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August 14, 2009

Kim Clijsters


D. SAFINA/K. Clijsters
6-2, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You had your chances today.
KIM CLIJSTERS: In the second set I did. You know, I really felt like, yeah, Dinara today played some of her best tennis that I've seen of her, even definitely from the last few matches that I played against her. I think it was by far the best she's ever played against me.
She doesn't give you the opportunity to just step in and, you know, put the pressure on her. I think she hits the ball extremely deep and down the middle of the court. So, you know, it's a very good tactic game plan that she's developed in the last few years. You know, obviously it's worked. It's put her in the best spot up there.
Like I said, she has such a different game than a lot of girls out there. I kind of feel like I want to go out there right now and do it all over again and try to figure out a few things out there. But obviously that's not possible.

Q. What's the main emotion there? You did have chances, but are you pleased? Frustrated?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I'm definitely pleased with the level that I've had and that I got to in these four matches. Obviously today, yeah, I would have liked to, maybe looking back at it now, maybe would have liked to try a few different things. Overall, I'm very happy and satisfied with the way that everything has been.
But, yeah, in the second set I had chances. Would have been nice if I could have maybe stepped it up there and got into a third set.

Q. What was the issue in the first set with your service game? You got broken three times, which is really uncharacteristic of you.
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, like I said, I held serve first game, and from then on was obviously, I think the north side it is, you're serving in the sun all the time. But again, you know -- and that's something that you don't see a lot these days in women's tennis. She's so far behind the baseline with that serve. The only thing you can try to do is just try to place the ball really well and go out and try to get the ball away from her.
Hitting those power serves against her don't make any sense because the balls come back deeper. I was trying to mix it up a little bit, which not having played for a while brings you a little bit out of that comfort zone.
Again, all the credit to her. She really made it tough for me out there. I tried it mix it up a little bit, and obviously -- I knew before the match her forehand has always been her weaker side, but she doesn't really give you the opportunity anymore to attack that shot, because she's really worked out a game plan that involves a lot of her backhands.
From the minute she gets the shot into her forehand she tries to go down the line, so, you know, you have to go back crosscourt again. Like I said, before, she has really worked out a really good game plan for herself. Looks like she's found what kind of player she is.
In the past, you could kind of doubt that she was really into her game. I think she's really figured it out now.

Q. What you did tell yourself mentally to get back into the match?
KIM CLIJSTERS: You know, when a first set like that happens, the only thing you can try to do is take a few things out of it, take the good things out of it and try to remember the things she was really good at and what you have to improve on and just start from there.
That's what I tried. There were a few key points where I had 40-Love I think on one of my service games. If I could have held serve there, it could have been a completely different set.
Again, those are -- that's why I'm here. Just trying to get used to those kind of situations again, and maybe taking a few more risks at 40-Love, going for that serve a little bit more, or maybe come in a little bit. Just try to mix it up a little bit.
I have to say that although after the match when I was running out there talking to my coach, I didn't feel like there was that much different I could have done out there today. I think she played so solidly.
Just looking back, I hit a lot of unforced errors, but I think I didn't have the amount of winners I would have liked to have. I just didn't have any opportunities to hit winners because everything was so deep. I kind of felt like my upper body was always leaning backwards because the balls were jumping up high today.
Whenever you're out there, you always try to look for solutions that can help you to win.

Q. She said give you three months and you'll be back to where you were before you left. Would you agree with that assessment?
KIM CLIJSTERS: I don't know. I mean, we'll see. You know, I'm gonna just try to keep working on everything that I have to do out there on the court to keep improving and to still work on a few things that I want to see differently, or things that I felt bothered me throughout these last few matches.
Just try to stay focused on what I have to do and not worry too much about what people are expecting from me and where they see me at in a couple of months or whatever. That's not really my goal. I'm not really setting my mind on, Okay, in two months I want to be there or there. I'll just take each day at a time and try to be as professional as possible whenever I'm playing and whenever I'm at a tournament, and then we'll see what happens.
Obviously so far it's worked. I've had some really good results, and I feel like my level here has risen. There's still a lot of things to work on. I need to keep working on the good things as well.

Q. When you saw the potential draw, what were your expectations?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Well, I have to say that's something that I still do. I only look at the first round.

Q. Really?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah. That's been one of my biggest -- yeah, I guess superstitions in that way. I look at my first round, and I don't really just see from there.
Obviously I think I only like a couple times, like stepping here, or in the past like when I did the press conference after my match, I knew, okay, who was my next opponent.
Maybe it's hard to believe, but it really is like that. I really try to block any other maybe matches out of it. Just because now, I mean -- and especially here. Because Bartoli, it was a tough match. I didn't really want to worry about whoever was in the second or third round just because, yeah, it didn't matter yet.

Q. What goals have you set for the rest of year for yourself?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, you know, my goals still haven't changed. Although I won a few matches here, I'm still gonna try to get as many matches as possible under my belt. And matches like today I think you probably learn more from than like in the beginning of the week. This was a really important match for me.
Like I said, I kind of feel like I want to go out there and replay it today and just see if I can play better.

Q. When you quit, Facebook was just about starting up, Tweeting was nothing. Now you're busy doing both. What's that like?
KIM CLIJSTERS: It is. I mean, I actually started Tweeting when a couple of Brian's basketball friends in Antwerp where were there. I started going on there because, you know, it was just a lot of fun following them, looking at what they were doing. Then you kind of get hooked on music, celebrities, whatever. I was just following. It's fun. On your BlackBerry us get them.
Yeah, also with the Facebook, it's for me a perfect opportunity for me to stay in touch with my friends. Obviously it's cheap. You don't have to worry about making those phone calls every week to catch up. So it's amazing. I have to say, I am not good at it at all. I'm not good with the computer.
But it's, yeah, fun, I think. Also for my family members to just send some pictures of Jada and stuff like that. It's a very good way to stay in touch with family and friends. I like it.

Q. How has becoming a mom changed your career and focus on everything? I mean, balancing work, life issues, that type of thing, how does that work?
KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, I mean, it's very -- you know, I think the amount of time that I put into my tennis is shorter, but the quality an a lot higher, I think. I think I that's something that has changes, yeah, over the last year and a half or so.
I think you really have to. I mean, even if I wasn't playing tennis and just being at home, you have to plan -- I've become a much bigger planner. I was a no planner. I was just, let's go with the flow and see what happens.
Obviously when you become a mother and a wife obviously, you know, you have a family and you plan things. I think in a way that's also good. It helps.
Yeah, it makes things easier. You feel like with a child you have to plan things. Yeah.

End of FastScripts

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