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September 7, 2019

Bianca Andreescu

New York, NY, USA

B. ANDREESCU/S. Williams

6-3, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What were you feeling when she caught up to 5-All?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I had some doubts because I've witnessed her come back from being 5-0 down, 5-1 down, 5-2 down. I just told myself to stick with my tactics. She started playing much better. I think the crowd really helped her, as well.

Q. Obviously very loud in there. You put your fingers in your ears at one point. What were you trying to block out at that moment? How were you ultimately able to find it within yourself to push through at the end?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Well, I was blocking out the noise, or trying to. I could barely hear myself think really. It was really, really loud. But I guess that's what makes this tournament so special.

I'm sure it's really nice for the Americans to come on that court. I've heard a lot of cheering from other people for me, so I'm really happy with that.

But it definitely wasn't easy, especially when she started coming back in the second set. I mean, it was expected. She's a champion. That's what champions do. She's done that many, many times throughout her career.

But I just tried to stay as composed as I could. It's hard to just block everything out, but I think I did a pretty good job at that.

Q. You've comported yourself so well on the court throughout this whole run. What were your nerves like before the final? Players often talk about trying to treat every match the same, but there's a lot of pomp and circumstance with the final. How did those nerves feel? How important did you feel that first game was when you were able to break her?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I was feeling many, many things before the match, more than any other match. In the finals, playing Serena. I just tried to breathe as much as I could from the moment I woke up until the match. I tried to just do that throughout the whole match, to just keep my nerves in place.

It wasn't easy at all. But I think that's what I've been doing really well throughout this whole year.

Q. And the first game?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: The first game? I was really happy about that (smiling). I think she double-faulted for me to win the game. The game plan right from the start was to make her work for every ball, to get as many returns in the court as possible.

I think she was intimidated a little bit by it.

Q. Where were you during last year's women's final? Did you watch it? What were your thoughts on what happened?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I don't completely remember what happened. I actually didn't watch that final. Yeah, I don't think I watched that final. I actually just watched some highlights this morning so I know what to expect a little bit.

I know Naomi played a really good match. I kind of tried to just get to that level today.

Q. Where were you last year during this time?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I was at home. I was injured. I was sitting on my butt.

Q. What similarities do you see between the way you play and your approach to the game with Serena?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I think there are some similarities. We like to keep the points short with our aggressive game style. We like to use our serve to our advantage. I think we fight really, really hard.

But at the same time I want to make a name for myself. I know I have a different game style than many players on the tour right now. It's been working really, really well. It's been working to my advantage. I just want to keep improving it.

Q. How did you visualize tonight going, your visualization practice and stuff? What did you see in your mind's eye when you sat to think about what tonight might look like for you?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: This wasn't the only time I visualized playing in the finals actually against Serena Williams. It's so crazy, man. I've been -- (tearing up). Sorry.

I've been dreaming of this moment for the longest time. Like I said after I won the Orange Bowl, a couple months after, I really believed that I could be at this stage. Since then, honestly I've been visualizing it almost every single day.

For it to become a reality is just so crazy. I guess these visualizations really, really work (laughter).

THE MODERATOR: Take a moment for a second.

BIANCA ANDREESCU: I'm good, continue (laughter).


BIANCA ANDREESCU: I'm doing doping, so I don't want to get out of here during the press.

Q. When you took the 6-5 lead in the second sitting in your chair, it looked like your eyes were closed. What was going through your mind at that point?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I told myself to put the goddamn ball inside the court and just breathe as much as I could because she was serving, first of all. I wanted to win the first point to show her that I am in it to win it. Did I win that first point? I don't even know.

Q. I think so.

But, yeah, the game plan right from the start of the match was to make her play and to just make her work for every ball. I'm just really happy with how I executed because I think that's what I did the whole entire match.

Q. You've talked about wanting to inspire young people across Canada. Canadians are going crazy over this win. You've made history. What does that mean to you?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I've said this many, many times before. I'm going to say it again. It's been a goal of mine to inspire many people, especially Canadian athletes. I think that this win will hopefully do that, not only this win but just what I've accomplished this past year because so many Canadian athletes have paved the way for me when I was young.

Hopefully I can be that person to them.

Q. You sound very self-assured, you play a confident brand of tennis. Is that something that's always been the case for you? Is it something you had to learn over time? If so, how did you?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: No, I don't think I was ever as composed as I am now, or even a year ago. I would get really down on myself and I would get very negative thoughts going through my mind. I would smash racquets. I'd just yell at myself during matches. Actually not even during matches, even during practice, too.

But I found that that way wasn't working to my advantage at all. So I started seeing -- I'll say I started seeking some advice from other people. Ever since then, I've been trying to have a very positive outlook on everything. I think that's really been helping me, even in tough situations.

Q. At Indian Wells you spoke about how every day you get up and do this meditating. Did you do that today? Do you find it gives you a sense of calm? Is it empowering?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Yeah, I did that this morning. I've been doing that this whole tournament. I put myself in situations where I think can happen in a match basically. I just find ways to deal with that so I'm prepared for anything that comes my way.

I think your biggest weapon is to be as prepared as you can. I really think that just working your mind -- because at this level everyone knows how to play tennis, I think. The thing that separates the best from the rest is just the mindset.

Q. You've dealt with a lot of injuries. What advice would you give to players, juniors and pros, that are dealing with injury and illness?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: It's definitely a process of life. You're never going to have ups all the time. So I think in those moments, you just have to deal with it the best that you can, which is to just keep fighting for your dreams and just stay as persistent and persevere as much as you can.

I know in those moments you feel like you can't. But if you believe that there are good times ahead, then those tough moments are definitely worth it. I think it builds you as a character. I think everyone should go through it because it just makes you stronger.

Q. How famous do you want to be? We can tell how good you want to be. Do you want to be like this all the time? Do you like that life? Are you okay with the idea of being recognized all over the place? Was that all part of the dream?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I guess it is, yeah (laughter). I never really thought about being famous. My goals have been to just win as many Grand Slams as possible, become No. 1 in the world. But the idea of fame never really crossed my mind.

I'm not complaining, though (smiling). It's been a crazy ride this year. I can definitely get used to this feeling.

Q. You and your team made an interesting tactical decision. You were playing against the best server. You chose to receive.
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I always do that. Always do that. I just kept the same routines. I don't know why. Yeah, I don't know. It is what it is.

Q. Throughout the tournament and especially today you showed moxie, guts, courage. When you were starting out in the game, how much did you look at Serena, a young Serena? How much did you look up to her and at her for those attributes, saw that you could be that kind of player?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I'm sure I'm not the only person that's looked up to her. She's an inspiration to many, many people, not only athletes. What she's done off the court, too. She's truly a champion.

Above all, she's very kind-hearted. She came up to me in the locker room, she said some really nice things, which I'll cherish for a really, really long time.

But, yeah, I've really strived to be like her. Who knows? Maybe I can be even better.

Q. (No microphone.)
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Don't ask me that because I have no clue. I've never held that much money in my life. But, yeah, like I said, I guess those visualizations are really working for me. It's just crazy.

I have the biggest smile on my face. It's just that willingness of never giving up for me. Like I've said, I've been through a lot in my short career, not only with injury but with relationships, off-court stuff. I'm just really, really glad that I never gave up on my dreams.

Q. You mentioned the number of Canadian athletes who helped pave the way. Any specific Canadian athletes or Olympic teams, pro sports teams?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Bassett, for sure, was very inspirational. Steve Nash. I can name so many. But it's really nice for people to have that inspiration at a really young age. So when I step on the court, I just really try to show my best character, just to have that good example for other players.

Like I said many times, if I can do it, if Serena can do it, if Roger can do it, if Steve Nash can do it, then anyone can do it.

Q. Being daughter of two Romanians, was it more difficult in Canada? Did they have any problems?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: What was the first part?

Q. Your parents are Romanian.

Q. Was it more difficult to grow up in a country with parents who are immigrants, I guess?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Definitely not.

Q. Toughest moment for you?

Q. In your life.
BIANCA ANDREESCU: No, Canada is such an amazing country. It's so multi-cultural. I had no trouble growing up having Romanian parents whatsoever. That's why I love my country so, so much.

Tennis Canada, as well. I can't thank them enough for everything they've done. I've been with them ever since I was 10 years old. The program they have in place, and had in place, as well, has been doing really well not only for me but for many other Canadian athletes.

Without their help, I definitely wouldn't be here.

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