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May 10, 2019

Kiki Bertens

Madrid, Spain

K. BERTENS/S. Stephens

6-2, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English.

Q. You were in tears after the win. Just how much did that mean to you? I guess, why did this win so much?
KIKI BERTENS: Yeah, I think it meant a lot to me today. I think it was a tough day today. I think we both didn't play well. I didn't feel so well. The body was a little bit tired. I think yesterday was a really long night. So, I only went to sleep, like, really late. The body had to recover a little bit from that so I'm happy to get through here today and really happy to be in another final in Madrid.

Q. It seemed like that the body was hurting a bit today. Talk about your serve in particular. You were only broken once today. You got that good triple breakpoint saved. Yesterday, you were only broken once by Petra. Talk about that shot just in general, in terms of how much it helps you and today, even whether you thought you had it, or didn't, and had to fight through it?
KIKI BERTENS: Yes, I think my served help me a lot already this year. I think it's improved a lot. I'm able to save a lot of breakpoints, like you said yesterday only broken once out of seven times, I think. Today, again, I think I saved a lot of breakpoints, also the set points with my serve so of course that helps a lot with the confidence.

Even like, I didn't feel, like, yesterday I think was one of the first matches this year that I didn't hit only one ace but still I only got broken once, so I think the percentages was just good.

And also today, even like still when I don't feel great, still the serve is helping me.

Q. On a day like today, when neither of you played your best tennis, what is the toughest thing about playing against Sloane?
KIKI BERTENS: You never know what you get. Like, maybe it seems, like, she doesn't have a lot of energy, but still she's fast. Still she can hit a lot of balls back and still hit unbelievable shots. So you always have to be ready for that turnaround. And I think it was good today that I broke her straight back when she broke me and that I was still able to fight for the second set.

Q. Second consecutive final here. It seems that Madrid gives you luck?
KIKI BERTENS: Yes (laughing). I would say so (smiling). I love it here. I love the circumstances. I love the clay. I love the altitude. So, I think it's helping me a lot for my game and so, three years ago, I wasn't quite, as last year, in finals, and now again, so I'm really happy with the way I play here.

Q. When you know that maybe the energy is not there, or the gas tank is not full, how much of, I guess, stress or anxiety do you take into the match today knowing you are going against a player who could run all day if she needs to? And knowing, I guess, does that change your game plan at all in terms of what you try to do today?
KIKI BERTENS: I think it didn't really change. I already felt in the warmup that maybe the energy was not 100 percent there, but I still had some time before the match so I had as much food in as possible, had some rest, and just had a really good warmup again to try to just put all the energy in there today and so it was just, like, still the same game plan, like that's where you can play long rallies, where you have to and fight for every point.

I'm just happy that I was able to do that by the end of this second set. Then I think I played the best tennis.

Q. So, Simona in the final. I don't think there are other players who love clay as much as both of you do. How much of a challenge will that be? What is the toughest thing about playing Simona?
KIKI BERTENS: Yeah, it is going to be a really tough battle, I would say. We have had great battles in the past. She loves clay. She loves to play here as well. She won it already twice (smiling). I love it also here. So I think it is just going to be a great battle and yeah, I'm looking forward to it.

Q. What do you do between now and the final in terms of -- I guess the primary focus right now is probably recovery?
KIKI BERTENS: Yeah, but I know for sure that I will feel better again tomorrow (smiling). I just had some food, some stretching, and all that kind of stuff. I just go to the hotel now and all that kind of stuff. I just go to the hotel now and have a good night of sleep and then just put all the energy in there for tomorrow.

It is just one more match. It is a final. I really want this title. So I just go for it.

Q. You keep on winning and getting big results and the more results you get, the more attention you get. Do you like attention?
KIKI BERTENS: (Smiling) To be honest, not really (laughing). No.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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