home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


September 22, 2019

Aryna Sabalenka

Wuhan, Hubei, China

A. SABALENKA/A. Sasnovich

6-1, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How good was it to start your title defense that way?
ARYNA SABALENKA: Of course, I'm happy to be back here. It's special tournament for me. It's nice to play here. Especially with this win today it feels really happy because it's always tough to start tournament, doesn't matter if you are defending champion or just start the tournament.

Anyway, I'm happy.

Q. Earlier this month, on Chinese social media you were performing Chinese martial arts. Looked like a real kung fu master. Any experience this year in Shaolin temple?
ARYNA SABALENKA: It's very nice experience. Enjoy every minute to be there, to watch some show. It was really nice kung fu show. I don't know how it's called, but some jumps, easy positions. It was really nice. I really enjoy it.

Q. Apart from Shaolin temple and kung fu experience, another cultural experience in China?
ARYNA SABALENKA: I just tried the one, it was kung fu. Really looking forward to maybe something else. I really like it.

Q. Talking about your level today, how would you compare how you played today to matches in the last couple months? Did it feel like a step up?
ARYNA SABALENKA: I think US Open title really help me to find this kind of confidence on the court, even in singles. Yeah, I think it's not like a step up in level, it's just a little bit I found my game which I show a little bit earlier on the season, kind of like coming back on my level, try to improve a lot of things, but especially here my mindset.

I mean, I'm happy to show this level. Hopefully I can keep it on the next matches.

Q. This is your first match since winning a Grand Slam in doubles. Does it feel any different being on court knowing you've had that sort of success?
ARYNA SABALENKA: I'm not really thinking about the title, but I just feel a little confidence after we won it. It just help little bit feel free on the court. But I don't really think about that on the court.

Q. What was the preparation like with your team in the last couple weeks?
ARYNA SABALENKA: Actually after US Open I went alone on the tournament, just to be alone, to think about some stuff. Then I just had a little rest, we came here. Our preparation was here.

We just tried to focus on my game, tried to improve some things, don't focus on other things, especially like I'm defending champion, it's a little pressure. I'm trying don't to think about that. I'm just trying to focus on my game and on each match, try to bring everything I have on the court every time.

Q. Can you describe the feeling of being the defending champion? When you walk on the court, do you have flashbacks of last year? What is the pressure exactly?
ARYNA SABALENKA: I don't think it's like pressure. Today was the first time I step in on the court as a defending champion, but it was nice feelings. I remember some matches from the last year, some tough situation also. The feeling of winning the title was really nice. I think it's actually help me to maybe bring my best today.

Q. You could go to Shenzhen in doubles. After the US Open, did you set a goal, I want to play like this, I want to have fun again? Was there a special switch or not at all?
ARYNA SABALENKA: I think I will try to play more free and relax on the court, try to enjoy time on the court, like same on the doubles. In doubles, we were really like enjoying, having fun there. Don't put a lot of pressure.

I just want to play free and enjoy my time on the court every time I'm step in, yeah.

Q. In the last couple weeks, having some ups and downs on the court, off the court, do you feel you learned anything about yourself as a person or player?
ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, definitely I learn a lot of things this year. One of the important one is as free as I'm playing, as fearless on the court as I am, or when it is tough situation, just go for it, don't be afraid of anything, the better I play, my level is going up.

I start to play more consistent, just try to, like, forget about anything else, just be in the moment, put my focus on each point, just be there, go for shots, don't be afraid of missing.

I'd like to say, like, on the middle of the season I was kind of afraid of missing, afraid of making a stupid mistakes. It's actually bring even more mistakes. It's more pressure. Like with every match, the pressure was going up every time. I was really enjoying to be maybe on this tough situation, to be on the court. That's why it was tough to actually win.

Right now maybe US Open help me, final in San Jose, something clicked in my mind. I was, Well, what am I doing here? I'm the tiger. I don't need afraid of something, I just need to go for it, yeah.

Q. You and the team, do things feel stable, calm as compared to where they were at the US Open?
ARYNA SABALENKA: Actually something changed, in a good way. I can see that we're back on our great collaboration or something. We're back on that kind of feeling which was on the beginning of our work. I'm happy with that. It's also help me to play better, to go on the court every time.

Q. This year's Asian swing is longer than last year. China is hosting nine WTA events. More chances to play in China. Any thoughts on the change of schedule, experiencing China in general?
ARYNA SABALENKA: I like to play China. I'd like to play more even if it's possible. I don't know. For me it's always nice to be here. I have a lot of fans here. They always support me. It's help me to play really well.

For me, it's really cool to play in China, especially in Shenzhen, like to finish the season in China, it's very nice.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297