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January 14, 2010

Serena Williams


3-6, 7-5, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. So first time in the final here.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I've never been here in the final?

Q. Apparently not. Semifinals about four times.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, really? Okay.

Q. What do you think about that?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I was lucky to get through today, for sure. You know, I was just trying to play my game and do the best that I could. I didn't do so well. I hit I don't know how many errors today, but I finally made a couple shots.

Q. That fight you've got and that mental toughness, is that what sets you apart from all of other women on the tour, do you think, that when it gets close you can lift a notch?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, you know, I'm just -- I think I'm extra mentally tough. I feel like that's definitely one of my strengths. It's something that I have always had since Sydney in '98 at White City. So I think that's where it all started.
Yeah, I definitely think that it's important to have a mental game.

Q. Obviously there was a situation where Rezai served for the match in the second set and lost her serve, and then you sort of came back from there. When you see less-experienced players get into that situation, do you see them mentally start to worry or start to think about winning? Does that happen against you often, people losing their way?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I don't think she lost her way at all. I just think at that point I lifted my game. I thought she did really well. I felt like I literally lifted my game at that point, because I knew I was gonna be headed to Melbourne if I didn't. I kept thinking, I want to get a little more practice, and I'd hate for it to end now.
I feel like she's had tons of -- she's won a few titles and had tons of time to get used to pressure situations. She's beaten a lot of top players, so I don't that had anything to do with it.

Q. She said she started to think about that.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Oh, really? Definitely didn't feel like that, because she was serving. I just hit some winners. I definitely lifted up my game.

Q. Seemed to be getting a bit frustrated with yourself on the court today.
SERENA WILLIAMS: No, I actually wasn't that frustrated. I just mishit so many balls today and made a lot of errors. You know, I just was like -- I had a little screaming match out there a couple times. But it was cool. I thought it was entertaining maybe. (Laughter.)

Q. Your opponent called her coach to the court a couple times. Have you ever called for a coach?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I did when the coaching first came out. I thought, Okay these girls are gonna call for their coach and I don't want them to have an advantage, so I would call for my dad.
But for me, tennis, what sets us apart from other sports is just you out there against your opponent. I like that. I like the fact that if I'm losing -- like today I was losing really bad. I had to figure out a way to come back.
That's what I like about tennis. I think it's the only sport that you can -- well at least that you used to be able to do that. I like to keep that purity about it.

Q. Do you feel like it would be a slight sign of weakness to do that, or not?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I feel like we're having a one-on-one. You guys have to join in.
Maybe subconsciously I would feel like, Okay, when they call for their coach I'm thinking, I got 'em now. That's how I feel, so maybe that's one of the reasons I don't call for my coach, or don't sign up for the coaching.
I do sign up sometimes if Venus is around and she's not playing. I'll have her as my coach because it's fun. Other than that, I don't do it.

Q. Do you talk about tennis with Venus when she comes in during a match?
SERENA WILLIAMS: I remember one time she came out and we definitely talked about tennis. If I'm gonna call a coach out, I'm gonna definitely need 'em. So I remember we definitely talked about tennis. It was comforting, and I like to see her side of things. She's an extremely smart player.
THE MODERATOR: Any other questions?
SERENA WILLIAMS: Go ahead, since you're the only one that wants to ask questions.

Q. No, I'm good.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Okay. Thank you.

End of FastScripts

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