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July 16, 2006

Vania King


Q. Bad luck. She was on fire today, wasn't she?
VANIA KING: Yeah, Kim played really well, and I -- I don't think the score reflected how well both she and I played. But well done to her.

Q. Well done to her, but an experience for you at least. Your Fed Cup debut. How exciting was that for you?
VANIA KING: It was very exciting. I didn't get the news until last night when Zina came up to me and said she wanted me to play. I was very excited. This is a great experience for me. I'm not going to take a win or loss or bad score to change my mind. This is a great experience and I'm going to learn from it.

Q. When Zina told you the fact you'd be playing singles, what was your immediate reaction?
VANIA KING: Just kind of a shocked, "Oh." At first I thought she was going to replace me with Jamea. When she told me she would like me to play with Kim, I was immediately -- you know, after the first shock, I was immediately very relieved and grateful. Just went out there for the opportunity.

Q. When you went out on court the early stage of the match, were you very nervous?
VANIA KING: You couldn't tell (laughter)? Obviously, this is Fed Cup. Also I'm playing, you know, Kim Clijsters. But, I mean, you have to take everything in stride. I'm going to learn from this experience. I think I'll do better next time.

Q. Also I guess one thing you'll take away is the experience of playing against a crowd that was totally against you. It wasn't just the opponent, but you were having to battle a rather partisan crowd. They weren't rude or anything, but it's pretty deafening, the noise they make.
VANIA KING: Yes, it was. Actually I went into the court unsure how I would take to the crowd's noise. I wasn't able to block it out totally. I mean, they were -- my ears were ringing (laughter), but I managed to stay focused and tried to play my game.

Q. What was Zina telling you during the match?
VANIA KING: She was telling me to play one point at a time, stay focused, stay positive basically.

Q. So as you were saying, you'll take away the element of being positive out of this irrespective of what the score line was. So how important do you think an experience like this, playing Fed Cup for your nation, will be with the rest of your career?
VANIA KING: Very important. I mean, it's such an honor to play for your country. Just being out here, playing for your country, there's a lot of pressure. It's quite unlike just going out and playing at a regular tournament when they call up the score, they call King, instead they call out USA. So I think it's going to be most helpful for the future.

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