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February 8, 2021

Venus Williams

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Press Conference

V. WILLIAMS/K. Flipkens

7-5, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How does it feel to get that first win against a tricky opponent?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Oh, my gosh, great. Winning is always fun. Never easy. She's definitely tricky. We've had some great battles in the past, as well.

Q. Everyone talks about your age, but is that front of mind for you when you're on the court?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Would it be front of mind for you if you were playing a professional tennis match?

Q. Not necessarily.

VENUS WILLIAMS: There you go.

Q. Serena said she really had to up her game in practice hitting with you those two and a half weeks. What is it like for you?

VENUS WILLIAMS: She's the best player to hit with. You definitely don't want to miss because it's your sister, so you want to give her a good practice. Also her intensity level just raises your level.

Yeah, we definitely had some good practices. I think it definitely helped both of us.

Q. Naomi said the thing that strikes her about you is you're always smiling. She marvels at how you still love the game so much. Why do you think your passion for the game remains strong? You've been at it for a high level for many years. A lot of young phenoms like you burned out.

VENUS WILLIAMS: I like my job. This is Job A.

Q. Doing this job, not giving full attention to V Starr.

VENUS WILLIAMS: I got a good team.

Q. The crowds are a bit down compared to other years.

VENUS WILLIAMS: Compared to what we were playing with last year, which is zero, which is huge. I am not complaining. It's exciting. I think every single person there was probably in awe to be sitting at a sporting event, as much as I was to have them there.

Q. We think of you guys as entertaining the crowd. How can the crowd help you on the court, affect your performance?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I mean, definitely playing in front of the big crowds, it's just atmosphere of course that is super enjoyable. You just can't replicate that without the fans.

Q. Do you appreciate the crowd more after not having fans? Did you always know they played a role, there was the reciprocal relationship, or did it take not having fans for a year?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, definitely I had to live without before I could appreciate it, which is oftentimes the case in life for us humans. I'm appreciative now.

Q. What would you like people to learn from your journey, from what you've done?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Gosh, I don't think about that on a daily basis. I'm trying to get better every day. I think that no matter what happens to you in life, you always hold your head up high, you give a hundred million percent. That's what I do every single day. That's something that I can be proud of.

Q. One of the differences is the absence of lines-people. What are your thoughts about not having lines-people here and the possibility for that being the wave of the future?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Haven't thought about the future much. I guess the calls seem pretty accurate, so so far it's been fine. I think the lines-people are also pretty accurate, too. They're usually right on the money, so... It could be interesting to see where this goes.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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