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September 1, 2021

Aryna Sabalenka

New York, New York, USA

Press Conference

A. SABALENKA/T. Zidansek

6-3, 6-1

THE MODERATOR: Could you start out by telling us your thoughts about the match and how you feel you're playing at this particular point.

ARYNA SABALENKA: Well, I think it was really solid match, and I did everything I could in this match.

Yeah, I'm really happy with this win. Yeah, I think it was great level for me today.

Q. Looked like you were concerned about your hand...

ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, I hit it really hard, and I don't know. We'll see tomorrow what's going on with my fingers, because right now it's a little bit bigger (smiling). It's the color of my finger is changing. It's getting darker.

I don't know. I'm happy that I was able to hold my racquet, and I did everything I could after I fall down. I'm really happy with the win. And, yeah, we'll see tomorrow. I think it's needs to cool down and after one night I can tell what's going on with my fingers.

Q. Did you trip and fall?

ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, I slide, and then I don't know what happened, but I just fall down on my right arm. And I hit it really hard with the racquet.

I think I bend it too in some ways so it's not that hard. No, I'm kidding.

Q. What was your level of concern when you fell and you hit your hand? Looked like you were shaking it for a while.

ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, I was really scared that I broke it, because my feelings was like, it was really painful. I was really scared of my fingers, and I was thinking like this is such a lucky day (smiling).

Yeah, I was really worrying about my arm and my hand, and I'm really happy that I could finish this match. I have an extra day to see what's going on, and maybe to do the best recovery I can do. Yeah, we'll see. But I'm really, really hoping that I will be able to play on Friday, yes? Yes, on Friday.

Q. Vika was in here earlier talking about how she was really happy that all the fans at this event are vaccinated and that's a requirement now. She was saying it was sort of strange that it's a requirement for the fans but not for the players. Curious what you think of that difference.

ARYNA SABALENKA: No comments. I don't want to comment on this situation.

Q. Your next match, you face Danielle Collins who has obviously played very well this summer. Can you talk about the challenge of playing her, what you need to do?

ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, she's a great player. We had a couple matches against each other, and it was tough matches. She's playing well right now, moving much better than she was moving before.

Yeah, she's I would say powerful player, and she can come back whenever, like, whenever she want to. So she's dangerous player and it's going to be tricky to play against her, especially in the United States when everyone will support her. But I am used to it.

Yeah, we'll see. Yeah, she's a great player.

Q. After making your big run at Wimbledon, wondering how much easier your mind is about Grand Slams now. Do you feel like you sort of got over a hill?

ARYNA SABALENKA: It's never easy, you know. It's never easy. It's all about put my focus on the right place, you know. Like I'm trying to focusing on my game, what I should do to win this match, for example, or like I just try to stay in the moment. This is the only different before I had a nice result on Wimbledon.

I'm just trying to focusing on my game and myself and stay in the moment. That's it.

Q. I just wanted to ask you about the mental aspect of managing a day like this when you look at the weather forecast. In the morning it didn't even seem possible perhaps that you could make it on the court to play. How do you balance maybe thinking you're not going to play at all to then things clearing up such that you're then on the court having to focus on something you might not have entirely planned what happened?

ARYNA SABALENKA: Well, I had a lot of situation when the weather app was showing rain all day, and then it was changing like in the second. It wasn't rain at all.

So I was trying to focus on myself, like I did a good warmup because we could hit indoors. I was just like sitting in a quiet room where is nobody else. I was just trying to chill and relax and see what happen.

This is something that we cannot control, and I was thinking like if I will play today, then it's good. If not, then it's okay, because we have an extra day, and so then tomorrow it's sunny day, like for sure I will finish before my next match.

So I wasn't really worrying about the weather. I was just like chilling in the quiet room and just see what's gonna happen. That's it.

Because when you worry about it, then you wasting energy. I was trying to stay cool and relaxed.

Q. I think that was your first time playing on Grandstand Court. What do you make of that court? It is one of the newer ones on the grounds in the last couple of years.

ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, I practice on this court before US Open started. I felt like the court is a little bit slower maybe because it's no roof, so it's a little bit more air. That's why it's a little bit slower.

But overall, it's great court. It feels like it's a huge stadium. It's really nice to play on this stadium.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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