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February 18, 2012

Samantha Stosur


S. STOSUR/M. Bartoli
6‑3, 0‑0 (Ret.)

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  Did you sense anything, or was it a complete surprise when she pulled out?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  No, actually, I didn't notice that she started limping or that there was any kind of problem until she dropped the ball and started walking to the umpire.  It was pretty apparent there was something going on.  But up until that point, I had no idea.

Q.  How do you explain you're playing so well after your Australian swing, which didn't go up to your expectations?  Do you feel like a weight has lifted off your shoulders?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Yeah, I mean, I guess it is really pleasing your next tournament back‑‑ I mean, we had Fed Cup in there, but the next tour event back I've made a final after having a pretty dismal month in Australia.
You know, I did all the training, did all the preparation that I could have done for, you know, the leadup tournaments to Melbourne.  It just didn't click, didn't happen.
Sometimes that's the way it goes unfortunately, but I guess knowing that you've done all the work that you needed to do, it is eventually going to come and pay off.  I guess that's where I'm getting the rewards this week.

Q.  Even though you didn't get a full match, you must have been happy with the first set the way it went.  But then again, you had this momentum, and to have it end that way must have been a little bit disappointing.
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  You always want to win a match playing the full match out and winning match point.  So any player will always take it if you play a set or two sets, but of course in the nature of the sport, you want to be able to finish it.
Having said that, I thought I played a really good first set.  I thought both of us were playing really good, high quality.  From 3‑2 down in that first set down a break, was at a break back straightaway, and then really played really, really good tennis to clinch that set.  So I'm happy with the way that I played out there tonight.

Q.  You look more confident and comfortable on the court than last month.  Can you compare how big the difference you feel playing in Australia and other part of the world, pressure and attention‑wise?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Yeah, I mean, like I said before, I did everything I could have to prepare for Australia, and no doubt I was very tense and got nervous and just wasn't able to play and swing freely at the ball when I was out there playing, and, you know, I really paid the price for feeling like that.
Whereas this week I've tried to, yeah, stay relaxed, be a lot more loose.  I think when I'm able to be like that, my tennis just flows.  And then I want to hit a forehand, I can get out there and whack it.  My feet move better, and everything about my tennis is just better.
So no doubt, you know, that mental and the way you're feeling about your game can play a huge part in the results that you get.

Q.  In terms of dealing with Australia, you have to go back there and you're going to play again, I'm assuming, but what's your strategy or how do you overcome that added pressure, anxiety that comes with playing at home?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Well, I mean, I think this year was by far the worst I've handled it.  The year before and year before that was actually not too bad.  Maybe it came as a bit of a surprise to me how, you know, badly I did go.
But I've got 10 months to work that out and really work that out and know how to handle it.  I think, you know, part of it's just gonna be maturing a little bit more, you know, being a player, and I'm sure I'm gonna learn a lot from what's just happened this January for next.

Q.  Some people said the top two players right now have put the fitness of women's tennis to a new level.  You are a player of tougher condition yourself.  How do you comment on this?
SAMANTHA STOSUR:  Oh, I think for sure women's tennis is very physical now.  It has been the last few years.  If you're not strong and fit and fast, it's gonna be pretty hard for you to compete, I think, out here.
You know, you can go out and watch nearly any match, and the ball is being hit full pace nearly every single time.  You've got to be able to react and move out there.
I think, yeah, tennis is getting better and better quality because we are getting probably stronger and faster, and that's making for much better points and exciting matches.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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