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December 31, 2022

Iga Swiatek

Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Team Poland

Press Conference

I. SWIATEK/Y. Putintseva

6-1, 6-3

Team Poland - 1

Team Kazakhstan - 0

THE MODERATOR: Congratulations, Iga. How important was it for Team Poland to get off to a winning start today?

IGA SWIATEK: Thanks. Well, I hope it's going to give some confidence for the next matches. Yeah, well, I'm pretty happy that I won my first match of the season and last of this year, because it would be pretty sad if I would finish this year with a loss. So I'm happy that I played a solid match and on important moments I really could be proactive and win.

Yeah, I think Team Poland is going to make good use of it.


Q. How do you feel when you play your first match of the season? You've done this a few times now. Some players struggle with their first match and take a while to get into it, and others can kind of hit the ground running. How is the experience for you playing that first match after a long break?

IGA SWIATEK: Well, couple of times when I was starting the season, I also was coming back from an injury. It was like a totally different experience. I think I had -- well, yeah, in 2021 I came back after winning Roland Garros, so that's also different. I actually have never had this easy start of the season. Not easy but maybe without any extra, you know, luggage. I meant baggage, not luggage. Is luggage still good or not really?

Q. It makes sense.

IGA SWIATEK: I feel like this time I can actually just focus on getting into the rhythm and not really think about other stuff. We will see how it's going to go.

For sure, it's tough for everybody, but on the other hand, I feel like it's not like I didn't play matches for a couple of months. It's been only like four weeks I think.

So I feel ready.

Q. Coming back to Australia now, so when you were here 12 months ago, you made semis of Adelaide and semis of Australian Open, and it wasn't until you left Australia when you really went up a level and started being great on hard courts and your streak started. Now that 12 months has gone by and you're back in Australia, how different does it feel this team to when you were here last year?

IGA SWIATEK: Well, for sure, you know, I feel like, I don't know, more solid and I feel more stability, as well, because last year Adelaide was my first tournament with new coach. That was my main focus, you know.

Well, but on the other hand, this year I have totally different challenges, you know. So it's really hard to compare, but I feel like I had more time to actually work on some technical stuff at home. Hopefully I'm going to be able to use it on matches. That's all.

Q. So you've known Aga of course already, but what was your experience like having your first match of the year, going back and having her there to encourage you and help you?

IGA SWIATEK: It was great. I actually really like that our captains, they both feel when to talk and when to kind of let me be focused. I really appreciate that because sometimes it's tough for tennis players to like have other people on the bench. I feel like Aga and Dawid, they both get the vibe. I'm pretty happy that they are our captains and they are so experienced.

Yeah, I feel like I can really use their help. Even today, like, I got two pretty important tips, and they really helped me to improve my serve. It's going the right path, for sure.

Q. Just talking about Aga's game, I'm curious, do you remember any particular match when you were younger watching her play and what you learned from watching her?

IGA SWIATEK: Well, the tournament I remember the most is for sure WTA Finals. I have never actually been able to watch her live, because when I started playing junior Grand Slams, I don't know, 2018, she was already like -- I don't know when she finished, actually. 2018 or '19? '18, yeah.

So I played juniors and it was kind of, when I looked at WTA and ATP, it looks for me like a totally different world. But, I mean, she's the one that gave us kind of hope that we can do it, as well. She was the one who did it for the first time, and broke through, you know, all these barriers and just, she was on top of WTA, in top 10 for like 10 years. It was pretty impressive. For sure she kind of cleared the path for rest of us, I think.

Q. You mentioned a couple of times how you have different challenges or different goals for this year, which makes sense. Are you happy to talk about those? What are some of those?

IGA SWIATEK: Well, I just think that, you know, it's going to be pretty easy for my head to kind of compare everything to last year. I feel like it's not going to be helpful, because last year was so, on the one hand, it wasn't perfect, you know, but sometimes when you win tournaments, all your head can remember is those good moments and that it went so smoothly.

It wasn't like that, but I didn't really want to go into those tournaments and, I don't know, be held back by my previous results. I wanted to treat as new chapters, you know, so I'm going to try to do that. Yeah, but this is the biggest challenge, I'd say.

Yeah, we'll see how I'm going to go with that. Usually when I have goals like that, I had like ups and downs, but I feel like I'm getting stronger and stronger in my mind, so maybe I'm going to be able to control that.

Q. How did it feel to have Aga on the court with you today?

IGA SWIATEK: Pretty amazing. On one hand, you know that Aga is next to you, but on the other hand, you just want to be focused, so I really had to balance that.

As I said, you know, it's nice to have that kind of person who kind of gets everything and you know that she's been through basically everything probably in her career. So she knows what she's talking about, and you can always use that knowledge.

But, yeah, as I said, I'm also happy that she understands where is the moment for me to kind of focus on what I want to do, and I feel like it's not too much crowd on the bench, and this is great, because she knows that the most important thing is to really be focused.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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