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May 7, 2009

Victoria Azarenka


7-6, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Did you expect your opponent to adopt a tactic like she did on the court with so many moon balls?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I was kind of -- I was surprised, because the last time I played her it was completely different game, but we were also playing indoors on the hard court.
She surprise me a little bit with that, yeah, but I don't think that really last the whole match.

Q. There were a lot breaks to the serve. I mean, how do you explain? It is normal for you to be broken so many times and to break the others, or not?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: No, it's actually not normal, but I don't know really what was really going on with the serve. I was playing I guess a little bit better on my return and she was playing a little bit more consistent.
But there were just too many mistakes from my side and from her side on her serve. It's very unusual to have that, but that's what happens.

Q. Psychological?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Probably, yeah.

Q. You felt a little bit nervous in the court? It was maybe you were making many more mistakes than usual probably, much more than yesterday. Was it maybe because you were not ready to face all these moon balls? What was the reason?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: You know, I don't know. It was just -- I wasn't really patient with myself at all. I was trying to do so many things in one point that I just didn't know how to exactly do it.
It was a pretty bad performance from me today. I'm just happy that I managed to go through all that. It was a little bit tough conditions with the wind and everything, but you cannot blame. It's for both of us.
I'm just happy that I managed to go through a bad day of tennis not being very patient with myself. I'm just happy to go through that.

Q. Is it more difficult to come from Belarus than from Russia for a player who wants to become a professional, or not? Are you helped the same way? You let's have the kind of help from the Federation somewhat, or have to do all by yourself?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, I'm kind of doing everything by myself, and in Russia pretty much the same thing. So it doesn't really matter. It's the way you manage your career and the way you manage everything in your life.

Q. So there is not any advantage to be Russian than Belarusian?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I don't know how is it to be Russian, because I never been Russian player and I don't know what they help or they don't help. So I cannot really say what's advantage or what's not advantage.

Q. Do you have any idol in Belarus, like Mirnyi or someone else before him, or not? Any inspiration?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, not really inspiration or an idol, but definitely somebody I was looking up to when I was growing up.

Q. You are the player who made the biggest improvements this year in terms of rankings, and maybe in terms of level of play. Which are your goals in terms of this season?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, for me, I'm taking it step by step, you know. I'm No. 8. Actually, I'll be now No. 9 or whatever. I'll just take it step by step. Every tournament, every match is different.
I don't really look forward to, you know, finish No. 1 or whatever this year. Whatever happens, happens. I'm definitely going to work hard and try to do as much as possible to achieve all my goals.

Q. The way you talk, you speak very good English. Were you raised and stayed a long time in America?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Thank you for the compliment. I haven't been raised in the U.S., I just moved there since I was 15. My coach is speaking English, so I kind of had to get used to it.

Q. Which is, in your opinion, the shot you must improve most?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I don't know. I mean, everything. I actually want to improve everything in my game, any aspect of my game. I cannot really name one particular.

Q. Which is maybe your favorite shot, the one you are happy to hit?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: My favorite shot always been the backhand since I was a kid. I guess it was I was just very weak. I could hit with two hands , so that's why it was my favorite.

Q. How popular are you in your country? You're a star there? They recognize and stop you in the street, or not yet?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, definitely people know me, but they don't really stop and stalk you, because it's a little bit different mentality from anywhere else, like the States or any other countries.
Of course everybody congratulates and I get sometimes to the restaurant and they give me a nicer table or whatever. But, yeah, it's nice.
Especially after Miami, they been really putting me in almost all of the papers and on TV every time, so it's nice.

Q. Do they go also in personal and start talking about your family and things like that, what your parents were doing or things like that, or just concentrated on you?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: No, they actually went once no my parents apartment when any brother was sleeping. They catched [sic] him to give an interview, because my mom wasn't there and my father wasn't there and I wasn't there, so they had to find somebody.
So he was -- I'm like, Why would you do that? He's like, I don't know. They just woke me up and microphone right here, so I didn't know what to do.

Q. How old is he?

Q. Can you tell the name?

Q. Like Mirnyi?

Q. Who is the most popular athlete in Belarus?
VICTORIA AZARENKA: I have no idea. I think ice hockey players.

End of FastScripts

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