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June 25, 2010

Venus Williams


V. WILLIAMS/A. Kleybanova
6-4, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Good afternoon, everyone. Venus Williams for you.

Q. Would you say that game today was a tad bit tough?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, there were definitely some games that were really back and forth. She was competing really well. I was competing well. I think we both served pretty good today.
So, I mean, there was some games that, you know, went close. But thankfully I got most of them.

Q. You get down a break early. Does that faze you at all or do you figure, I'll get it back?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I mean, as soon as that break kind of happens, I just try to get it right back and not delay and not really make that lead any bigger or hopefully not let the person feel any more comfortable against me, you know.
But, so, like today I was very happy to get the break back.

Q. When you come back here year after year, having won it 10 years ago, do you start thinking, I'm getting older, or when you return is it just the same as every year?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah, definitely getting older. I definitely don't want the alternative. And, uhm, you know, it's wonderful obviously to come back to this event, and even better to come back playing great tennis. So I have no complaints.

Q. What do you know about Jarmila Groth?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I played her before when she had a different last name. It's been a while. But I know that she definitely likes to go out there and hit the ball hard. She's talented. I think she's been playing well this year.

Q. Justine and Kim both won their matches today, so they'll face each other next. What are your thoughts about the similarities and differences between them and that matchup?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I mean, I think they're both very athletic. But as far as that, I think they play different games.

Q. Can you describe the differences and what you think makes their matchup so compelling?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Obviously because they're Belgian, I think that makes it compelling because, you know, they're two of the best players from Belgium. So, I mean, I think going against each other from such a small country makes it compelling.

Q. Do you sometimes slap yourself and say, I'm still here, I'm No. 2, my sister is No. 1?
VENUS WILLIAMS: No, not really, because I work really hard year in and year out. If I was just relaxing, then I probably would be pretty surprised if I was here. But other than that, I'm just blessed to be, you know, healthy enough and strong enough and still talented enough to play.
So, you know, people are playing longer these days. They don't give it up too quickly anymore. If they do give it up, they come back and keep winning.

Q. If you were a fan, which ticket would you like to have, the Monday here at Wimbledon or the Saturday at the US Open?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Monday at Wimbledon.

Q. Monday at Wimbledon?

Q. Why?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Because it's Wimbledon. The US Open is amazing. It's obviously where I'm from. But Wimbledon's where it all started. So you kind of got to hit Wimbledon before you get to the Open.

Q. The whole fourth round is that day. Is it the variety of the matches? You like the tradition of the tournament? As a fan, why do you choose that ticket?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Because it's Wimbledon. So that explains it.

Q. Obviously there's so much conversation and interest in the Isner-Mahut match. What was it like in the locker rooms? Did you and the people you were talking to and your sister follow it and discuss it?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Yeah. I don't know if I was in the locker room that much, but I think basically the impossible happened. I don't know when or how the impossible will ever happen again. It's kind of a shame it wasn't like deeper into the event.
So who would have thought? You could see Isner serving that crazy, but who would have thought that Mahut would have come out and performed that well.
It's a shame that he didn't have a couple more days to recover.

Q. What do you have to do to dial in at this stage? Get serious, going gets tough?
VENUS WILLIAMS: I'm serious. These players I'm playing against, I definitely feel I'm holding them at bay. They come out and play well, play with really nothing to lose. These days, in men's or women's, you can't take anything for granted. You have to go out there and play a hundred percent.
Obviously, the deeper into the draw you get, the more experienced most likely the players you're going to play, the better they're going to be able to handle the pressure or better player they might be. That's the difference, most likely.

Q. Do you feel much pressure at this point in the tournament?
VENUS WILLIAMS: Uhm, I mean, that's part of sports, pressure. It's just knowing how to deal with it. If there was no pressure, there wouldn't be the glory either.
I take it all in stride. It all comes together.

Q. Does anyone out there worry you?
VENUS WILLIAMS: No, I don't think that way. I just really focus on what's at hand. Really I try to execute my game. And I feel if I do that, then things are going to go pretty well. Thank you, guys.

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