June 21, 2021
Eastbourne, England, UK
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. You're coming off a week in Berlin, were only able to get one match in. How do you feel coming into your second warmup event before the big tournament next week?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I feel okay. Last week definitely wasn't as good as I expected for my first tournament back on grass, but I want to cut myself some slack. I haven't played in three years, and I haven't gotten that many matches in this year because of other things.
But I have been practicing a lot on grass, have been getting a lot of time on court. Hopefully I can progress in the matches.
Q. I want to get your thoughts. The National Bank Open in August was just approved in Montreal. Are you pretty excited about that? I want to get your thoughts and your reaction.
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Yeah, I know. It's super, super exciting going back hopefully to defend my title. It will be really, really exciting.
Q. You mentioned about not being able to play so much recently, you've had to be patient. Are you a patient person?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Definitely not (smiling). I had to really grow through the years to improve that, which I think it is a little bit, but there are so many different circumstances that keep getting thrown at me to keep testing that.
So far I feel like I'm dealing with it okay, and I know it's going to continue to improve. Gotta stay patient with that, as well.
Q. What have you learnt about yourself during this period?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Perseverance in obviously not playing but continuing to fight, continuing to train, and dealing with what's being thrown at me I think is one of the most important things that I think I learned.
But like I said, things keep just getting thrown at me, and I feel like some days it's harder than others, for sure, but I'm still here and I'm still fighting and I want to win.
Q. Just wondering what your memories of Wimbledon are from your debut there in 2017, and also in qualifying the following year. Does that now seem to you a long time ago or not?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: It does feel like a long time ago, even though it really isn't. But I remember when I qualified I was playing super well in the qualifying. Then that was off-site. And then main draw came along, and I was super overwhelmed by everything. I'm, like, Oh, my God, I'm playing my first Grand Slam, you know, and it's Wimbledon.
I just remember feeling confident but at the same time, like, Oh, my God, I'm finally here. That really showed during my match, and I got whooped, like, 2 and 2. I forgot who it was.
But, yeah, I remember coming out of that match just, even though I played like absolute crap, like, I was just so happy to be there.
Q. Does it give you extra pleasure that a relatively short time later you're now going back to Wimbledon as a top seed and a Grand Slam champion?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Yeah, it's pretty cool to think that I get to be a top seed at Wimbledon. It's going to be my second main draw appearance, but don't have to go through qualifying or anything like that. So I do feel more confident obviously going into the tournament, but I'm just going to take it match after match, and hopefully I can get more matches in this week before.
Q. You have alluded to all these things that keep being thrown at you, but just to sort of reiterate the point, you're in a very unique position. You win a Grand Slam and then, bam, you hit pandemic and can't play for a year and it's just incredible sets of circumstances that literally, well, you're the last person to win a Grand Slam, so no one else has faced. I know you've mentioned it already, but tell us what the last year has been like, because that is so unique that it feels like it needs to be sort of stated again.
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Yeah. Don't know where to start. After doing so well in 2019, boom, I get injured. I'm off for six months. I'm ready to play Indian Wells, first tournament back, and then literally that tournament is when everything started. I was there for, like, three days and everyone said it's canceled and I had to go back.
I was just at home, sitting on my butt for, I don't know how long, like six, seven months. I mean, I was training for sure here and there, but it was a pandemic. There were so many restrictions.
And then other things happened during that time, some health issues with my family and this and that. So it was super hard for me to deal with. But like I said before, I really tried to persevere through those moments. But then something else happened, which was the quarantine in Australia, and then the quarantine in Madrid, me catching COVID.
So it's just like these things back and forth. To me, I try to have the mindset of everything happens for a reason, and it's kind of just helped me for the bigger picture and my purpose in life, and I want to try to take every moment as a positive in a way.
Even though it could seem like the world is crashing down, I made sure to stay as grateful as I could, because, like, other people have it way worse, you know, so that really keeps me going. I try to have that big picture in mind all the time.
Q. It feels like form and (indiscernible) is so crucial in professional sport. I imagine you got on a roll back at the US Open which took you all the way. How difficult is it realistically to recapture form like that sort of straightaway? Is it going to be something that suddenly you can have a great first match, can feel confident and just go from there, or is it something -- I mean, what are your expectations going into next week, given what's happened the last year?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Yeah, it's super different, though. Like in 2019 I was coming as No. 150 in the world, I think, even more, no pressure, just going out there and doing what I love to do.
Now it's different. Like, there is for sure more pressure, more expectations that I try not to focus on, but sometimes that's hard. It's just a new circumstance, and I have to learn how to deal with that a little bit better.
I don't know if it's going to be a click and everything's going to be okay. I really hope that's the case, sooner than later, but I don't know. I just want to keep dealing with what gets thrown at me in the best way that I can, learn from it, and hopefully I can get back that rhythm really quick and trust the process.
Q. Welcome to Eastbourne. Sorry about the rain. It never rains two days in a row, I can assure you of that. My question follows from the other two in a sense. You're coming here off the back of Roland Garros and Berlin venues, big cities. I wonder how much difference the venue makes? Because here you are, for a 500 tournament, Eastbourne is a small venue. Does that help in building your momentum?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: I don't really think about that too much. Like every tournament I go into, I just want to do my best and hopefully win it.
I guess it's like that unconscious thoughts that you get, like, Oh, it's not a Grand Slam, maybe it's not that important sometimes, but I try not to focus too much on that and just go in and do my best no matter what.
Q. I was wondering, in Eastbourne you're not with a coach right now. What's it been like without a coach?
BIANCA ANDREESCU: Yeah, that too for sure, it wasn't easy doing that, but we felt that in our hearts it was the best decision. That's another circumstance where, like, I have to get used to because I have always had a coach, you know.
But to me, like, I know the game of tennis. It's definitely not the same having a coach by your side, but I want to make sure I don't make a rush decision on the following things that I want to do, coach, hitting partner, this and that. I really don't know yet. Yeah, just going to do my best with what I have right now.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports