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September 27, 2019

Naomi Osaka

Beijing, China

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Coming all the way from the United States, what do you want to take away from this event?
NAOMI OSAKA: Actually I was in Japan before this. I mean, last year I made the semis here, so definitely would like to do better.

I'm just trying to take it one match at a time.

Q. What have you been working on in practice since the US Open that led you to your success in Japan?
NAOMI OSAKA: I mean, I wouldn't say anything drastic. I just feel like I'm a bit more relaxed because in New York I had to think about defending the title. After that I'm kind of, like, loose. I'm a bit more confident in myself.

Q. Last week I think you were under a lot of pressure, being in Osaka, a lot of Japanese fans. After a big week, very successful week, how do you feel emotionally and physically right now?
NAOMI OSAKA: Yeah, I mean, it was weird. I felt pressure but I didn't feel pressure because people sort of say it's like the home crowd, you know? I definitely felt that. They gave me a lot of energy. I think that's part of the reason why I played so well.

And I guess coming into this tournament, I know that all the best players are here, and we all want to do well at the end of the year. I'm just expecting really hard matches at this point.

Q. Do you have any pregame routines or food you eat, music you listen to?
NAOMI OSAKA: I mean, I listen to a lot of music regardless. Like it doesn't matter if it's matches or anything. Da Baby just released his new album. That's kind of what I was listening to walking in here.

Yeah, I think foods I eat? Carbs before a match for energy. I'm not too superstitious. I try not to be too superstitious.

Q. I think this tournament is going to be very important, especially for the WTA Finals. What are your feelings? Do you feel any pressure or...
NAOMI OSAKA: Yeah, I mean, for me, I would really want to make the Finals. I kind of organized the next month of my schedule based around it. Definitely that's my goal.

But at the same time I don't want to think too much into the future. I have to think about the matches that I have to play here. I guess it's like one of those things where time will tell. I just have to focus on the people I'm playing at this tournament.

Q. With your results since you left clay and grass behind, seems like you're now back on hard courts, you've done well at the four tournaments that you played. With those improved results, has it been as simple as switching back to hard courts and leaving clay and grass behind? Are there other factors at play that helped you find a bit more form consistently?
NAOMI OSAKA: Yeah, I mean, I guess last year or maybe even a couple months ago I would say, like, it's just a surface change. But I've been thinking, like, I really believe it's the belief in myself. I think once you start doubting your abilities, that's when you start not playing as well, then you make excuses, like I'm not playing well because I'm playing on clay and stuff.

Yeah, I think it's just the belief.

Q. In Japan you were killing your serve. Do you know any key points that you've been working on in practice, some things you want to pinpoint and work on before you start this tournament?
NAOMI OSAKA: Like serve-wise or just in general?

Q. Your serve in Japan was on point. Is there anything like groundstrokes or volleys that you've been working on especially?
NAOMI OSAKA: Not really. I just try to keep everything going. Like, if I was serving well in Japan, I'd want to keep practicing my serve. But I'm not the type of person that sort of thinks about one specific thing. I just think in general.

Q. Do you have any plans outside of the tennis matches? Do you have anything you do for fun outside of practice and stuff while you're here that you're looking forward to?
NAOMI OSAKA: Normally I do, but honestly I haven't thought of anything since I got to Beijing. I know some people visit the Great Wall, but I don't really feel like I have time. I've been just kind of chilling at the hotel.

Q. (Question about challenges.)
NAOMI OSAKA: I mean, I would say the challenges -- I don't know. I don't know, it feels weird to win a tournament after such a long time. At the same time before last year I didn't win any tournaments. Just changing that mentality a little bit.

When I got to the final, just sort of not -- is that a challenge? I guess just trying not to think too much about winning, but only in the finals. Other than that, I thought that I was in pretty good. Sorry.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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