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June 27, 2006

Kim Clijsters


THE MODERATOR: Questions for Kim.

Q. That was potentially a very difficult first round. You must be pleased the way you dealt with it.
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, I mean, she's a good player. I think because of injuries, I think she's dropped back to where she is. I knew that I had to play a good match, and I had to be ready for it to play and to -- to play well and to win today. That was very important.
I think playing her last week in Eastbourne, those three games we played there, it was very hard to tell how good she was playing because she wasn't really moving well. I think today and yesterday she was -- she surprised me a lot I think with the way she was moving. She defended really well.
Yeah, I mean, I think in a short time she'll be back to where she used to be. I think she's a good player.

Q. You seemed extremely focused yourself today during that match. How do you feel going into the next round? Are you feeling focused?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, you have to. I mean, every match, doesn't matter if you play like someone today who is a really good player or you play a girl you don't really know that well. You always have to be focused. You don't want any surprises to happen out there. That's why you just try to just focus mainly on your own game. You have a good opponent standing in front of you, but you just try to, like I said, try to work on things yourself, try to focus on yourself. That's the only thing you can try to do out there is give it your best and, like I said, fight for every point.

Q. Andre's announcement is obviously a pretty big deal. Can you comment on what you think he's meant to tennis as a whole and do you have a particular moment of his career that you remember?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I've admired him so much. It was like Agassi, Sampras. I've always been a very big Agassi fan just because he brought so much just like the emotions I think he brought out on the tennis court were incredible to see. He just fought for every point.
I sometimes get goosebumps just by watching him play because the attention he had in his eyes, I don't think you see that a lot in any player when he's really focused. That's been incredible to see.
I mean, he's been just -- that backhand. If I could just hit one of those backhands down the line like he hits them sometimes, I would be the happiest girl in the world.
But I think he's -- it's going to be a big loss I think for the game to not have him there any more. You see how much he's still loved in tennis. When you see him walking around here, when you see him when he walk out on the court, it's great to see that someone who has been through so much is still just happy to be out there and still enjoys every minute that he can be out on the court.

Q. Do you have a particular moment of his that's your favorite?
KIM CLIJSTERS: US Open wins. There's a few. It's just very hard to just pick one. So, yeah, I mean, I remember him winning the French Open against Medvedev I think. That's one that I think probably stands out the most for me.

Q. How do you occupy yourself at Wimbledon when there's a rain delay?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I'm not staying too far from here. I was happy that yesterday I went home. I went just to stay at the house where we're staying at. I just waited there. Just watched some soccer on TV, just relaxed. I mean, you know, that's the best you can do. You don't want to hang out here 'cause when you go in the players lounge, everything is packed. There's so much noise. Even in the locker rooms, I mean, everybody -- rather be in the gym. It's very, very busy around here.
So I just went to the house, read a little bit, had a little nap as well. Kept calling in every 45 minutes to an hour to know if they had any news or anything new about the weather that they knew.
It was easy. It's nice. That's why it's nice to be in the house at Wimbledon. Like yesterday was a perfect reason.

Q. You spoke about Andre's expression. Can you put that into words?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I think that's what I said. I don't know how much more I can say about that.

Q. Does anyone else on the men's or women's tour have that expression?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I mean, every person's different. It's very hard to compare somebody. But I think that's -- when I think about Agassi, I mean, that's what I get from him, is just that intensity that he always has out there. Even when he's losing, you always see him walk with the same speed. He's always trying to create the points, dominate the points. That's something that I really admired from him. He goes for everything. He tries just to go for every shot. That's what I think is so great about him.

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