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July 4, 2019

Serena Williams

Wimbledon, London, England


2-6, 6-2, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How did you feel your game came together?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It was definitely coming together as the match went on. I'm just low on matches basically. I could feel it.

But I'm getting there. Just have to, like I said, take every match as five matches, really learn from every single point.

Q. Did you know the Duchess of Sussex was in the crowd watching your game? How do you feel about the fact?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yes, I knew she was there. It's always exciting when she comes out to watch and support the tennis. So I was happy.

Q. Has Meghan asked you to be godmother on Saturday and are you going?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, I'm working on Saturday (smiling).

Yeah, so she understands work.

Q. How much are you looking forward to tomorrow's mixed doubles with Andy?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I'm looking forward to it. I mean, it will help me out, I think. Usually when I play doubles, it really helps out my singles game. I really need it. I'm glad that you guys suggested it (smiling).

Yeah, I'm really looking forward to it.

Q. Throughout your career so much attention has been given to your competitive fire. What about the role of the love in your heart for the sport?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I absolutely would not be here if I didn't love what I do. I work really hard at what I do every day.

So, yeah, it's hard to do something for this long if you don't have a true love for it.

Q. Has it waned or been consistent?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think it's been consistent. I think in the past few years it gets to be a lot more, which is really intense.

Q. It's been an incredible week for Coco. She's only 15, can only play so many tournaments a year. What is your opinion about the age eligibility? Would you like to see any changes made to it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I can't really comment on that because I can't really experience that. I do know when I was younger, I was limited to tournaments. I also was able to go to school and be able to do things that I'll never get back.

I don't know. I don't know what to say about it.

Q. What made you finally make up your mind about playing with Andy? It seemed, from my perspective, a media-created idea that got planted in your heads, or had you talked about it previously?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, we talked about it a little bit before. It made sense for me because I really could use some matches at this point. It made sense for him. We both want to do well. We both love Wimbledon.

Yeah, so it was definitely something that we thought we could do.

Q. You're on as a TBA in the schedule tomorrow. I don't know if you've had that before.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I've had it in doubles. That means I'm going to play late.

Never fun, but hopefully the matches will go fast tomorrow. We'll see.

Q. We had Roger Federer in earlier speaking about his experiences playing tennis with Prince George. Do you hope one day you might be giving a few tips to Archie?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I'm actually working on Olympia's game. Maybe she can give tips to him. She'll be his older sister, like. I don't know.

We like to do a lot of sports with Olympia. Actually she likes soccer more, so we'll see.

Q. Given how Naomi Osaka has been getting on, do you think young players are getting put under too much pressure, particularly with regard to sponsorship deals?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think so. I think everyone is really able to benefit from the sponsorship deals. So I think it's a good thing.

Q. Generally, do you think young people are getting a bit too much pressure as they start coming up?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't know. I just don't even fit in that category any more, so... I'm kind of the vintage generation that's turning to dust (smiling). I'm trying to figure out why do I still have pressure, you know.

Q. Do you feel like when a woman is young, 15, getting a lot of attention, media, all that stuff, do you feel that's stronger than it was when you were that age?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I was not a good player at 15, so...

Q. 17 maybe.

I don't know because when I started playing, Hingis was No. 1 at 16, she had won Grand Slams. Everyone was winning as a teenager. Capriati had won things. She was like 14. I won a Grand Slam, I was 17. It was a ton of teenagers doing things, so it was a lot of pressure. You were almost expected to win.

If Martina was No. 1 at 16, then we were underachieving at 17. It was definitely a ton of pressure for us. It switched somewhere in between where people started winning a little bit later.

I don't know. Maybe this is a trend back where the players are going to be teenagers and winning again.

Q. The last game, your opponent did not put a ball in play. When you're on like that, you're working your way back, what does that feel like and how do you remember or recall that so you can do that more consistently through a match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I just have to remember that I'm best at closing matches, I'm good at it. I just have to keep the mind frame of where am I, what do I do mentally to close matches. I have to kind of just shut my eyes and get there.

Like I keep saying, it's just experience and match play. In the past two years I haven't played a lot of matches. I'm just trying to kind of get that back.

Q. Patrick said to me he thought you playing with Andy could only be beneficial, help improve your game. Do you back that sentiment? Can Andy help raise your game in terms of your singles and doubles here?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think Andy is a great player, like I said. I think he is mentally one of the toughest players out there. I don't even know what goes on in his mind. I know what goes on in mine, my mind.

It's always interesting to hear what other champions think, how you can play that to your game -- apply it to your game. It's only a win-win situation for me. Hopefully it will be for him, as well.

I would definitely like to add some positivity to him, too. Yeah, I think we're both in a good situation.

Q. Sam Groth, former Australian player, has written an article about your reaction to Ash Barty being made No. 1. He said, in his words, it was an absolute disgrace. What are your thoughts on that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't even know what he's talking about, so... I'm happy she's No. 1. I don't know anyone that isn't. She's such a sweet person. I don't know. I think she's just the one person in the locker room that everyone roots for, including me, so...

Q. You've probably seen Andy's matches here, all the British support he gets. You've played against Brits here, Heather Watson. What do you think it will be like to have that British fan base on your side for more patriotic reasons?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Actually I'm curious, too. I'm going to be so happy when I go out there it's going to be really cool. That's the real reason I wanted to play with Andy (smiling).

Q. Are you and Andy planning to get on the practice court together at some point before your match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, I don't know. We'll see. I know he's playing now, so... We'll see after his match today, see what happens.

Q. Maybe a silly question. You didn't get a Royal nudge to suggest you play with Andy at all, a bit of extra backing?

Q. A Royal nudge from the Royal family.
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, not quite.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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