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March 19, 2011

Sania Mirza

Elena Vesnina


6-0, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions for your doubles champions.

Q. What brought the two of you together as partners this year?
ELENA VESNINA: I started to play this year with Vera Zvonareva. We were playing last year together. But Vera, she's in top 10 right now; she's concentrating more on singles.
In Australia I talked with Sania that probably it would be good to try to play together, because actually we were trying to ask each other...
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, we just never got to playing.
ELENA VESNINA: Never got to play. We decided do you want to play in Dubai and see how it goes.
ELENA VESNINA: Dubai and Doha. We tried there. It works fine. I really like to play with Sania. For the first match, like you could see that it was a team already.

Q. Is it almost like asking for a date? A doubles partnership, I mean, how is it normally thrown together?
ELENA VESNINA: It's hard, because...
SANIA MIRZA: I mean, we know each other since we were 12, I think, right? So it's not really a date. (Laughter.)

Q. Let's clarify that. In terms of I want to ask this person but I'm kind of hesitant, because what if they say no or something like that.
SANIA MIRZA: If you say no, you say no. But the fact is that I think when you have a friendship, honestly, it's different. You have a different relationship. You just ask if you want to play or whatever.
Actually we weren't even supposed to play this, because initially I was wasn't even supposed to play Indian Wells. So everything was just falling into place. We played Dubai, and then she was supposed to play with Vera in Doha. She got sick. We played Doha, two made quarters, and this was our third week together. We decided to play in Europe.
I mean, you know, we're planning to play for the rest of the year at the moment. Hopefully we get better as a team. That's it. I mean, that's simple. No one takes offense if you say no or anything like that.
ELENA VESNINA: No, it's like a business. It's like working.

Q. Does it just click, though? I mean, you guys have known each other, but in other circumstances people just get thrown together.
SANIA MIRZA: Different for different people. I think it's different for different people. I mean, I think like -- I hear men talking more about, Oh, we just started playing together. We'll take a few weeks.
I don't think women -- because I think women, there are not as many only doubles players as there are in men, you know. So in women everyone kind of plays, and then there is only two or three fixed teams. Everyone is kind of swapping around all the time.
SANIA MIRZA: I think we're pretty much used to it. I think we play different to men. That's why maybe it takes the men a longer time to play, like get to know each other.

Q. When did you guys decide to play the rest of the year? When did you come to that decision?
SANIA MIRZA: Actually after Doha. After Doha already, because I think it's not about one tournament or two tournaments. You know, it's a partnership. If you want to build on it, you have to play a lot.
I mean, there are tournaments we lose first round, but it's about sticking together. Obviously the aim is for championships, you know, to play together.
ELENA VESNINA: For every team.
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, for every team.
ELENA VESNINA: But we don't forget about singles, also. We're talking, Which tournament are you gonna play? Which is better for you to increase your ranking a little bit?
Of course we're thinking about singles and doubles together, so we're working like a team.
SANIA MIRZA: There will be tournaments we won't play together because we probably won't be at the same tournaments. But that's fine, I guess.

Q. What was the injury at the beginning of the tournament?
ELENA VESNINA: My arm. I'm telling you, it was like -- I was like 99% thinking to not play, because it was really bad, trust me. I mean, it was really bad.
Sania, she was like so confident. I came to her, I was like, Sania, I don't want you to lose the tournament. I want you to play good here. She was like, No, no, no. Keep playing. You'll see. It will be fine.
SANIA MIRZA: I had a wrist injury for two-and-a-half years, so...
ELENA VESNINA: She knows everything. She was giving me so much advice about that.
SANIA MIRZA: I struggled with that and finally I'm healthy now, so I kind of know most about wrists now, like what's dangerous and what's not.
And what she was saying, you know, I said, If you want to pull out, we will pull out. It's no big deal. Doubles is not really what we do only. We play singles as well.
But her wrist just kept feeling better, I think.
ELENA VESNINA: Every day she was asking in the morning, How's your wrist? How's your wrist? It's fine. I mean, it's fine. It's getting better.

Q. Does doubles help you guys in singles?
ELENA VESNINA: It's giving you confidence also. Like to win such a big event here in Indian Wells is just amazing. Of course it should give us some confidence.
SANIA MIRZA: Yeah, I think it improves certain areas of your game which you don't really use that much in singles, you're not confident to use. Like, I mean, at the net probably you'll see a lot more doubles -- people who perform better in doubles, they go into singles and they try and go to the net more, or, you know, use certain serves more.
SANIA MIRZA: Stuff like that. So to me, it's always helped me. I guess I'm Indian, and doubles comes more naturally to me. (Laughter.)
You know, considering we have...
ELENA VESNINA: She was born with that already.
SANIA MIRZA: Everyone makes fun of me. They're like, Oh, you're Indian. You know how to play doubles. (Laughter.) So it's like... (Laughing.)
ELENA VESNINA: I don't know, I'm Russian.
SANIA MIRZA: I'm joking. I mean, in doubles you move less and it's not as physically exerting, as well. So you can play -- you can play every day or every other day and you're fine.
We can still have proper practices for singles, like we were practicing on the off days or more than two hours at a stretch, because we want to keep the singles going, as well.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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