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May 17, 2007

Serena Williams


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Congratulations.

Q. Is that fuscia? Is that what we call it? Got to report these things for my female readers.
SERENA WILLIAMS: It's more of a pink. I don't know, I can't think of anything. It's not fuscia, though. It's more of a dark pink.

Q. How about a fitness report now since the last time we've seen you. You look a lot trimmer.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Thanks. I've been working out and just trying to -- during clay court season you have to get yourself together and work hard. All matches are generally at least half hour long are than normal.

Q. She's caused you problems in the past and she did so again today, didn't she?
SERENA WILLIAMS: It was better today than I think in the past, I think, in general. It was also our first time on clay.
I knew she was going to be a tougher opponent on clay, so I think I did pretty well. I thought she would play a little better actually.

Q. You lost your temper out there on one occasion and smashed the ball towards the line judge. It was a close thing, wasn't it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, my God, I felt so bad. I think I need to go to that anger management class, 12-step program. Thank God I didn't hit her. I felt so bad. Obviously I wasn't going for the line judge.
See, that's what happens: You gets angry and lose control and next thing you know you could take someone out.

Q. It's not typical is it?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Not at all. I'm glad she was okay though. I thank God I didn't hit her.

Q. Was the reason for that your serve not working well?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I didn't serve well at all today. I think in that game I hit maybe one first serve in like a 70-point game. I was just frustrated. I was like, Why is it not going in?
I had practiced a lot of serves. But it's okay, usually when I serve bad in the middle or the beginning of a tournament I get better, especially in the next two weeks.

Q. If you had to say and point out the difference between the Serena that won the tournament here and nowadays, what, apart from the age and different look, what has changed?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I told you I don't remember anything from winning the tournament. I don't even remember who I beat or anyone I might have played. I don't have a good memory, so...
I mean, I think that year I got to the finals of Berlin. I remember that, and I remember I won, but I don't even know what year that was.
So I guess I was just younger and, I don't know, I don't remember.

Q. What did you mean when you say that you expected that she will play better? What was the point?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I mean, we had such hard matches in the past. Like I mean, even the first time I played her I think it was 7-6. I always had a 7-6 or 7-5 set against her, so I was expecting her to stay out there and be ready to go the distance, and that's what I meant.
She played well, especially in the last couple games. She never gave up. I mean, she felt as if she was still going to win, so that was -- that wasn't good for me but it was good for her and a good experience for her to take away.

Q. You've had a variety of ailments. Do you feel that everything is pulling together now for this tournament? I don't know if you're playing next week in Paris.
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, I do. I feel that everything is coming together. I'm doing pretty well considering. I've just been working hard on staying healthy.
Like I said, my goal this year was to stay healthy. So besides a groin injury, which was kind of like a freak injury, I've been pretty good.

Q. Are you playing next week?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, no, I'm not.

Q. What do you think about your next opponent, Schnyder?
SERENA WILLIAMS: She plays well here. She plays really well on the clay and she's really tricky. I've had some good matches against her. I think she beat me once in Charleston maybe.
So she is really tricky and she hits those crazy shots. It's going to be a good match regardless.

Q. Even though you don't have a great memory but you remember Schnyder and Peer when you played, do you remember what is difference in the atmosphere in Rome or in this tournament? There is something new that is happening that didn't happen before?
SERENA WILLIAMS: You know, I always come to Rome and have so much fun here, like with my friends, and just with, you know, going out and hanging out and always seeing different sights.
So, you know, it's almost as if tennis is secondary in Rome, although it is my first priority. But I have so much fun off the court and for me being American, it's such great history here that we don't have in our country.
So it's ease hey for me to remember what I did in Charleston. I remember losses a lot better too for some reason. I don't remember your other question, though.

Q. Is there anything different in Rome compared to the last time you were here? I remember you went to all the shops. This year is the same, or not?
SERENA WILLIAMS: No. This year I'm pretty much just hanging out in the hotel. I've kind of seen everything. I guess I'm just kind of jaded now.
I don't want to go to the Colosseum or anything of that stuff. I feel like, I've been here; done that type stuff. I feel Roman.

Q. I remember your bodyguard was a friend of a bodyguard of Venus. Are they still the same? You still in touch? You don't see them anymore?
SERENA WILLIAMS: That's a bunch he said/she said, my sister's baby daddy cousin Tracy, kind of like that, you know. You didn't catch that?

Q. No. You are teasing. Say it again.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, that's kind of like saying my sister's baby daddy cousin Tracy. Okay, it's basically -- yeah, they're still my friends. I talked them. I just saw him right now. He was at my match today, so good friends.

Q. What can you tell us about Venus, when she might be ready?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Venus is playing in Istanbul next week. So what's the day, Thursday? I wonder if she might be leaving tomorrow.

Q. Next week she'll play?

Q. In Paris.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yes, of course.

Q. Playing so well and so tough and so concentrate, you think that you could win the Grand Slam this year?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I'm just trying to win the French Open like 128 other girls, so that's what I'm here to do, and I'm just taking is one match at a time.
Hopefully I'll be playing seven rounds in Paris and winning seven matches, and then after that then I'm going to go to the next Grand Slam.
Only two people can do it this year so I'm one of those two.

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