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May 9, 2022

Iga Swiatek

Roma, Italia

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: Iga, welcome to Rome.

IGA SWIATEK: Thank you.

THE MODERATOR: We know you've taken the last couple weeks off, rested, trained. Talk about what you've been up to the last couple weeks.

IGA SWIATEK: Basically I just had like five or six days off without the racquet, which was pretty nice. It's pretty good to have opportunity to do something like that in between tournaments, in the middle of the season.

I feel like I'm more fresh. For sure mentally and physically I had time to rest. Yeah, I came back to work after these five days. We went to Rafael Nadal Academy, so it was pretty cool.

I mean, it's pretty weird because I really rested, then they almost killed me on the practices so... Hopefully it's going to give me more power and I'm going to be more ready to play well next tournaments.

THE MODERATOR: We'll start with questions.

Q. You came here as 15 in the world. You won the tournament. Now you're reigning champion, the No. 1 in the world. How much has changed your world, your confidence, your mind?

IGA SWIATEK: A lot. I feel like I'm a different player right now. Last year I feel like I still was trying to find some kind of, I don't know, consistency in the wins that I had, and also like confirmation that Roland Garros wasn't just like a one tournament.

I feel like I found that and I feel like I can kind of move forward and just focus on my next goals. Yeah, for sure the tournaments that I played this year, they have shown me that I can play better tennis on hard courts.

Right now the transition that I have to do to clay, it's pretty different because usually it was like, Whoa, clay, finally I can play well. Right now it's a little bit different because I feel like my level was high anyway. It didn't, like, struck me this year.

Hopefully I'm just going to be able to enjoy tennis as much as I did for whole season.

Q. Did you follow at all any of what happened in Madrid? What did you make of Ons' big win?

IGA SWIATEK: Honestly, I feel like she deserves it. Last year she had such a great run. I know that they really, like, excited for the finals. She was working really hard to make it there. Because of the injury, she couldn't.

Well, for sure it teaches us a lot. But on the other hand I know that she, yeah, did everything she could to get there. I'm really happy for her that finally she's getting her big win.

Yeah, I mean, she has that kind of tennis that I know she can play really good. Her tennis, she has a lot of variety. She plays differently than most of the girls on tour.

Fully deserved.

Q. Another question about Madrid. Did you watch any of Carlos Alcaraz's run to the final, to become champion?

IGA SWIATEK: I honestly didn't watch any matches, but I want to watch highlights for sure. I'm going to do that. I didn't have time because, like, last couple of days have been really busy for me in terms of practicing. I'm going to do that for sure because what he's doing is amazing. Yeah, wow, like winning against Rafa and Novak on the same tournament, just crazy.

Q. Last year at the end of the season you made a press conference in Poland where you explained what you were going to change about your game. Then you hired Tomasz. Do you think it was more change of attitude than technique, especially against aggressive players?

IGA SWIATEK: For sure in the first tournaments, for sure the technique stuff that we changed, you could see that maybe on last tournaments. But on the first ones, I think it's pretty hard for the coach to change, like, many things. It wouldn't be smart because he also wanted for me to feel confident, not to change everything, to just keep me doing the same kind of work I was doing before to have some kind of logical process.

But for sure he helped me to change my attitude towards my game. I kind of trusted him in terms of my more aggressive game. He convinced me to just play more aggressively. Before I didn't really think it was my kind of game. Right now I feel like most of the success that I had this season was because of that.

We're going to see how it's going to work on clay courts because basically here you don't have to play that aggressively. For me, it's pretty weird because right now I have to switch from more aggressive game to the game that I had before. It's tricky. But it's tennis. It's the most important thing to adjust properly. So yeah...

Q. You spoke in the beginning about not feeling that you have to win on the clay anymore because you've done well on hard. Does that take the pressure off this upcoming period? When you have the pressure, you did really well. If the pressure is a little off, how confident are you feeling?

IGA SWIATEK: I mean, pressure is constantly on. I mean, it's not like I'm analyzing it every week because I would get pretty tired just doing that. I hope that I'm going to be more relaxed.

Yeah, when I came on clay court, I felt like people are, you know, hoping for me to win. The media also are doing more fuss. Basically I just need to cut it off as I did on any other tournament and I think it's going to be okay.

But, like, from my side, I think without all the voices around the pressure would be a little bit lower. But, you know, it's not like we have that comfort to only work with our heads.

Basically I think it's going to be fun, but the pressure is a little bit higher.

Q. I saw you went to the Rafael Nadal Museum. I know you know a lot about him anyway. When you were there, did you see anything that took you by surprise? Did it give you more inspiration ahead of these two tournaments?

IGA SWIATEK: For sure it was inspiring. Yeah, you could see all the trophies, which is amazing. Seeing numbers on Wikipedia is one thing, but seeing all the trophies, how consistent he was sometimes in some tournaments, it's amazing.

Actually I really like this museum. It was not only about Rafa and about tennis, but also about other sports. You could see, like, there was Fernando Alonso Formula 1 where he won world championships.

Yeah, it was just interesting because you could see the sports, not only tennis, not only what Rafa did, so that's nice.

Q. You were pretty much full on from Dubai all the way through Stuttgart. With having taken the break, refocused, having a training block ahead of this, does it feel like that chapter is closed and now this is a new chapter of this season for you or do you feel like it's a continuation of what you've already accomplished over the last four events?

IGA SWIATEK: Yeah, I feel like the chapter is a little bit closed. Still I'm coming back to this moment, which is maybe not good sometimes because you can get your expectations to be high.

Honestly, no, I feel like it's close. I'm working this season also not to look on what happened, doesn't matter if it's good or bad, just looking forward. I think it's going to give me more freedom, my mind is going to be, like, more clear.

Basically, yeah, I feel like the chapter is closed, but I still need to focus on what's next because sometimes I'm coming back to what happened.

Q. You weren't obviously in Madrid, but your name kept popping up in press conferences, other players talking about you. They have very complimentary things to say about what you've accomplished. Were you aware of that at all? What is your sense being a No. 1 and having all these people say very nice things about you?

IGA SWIATEK: That is probably one of the nicest things I experienced on tour, I would say. I saw what Coco was saying and Ons. Yeah, I wasn't even hoping that players were going to talk about me that way because it's such a nice thing.

Honestly, I'm pretty glad with just being myself and people are thinking that I'm nice and stuff (smiling). Yeah, I mean, it's kind of sometimes overwhelming that they're looking up to me because honestly, two years ago, I was the one looking up to everybody. It's such a new position for me that I don't really know how to react.

Hopefully I'm going to get used to it and hopefully I'm going to have a chance to, yeah, I don't know, show good work and good kind of examples, yeah.

Q. Are you in Rome with your famous cat Grappa?

IGA SWIATEK: She's too old to travel, yeah (smiling).

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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