October 21, 2022
Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico
V. AZARENKA/C. Gauff
7-6, 4-6, 6-3
THE MODERATOR: Strong performance today against a young, upcoming player. How do you feel about your performance?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah, definitely she's a young player, but she's had quite a few already experiences on the tour.
I love watching Coco play. As I said on the court, I believe that she's going to make some great things in the sport. I feel like she just needs a little bit more to kind of take that one step forward. She's very talented.
But I was just very happy that I was able to stay very strong from the beginning till the end, be consistent, take my chances, create more chances when I couldn't convert them, yeah, play with a lot of pressure.
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. After this match and your great level, is it possible your dream will be a champion here in Guadalajara?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I mean, it's always the goal. I just always play one match at a time. That's what I'm going to do.
This win doesn't guarantee a win for me in the tournament, so I need to stay focused, continue to fight for every ball, then we'll see what happens.
Can't predict it...
Q. Maybe there wasn't a full stadium, but a lot were cheering for you. How do you feel about it? Also, today we received a bad news about Simona Halep. I don't know if you can tell us something about her.
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I'll answer about Simona first.
I saw the news today, but I don't know anything about the situation. I just hope it gets resolved whichever way is correct.
I've played against Simona many, many times. I hope she gets the resolution that she wants.
Q. And about the crowd?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah, sorry.
The crowd was amazing. It's really what makes me motivated to continue to play, is going out there. It was such a warm welcome. I feel so great playing in Mexico. I just want to continue to play, play another night match, because it was really an amazing atmosphere where people can come.
But yeah, looking forward to another match, going out there and giving my best.
Q. How important was the experience you had to solve this match?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I don't know if the experience really...
The only thing that helped me today for myself personally was the way I played the match because it has been quite a tough year. I had a few very frustrating losses where it didn't go my way in a tough, close three sets. I'm glad that this one, I was able to do a bit better in those important moments and take it a bit over the edge.
I don't know if it's experience, me playing on tour, or really just determination to really want to do better.
Q. How does it feel to play with young players like Coco today?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Tough, especially when you think about that she is as old as my career. It's not easy (smiling).
I was one of those players before. You come on the tour all excited, have nothing to lose. Well, she has a lot of pressure now being at the top of the game. I think a lot of expectations because Coco broke out so early in her career. But it's not easy.
I think they recover better than I am at this stage (smiling). But I felt physically really good so won't complain about that.
Q. Before the tournament started you were in a chill mood. Maybe that helped you keep winning throughout the tournament?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah.
Q. So now that you're in semifinals, are you still going to be that chill? Is it going to help you, or does the mindset change now?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, you know, people who know me very well actually know that I'm pretty chill outside of the court, so... On the court I'm more intense.
But I feel like right now it's just the way I feel best is to be steady. I'll try to continue to build on that.
Q. You see that the Mexican crowd was cheering your name a lot. Are you feeling kind of local?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah. You know what, in Monterrey, when I was in Monterrey a couple years ago, one of my friends in Mexico made me a fake Mexican ID. They put like a middle game Guadalupe, because apparently it's supposed to be a Mexican name. I don't know why (laughter).
Yeah, I have pretty great relationship with the culture. As I said earlier, I have quite a lot of friends. I definitely feel like second home.
Q. Can we call you Lupita, that is short for Guadalupe?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I mean, I don't know. I like my name. Can it be Mexican, Victoria?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Victoria is such an international name, I feel like it can stick pretty much everywhere.
Q. You told us about your kid is waiting for you, wherever he is. I was wondering, how do you deal with that? Every win is another day being away from your son.
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Yeah, I mean, it's not easy. It's not easy to be away from him. I have to provide for my family, so I do play. That's my job. That's my passion.
Also in the same time I want him to have a good example of, if you believe in something, you work hard for your dreams, you can achieve them. I hope he does get a little bit of that work ethic and lesson from me.
But it is what it is. I won't play for too long. I want to enjoy the time that I have left on the court, try to give it my best. Once I'm done, I'm done. It won't be coming back like some other people doing (smiling).
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports