am before, it's tough to say how it feels.

Q. When you started to play at Hamburg, it was a comeback. Did you imagine that it would be maybe so difficult to get back?

VENUS WILLIAMS: No, not at all.

Q. No?

VENUS WILLIAMS: No. I really just thought I was going to come back and start playing tennis. I am playing tennis, but not the kind of tennis I want to play. So everyone keeps saying it takes time. For me, I really don't understand that. For me, it just seems like I should be playing perfect.

Q. Can you speak about the frustration, anger?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I came back a different player at this point. Because of my past, I'm going to be more calm and more readily able to accept mistakes. But right now, I can't accept it. I don't want to deal with mistakes and losses and that's unnecessary for me now. I feel different from before.

Q. Is there an urgency, what makes it feel different? After the match, you were being consoled. What were you saying, what were you feeling at that point?

VENUS WILLIAMS: I was just talking to my mom. You know?

Q. She have any wisdom you'd want to share with us?


End of FastScripts….

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