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May 7, 2009

Dinara Safina


D. SAFINA/M. Martinez Sanchez
4-6, 6-3, 6-0

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. (Through translation.) Was it difficult to beat her?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, you could see by the score it wasn't easy. She's a tough opponent to play. She serves good. There is not many players who plays the same way she plays, so of course it's always difficult to play somebody, especially because she's lefty and great volleys and great serve.
So it made -- she complicated pretty much the game. She could have won this match.

Q. (Through translation.) If tomorrow goes well for you, you could even reach the final on Saturday. I noticed that in the past three finals you lost, so do you feel ready now for a new final? Do you think you could go all the way this time?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, that's why, you know, you get to the final, to have another chance to win. So, I mean, last year I won all the -- I lost maybe only two finals, and this year it's different. You know, every time it's different.
I lost to Kuzy now last week, but she's in a great shape and she's playing great. So it's not that I lost to somebody bad. It's nothing to worry about. There is always another chance.

Q. She seemed to be giving you a lot of problems with the variety of her match. She did a lot of different things with slices, dropshots, serve and volleying. Can you explain how a match can change so dramatically from 3-1 to her and breakpoints in the second set to you running away with it?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, I mean, first set, again, I was not -- I had a plan to go for my shots, to hit them, and again, it was all about her.
At 3-1, I changed. Okay, likely I would say I won my service game because I been struggling the whole time holding it. Since then, we changed the sides and I hit the returns and I just went a little bit on the side and she could not catch them anymore.
So it was just all about me. Because I always had the chance to do something with the return, but just I wasn't doing it. Good that I did it at the end.

Q. What was the difference on your serve, as well? You lost four of the first seven service games, and then I think it was ten or twelve double faults. After that you seemed to be fine on your serve.
DINARA SAFINA: If you see me serving on the practice, I mean, it's no way that I will serve double fault. It's just going -- I guess it's in my mind. I don't know, I was going away from my serves.
Before the serve was already I think in the fence trying to catch the return. So I was not finishing the serve, and this was the result. I was not taking one serve at a time. I was already thinking in the future, what I'm gonna do with the next ball, instead of, okay, first is the serve and then is the second ball.

Q. (Through translation.) What's your opinion about the current situation of women's tennis in the world? Since the 20th of April you've been No. 1. There's been alternating No. 1s. Do you think you can now stay for a long time?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, I will do the best as possible to stay as long as I can. That's why, you know, I fight like crazy, I would say, in the matches to win them.

Q. You called for the trainer during the second set. What was the problem with your foot?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, in the first single match I fall down on the court and I twisted my ankle. It was fine, but as I was playing singles, doubles, and yesterday I played again three hours singles and then I played two hours doubles.
I just started to play, and already on the warm up it started just being painful whenever I had to go down on this leg. Then it was just getting worse and worse. I mean, I have a big tournament coming up, so I had to call for the trainer at least that it doesn't get even worst from that. That they could tape me and they could block the movement.

Q. So it was your ankle not your foot?
DINARA SAFINA: No, my ankle.

Q. The last two days you've spent more than seven hours on the court. Doesn't it kind of beg the question, why are you playing the doubles? Isn't that a bit too much? Do you not risk getting bit to too tired?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, I haven't been playing doubles for a long time. Suddenly I decided to play, of course, on the wrong moment, when I'm playing on clay court when the matches are not less than one hour.
I don't know. I just wanted to have fun and play. What can I do? One wrong decision.

Q. (Through translation.) When you win, do you also find it important to get your brother's approval? Do you kind of, in away, do it for his approval, or for yourself?
DINARA SAFINA: I'm playing for myself. (Laughter.)

Q. Do you have arguments as to who is better?
DINARA SAFINA: Well, he has two Grand Slams, so...

Q. So he wins the argument.
DINARA SAFINA: At the moment, yeah, he's in front of me.

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