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January 17, 2012

Samantha Stosur


S. CIRSTEA/S. Stosur
7‑6, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  What are your thoughts, Sam?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Oh, well, I mean, obviously extremely disappointed.  Certainly not the way that I wanted, not just this tournament but the whole summer together.
Yeah, there's not any other word for it but a total disappointment.

Q.  When did you feel like it was slipping away?  Was it the tiebreaker?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I mean, throughout the first set, obviously I got a break up twice, then lost serve straight after, then soon after I think after the first one.
I think it was one of those matches where I wasn't taking charge.  She was playing super aggressive.  She would either hit great balls, especially at the start, or could miss by a long way.
She hung in there and kept going for it and eventually got better and better.  I think she played a very, very good match.  You have to give credit where credit's due.
But I still think I didn't maybe step up.  Maybe I need to do that exact same thing back, whereas I was trying to maybe control what I was doing rather than, okay, this isn't working, and if she keeps going the way she is, she's going to win.  So maybe I need to try and step up and do the same kind of thing.

Q.  How much do the expectations play a part?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I don't know.  I mean, there's nothing probably more than my expectation.  I really, really wanted to do well here and over the summer.  I did everything I could to try and give myself a good opportunity.  It obviously didn't happen.
I think it's one of those things, of course I know what's out there, but at the end of the day it's what I think, the way I know I can play, the way I think I'm capable of playing.
Yeah, it's disappointing for sure.  I know that everyone was behind me.  It's more disappointing obviously that I don't get another chance to step out on court.

Q.  Is it almost a physical burden?  You looked tight in the shoulders.  Don't look like yourself.
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Yeah, I think for sure it affects you physically.  That's probably the easiest sign for the outside people to see.  Obviously I know what's going on inside.
But, yeah, physically I think it is easy to see that you tighten up, your shoulders do get tight, you don't hit through the ball.
When anyone's nervous, I think the first thing that goes is your footwork.  You don't move your feet as well.  Once that breaks down, it's easy for other things to start breaking down.
On the whole today, I don't think that was ‑‑ certainly not as bad as last week in Sydney.

Q.  What do you tell your fans when they ask, What happened in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Well, I don't know.  I mean, it's hard.  It's not through lack of trying or not wanting it or anything like that.  I mean, you can't pick the times that you want to play well.
Of course, I wanted to do very well here.  You want it to come right now.  I'm thankful that everyone was behind me.  I'm sure they will stay behind me.
That's sport.  Unfortunately you can't pick and choose when it's all going to happen for you.

Q.  When you are struggling, how many competing voices do you have in your head?  Your coach, your own views, people in the locker room.  How crowded does it get in there in terms of the advice?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I mean, I don't think that's necessarily a problem that was happening.  I obviously got a group of people around me.  I listen to those people probably more than anyone else.
Yeah, I think certain days there's certainly more things going through your head than other days.  It's obviously been a really tough month, a tough week leading into this.  You stay as positive as you can and do everything that you need to.  What you think is going to make the difference for the next match.
I tried whatever I could, but obviously came up against a player who played very well and I didn't play as well as I needed to.

Q.  Do you think there wasn't enough time to turn it around mentally after Sydney?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I don't know.  I don't know.  That's just the way it is.  It's not like there wasn't enough time.  You get a week.  I'm not going to say there wasn't enough time.  I don't know.  I couldn't have got any more time; put it that way.

Q.  When do you start to lose faith it will happen for you here?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I don't know.  The last few years I got beaten by players who definitely played better than me on the day.  Third, fourth rounds obviously aren't where you want to go, but certainly better than a first round.  All you can do is come back next year and keep trying.
Obviously, it's not hard to improve on a first‑round loss.  I got the rest of the year obviously.  Of course, like I said, I want to do better here.  But I can't think that, oh, because this month didn't go the way I wanted it to, the year is shot either.
It's January.  We have till the start of November to find form.  I'm sure within that period of time I definitely will play better and play the way I know I can.

Q.  What do you feel like doing over the next two weeks?  Getting back out there in the gym and ripping in or stepping away and having a bit of a break?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I don't know.  I haven't really decided what I'm going to do yet.  I'll probably take at least a few days off, maybe get away, try and not think about it, yeah, kind of forget about what's happened a little bit.
For sure I know I'll get back on the court, in the gym, do all the work I need to do to keep trying to get better, improve, be ready for the next tournaments.
It's not going to deter me from doing what I want to do.  If anything, it will probably spur me on to try even harder and do even more.

Q.  How anxious were you beforehand?  Did you wake up in the middle of the night worrying about it or were you quite calm?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  No, I don't have sleepless nights the night before I play or anything like that.  I thought I'd done what I could leading into the match and felt prepared.  I woke up this morning looking forward to going out there and playing, obviously trying to keep and improve from the last time you got out on court.  Had a good warmup, was ready to go.  That certainly wasn't an issue.

Q.  Will you pay attention to what's going on now that you're out of it?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  It's hard to avoid the tennis.  I love what I do.  I love the sport.  There's going to be some interest there at some point, I'm sure.  But I don't know if I'll watch too much tomorrow.

Q.  Yesterday, did you see anything of Tomic's match?  Did you hear what happened?  Did you read the press?  Was there more pressure on you in a way because of the enthusiasm that he created, you wanted to do the same?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I don't know if that created more pressure.  I think it was really exciting for Bernard.  That was a fantastic win from him, the comeback, two sets to love down, the way that the crowd was there.  It was awesome.
I was, yeah, very happy.  I'm not competing against Bernard.  We're in two different events.  I obviously wish him and whoever else all the best.  Of course I would have liked to have got through my first round and had all that, you know, part of it as well.  But obviously it didn't happen.

Q.  When you talk about needing to take control in a match, be more aggressive, work on the mental side, what can you do to turn that around?  That's not something you can hit the gym and go out and hit the court to improve.  What can you do to change that?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  I think it's a matter of telling yourself you got to do what you know you've got to do to play the way you can.  Obviously at certain times it's easier to do that than others.  When you're lacking a little bit of confidence, you haven't had too many match wins, that's the hardest time to do it.  At some point you have to push through those barriers and do it.
It didn't happen this time.  I've got another couple of weeks now till the next tournament.  I'll keep working on that.  I'm sure it will come back.  I'm not worried that it's not going to come back.  I know I'm going to do exactly what I need to do again.  You obviously want it today, not tomorrow.

Q.  This question may sound cruel, but when you get such a big disappointment like tonight, do you get close to crying or you make an effort not to?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Oh, I think you feel what you feel.  I'm probably very close to crying, having a really awful night.  But, you know, I think you feel what you feel, whether it's good or bad.  It's hard to suppress those emotions when it means so much to you.

Q.  There's been a trend of players on the women's side who win a Grand Slam having almost a hangover at the next one.  Do you feel that's a factor for you?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Yeah, I mean, we all saw what happened last year and now I've kind of gone through that same trend.  I don't know why.  Part of it is just that heightened expectation of wanting to do well, all that kind of thing.  At least for the other girls, it was tournaments straight after.  I struggled the couple weeks after the US Open and then finished well at The Championships, had a month off, then trained for a month.
I don't know.  Maybe it's a little bit different.  I don't know why it seems to be happening more often than not right now.  I'm sure if we could all change the way we've responded straight after winning a Grand Slam, we would have.

Q.  The other night on TV, your US Open final was on.  You played unbelievably well.  Reminded everyone how good you could play.  Coming back here, is it just trying too hard to show Australia how good you could play?  You were a different player today.
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Yeah, sure, I mean, I guess the US Open final, the way I played and everything, is the absolute pinnacle of where you want to get to.  Now I know that is possible.  That's maybe close to my top level or best level you can do.  You know that's up there and achievable.  You want to keep pushing for that.
Sometimes it's unrealistic to think you are going to play that well every single time.  That's kind of hard to deal with as well.  You know it's there, but why doesn't it happen over and over and over again?
You know, I don't know if you could say that you want it too much or you're trying too hard or anything like that.  But I know that I want it to happen.  I don't think it was from lack of trying that it didn't.

Q.  This morning, Jarmila was critical the way her game is perceived.  Having seen what she went through at Hopman Cup, do you get together with her and have a chat?  She's obviously struggling a bit.
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Yeah, I have no idea what she said or what she's thought about her summer.

Q.  People say she plays crap.  She can't win.  She hits 40 unforced errors.
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Of course, I can sympathize with her.  Similar situation I guess going out first round.  She's definitely capable of I'm sure playing better than what she has over the last month, as well.
You know, for her to say she can't win, I think we all know she can.  It's just a matter of when is it going to happen.  You have to put it all together when you really want to.
When we're at Fed Cup together, or the next time we see each other, we might talk about it.  We've probably both been in this similar situation before and got out of it.  You have to think that you're going to be able to get out of it again.

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