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August 29, 2010

Caroline Wozniacki


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What's it like being the favorite?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, I actually don't think about it. I'm just happy to be here. I'm happy to get to play on Tuesday, so it's exciting.

Q. How much did your finish here at the Open last year have to do with getting you off to such a great year this year in terms of confidence and what you've achieved?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, definitely the finals here last year gave me a lot of confidence and the belief that I could do it. You know, I just kept working hard and kept improving, and I'm really happy to be back.
Hopefully I can do well again this year.

Q. What do you feel like you've improved on, and what part of your game have you stepped up to reach this level now?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: I think my fitness definitely has improved. I think I improve little by little all the time, and I just -- you know, the serves and the returns are things that I work on all the time, and things that are important in the game now.

Q. To what degree do you rely on consistency and movement versus going for winners? What's the balance in your game in that regard?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, for me it's just about being smart. I mean, there's no sense going for the winners if there is no chance to go for the winner.
I play well from the baseline, I set up my shots to get a short ball, and then I go for the winner when I have the possibility.
For me it's about being smart. I move well. But I can play the rallies if I have to because I know I can hang in there. I'm fit and I run well, so, you know, it really depends on the opponent and who I'm playing and how I feel.

Q. How much of a concern is the toll on you physically of being in that many long rallies versus going for winners maybe earlier in points?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, I haven't had a problem so far, so I'm feeling good. I'm feeling good physically, as well. So I'm just happy.

Q. Are you playing as well now as you ever have? Do you feel as though your game is...
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Definitely I feel like I'm playing better and better. The last two weeks or actually four weeks have been great for me. I've been winning a lot of matches, so that's definitely something that brings up the confidence.
I'm feeling really good. It's tough, you know, to compare myself to one year ago, for example. But I definitely think that I've improved in many aspects.

Q. Are you happy playing so many weeks in a row? I mean, if you're here right through to the final you've been playing solidly for a month, won't you, by then?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Yeah, I am. I think that's a positive problem to have, that I play many matches. That means that I'm winning.
After Wimbledon I had five weeks off where I didn't play anything and just practiced, so that was a great feeling for me to get back on the match court and back in the match intensity.

Q. Did you not think at all it would have been better maybe not to have played at New Haven?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: No. I actually feel great. I feel good. I feel in good shape. I don't feel tired, so I'm really happy.

Q. What sort of an honer is it for you to be the No. 1 seed? How would you describe your reaction to that recognition?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, definitely that's a big thing for me. To be the No. 1 seed at a Grand Slam, that feels good.
But still, you know, to win the matches I still have to play well. I still have to win seven matches to win a Grand Slam, and that's not easy.

Q. What do you know about your opening opponent?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, actually I haven't thought too much about the match yet. I still have today and tomorrow to relax, and I play on Tuesday.
So until now, I just haven't given it too much thought. I just want to enjoy my wins the last couple of weeks, and then I'm going to prepare mentally, yeah, in a few days.

Q. Do you know who your first opponent is?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Yes, I know. Well, I know who I'm playing - and I think I've played her in the juniors, as well - but I haven't really thought about tactics or anything yet.

Q. When you think in terms of the mental approach to a Grand Slam, do you feel more prepared than ever to take that final step to being a Grand Slam champion? What do you feel you need that you didn't quite have last year?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Definitely that would be a dream. And to win a Grand Slam, that's definitely a goal. You know, it's still seven matches away, and it's tough because everyone wants to win.
It's about playing well at the right moments, taking your chances, having a bit of luck, everything. Everything just has to come together in these two weeks, and it's not easy.
So we will just have to see what's gonna happen.

Q. How does the US Open compare with the other Grand Slams?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: I really like being here. It definitely brings back good memories for me. Coming back here from last year, I just enjoy it. I think the crowd is amazing. It's a great atmosphere out there in the stadium.

Q. If you've seen the Roger Federer video that's the rage of the Internet, what are your thoughts about it?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Which one? I haven't seen it, actually, I think.

Q. Oh, it's where he knocks a can off somebody's head.
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Oh, I heard about it. I actually haven't seen it, but I heard about it.
Well, if he can do that, that's unbelievable. (Laughter.)

Q. Were you startled last year to finally wind up in the final, which no one had mentioned your name much before that?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Yeah, well, I don't think too much has changed since last year. I mean, of course people -- there are more people talking about my game and the way I play and everything.
But for me personally, I mean, still the same person. Still have the same team around me, same friends, everything. And I still just love playing tennis, so that's the great part. Hopefully I can be here for many more years.

Q. Can you point to a moment, a time, when it first sort of occurred to you that, Hey, I'm somebody who will one day win Grand Slam titles?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, I always believed in myself, and I always go into a tournament believing that I can win the tournament. You know, I always actually just take one match at a time. I don't really think too far ahead. I just go out on the court and do the best that I can and the things that I've done at practice, and we'll have to see how far I can go.
Hopefully, yeah, like you say, I can win some Grand Slam titles in the future.

Q. How does the No. 1 seed affect your confidence and the pressure on you, do you think?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: I don't think there's any pressure, because I think the pressure is when you're put on the spot and you don't feel like you belong there, don't think you deserve to be there. I think I deserve to be where I am and I think that I'm feeling comfortable there, so I'm just really excited and looking forward to play.

Q. What is it like for you back in your home country? How do people respond to you?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Well, a lot of people are supporting me and watching my matches and come up to me and congratulate me. It's a great feeling to know you have a whole nation behind you.

Q. Who were your favorite players growing up?
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Martina Hingis and Steffi Graf were my two favorite players. I mean, Steffi with her footwork, her slice was unbelievable, her forehand.
And then with Martina, she was so smart on the court. She wasn't this power hitter, but she just knew where to place the ball. She knew almost every shot, so that was what fascinated me about her.

End of FastScripts

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