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February 16, 2010

Venus Williams


V. WILLIAMS/S. Lisicki
6-2, 6-3

Q. How's Howie?

Q. How's Howie?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Oh, he's happy. He's just hopefully thinking about me.

Q. I guess it's easy to slip up at the start of the tournament when conditions are different. Two players have found it a little difficult here. So that was solid for you under these circumstances?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah. I mean, I haven't played a match in a couple of weeks. So the first set was so quick, just not a lot of rallies. You know, she was really going for it and playing aggressively, so I definitely was able to get a feel after the first set for what she was doing.
She was playing -- everyone's playing well. Especially against the top players. They come out and go for broke, so it's not always easy to win the matches. You have to be on every single match. You know, you can't take it for granted.

Q. Did it give you enough feel for what it's like playing here this year on the Centre Court given the way they played?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Absolutely. I'm not necessarily a real feel player, I'm an aggressive player. So I don't need to have a feel and a touch. All of those are nuisances of the game, obviously. But my game's about being aggressive, so I go for it.

Q. You obviously have got more than enough ability to win really big titles, majors, by peaking at the right time. But is it still important to keep a hold on some of the other titles too?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, I like winning. And this is, you know, the place everyone wants to be is these big tournaments. So I don't take it for granted. Any time I lose a game, obviously, it's a wake-up call. Hey, you're losing a game. So I have a desire every time I walk out on court.

Q. And hanging on to a title like this has some value, does it?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I mean, I'm not willing to hang on to anything. I'm all about getting the new thing. So I don't have that mentality, Oh, my God, I have to defend. Fortunately, I've never thought that like that. So it definitely takes a lot of pressure off me, I guess. I'm just here to get another title.

Q. Is there anywhere you haven't won that you'd like to have won outside of a slam?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I don't know. I mean, I feel like I've won almost every tournament (laughing). So that's a good feeling. I guess I can say, you know, I did it. But I just like to win again. It's such a nice feeling and to bring the trophy home.
My house is packed full of trophies. Between Serena and I, it's like a legendary house. They're like everywhere. We're trying to build new cases for them. It's awesome.

Q. How many do you think you've got between you?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I don't know. Between singles and doubles, I'm sure over 100.

Q. Who cleans them?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Well, we have some help with that. Our first trophies are at our dad's house. So the first U.S. Open and all of those. He has those.

Q. Does he clean them?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I tried to sneak them out once. He didn't like it, so I figured I'll let him have it. No, he's not, but they're safe.

Q. Do you have any pictures in your house? Paintings or special photos of yourself?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Not really. Not too many pictures up. We keep scrapbooks, but other than that, we don't really have that up there.

Q. Do you keep a diary?
VENUS WILLIAMS: No, I never did. I wish I would have. But I never was that kind of girl. I wasn't a girly-girl, you know.

Q. Do you sort of keep it in your head that with Serena not here, and Safina not here, and Clistjers and Sharapova not coming, that the tournament actually depends on you rather a lot to promote itself? Are you conscious of that?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I don't think that way at all. This tournament has done so well with making it not only a tennis event but also a social event. People love the tournament between the men's and the women's.
I think in the case of this tournament, they've done a really good job promoting. People look forward to February and having tennis here.

Q. This is a difficult question, but are you also pleased that the problems of last year about which you spoke rather eloquently are now behind the tournament?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Absolutely. Definitely. I think the day we're all people despite what the borders may say. I'm glad things are going well this year. Thank you.

End of FastScripts

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