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March 14, 2012

Angelique Kerber


6‑4, 6‑2

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  So you had had trouble against her in the past and kinda turned it around.  Do you just want to talk about the match and how you thought you played.
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah.  I mean, I felt very good today out there and I start very well, but she was playing also very tough.  I just tried to move very good and hit the balls deep in the court and also play aggressive my tennis, focus on me.
Yeah, I'm happy that I'm in the semis now.

Q.  With her, sometimes she can play great and then not so great.  It can be hard to keep concentration.
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, that's true.  I mean, I tried to be focused the whole game and every point until the last point, because I know you need to play the last point.
I also played the last two games of the last two matches.  I had match point down, so I was knowing that I need to be focused on the last point.

Q.  Is this one of your very best career wins, you think?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Um, yeah, one of my best for sure.
I mean, it's a great tournament here.  It's one of my favorite tournaments.  I'm very happy to be now in the semis and such a big tournament, so, yeah.

Q.  You've now made the semifinals at your last three tournaments in the U.S.  Is there something about playing here that brings out your best tennis, do you think?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, I mean, I like the U.S. very much, and I feel good here.  So maybe that's why.

Q.  How do you think about the match with Azarenka?  What are you going to do to change the momentum, because she's beaten a lot of Germans?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, I know, and now I'm the third one.  But, yeah, I hope we will play better than the other ones.
Yeah, I have nothing to lose in the next match, so I will go out there, try to play really my tennis and focus on me like today, enjoy it, and, yeah, try to beat her, of course.

Q.  Could you take any advice from, say, Julia or someone that's played her?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, for sure.  I mean, I think I will talk to them tomorrow and we will see what she will tell me.

Q.  Li Na mentioned that she was quite impressed with your defense tonight, and said you have played a number of times.  Is that your foot speed of being able to go back and forth?  Is it because you anticipate the ball well?  How do you chalk up your ability to play really strong defense?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, I mean, I was practicing a lot in my offseason to my footwork, so maybe that's why I'm a little bit better definitely like maybe some months ago.
So, yeah, that's why.

Q.  In Cincinnati last year, Andrea Petkovic was talking about you, and she said‑‑ oh, you heard about this?

Q.  She's gonna be top 30, top 20.  Now you're even ahead of that.  Is that something you expected, everything for to come together for you so quickly, as well?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  I mean, I was expecting this, but not so quickly.  After Wimbledon last year I had a lot of weeks off and withdraw from all the tournaments and, yeah, try to practice on my game.
Then I played the US Open, and I mean, I was not expected it so quickly.  But I'm very happy.  (Smiling.)

Q.  Why didn't you expect it so quickly?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Um, because I was thinking that the whole practicing what I was practice needs a little bit time to take it on the match.
Because it's not same on the practice court and on the match, so that's why I'm not expecting this so quickly.

Q.  How long did it take you to actually take the things from the practice court and believe that you could use them in matches?  Because in practice sometimes it's easy to hit certain shots, but then you get in matches and you go back to how you were playing before, no?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  That's true.  Yeah, first I believe it in NewYork.  I played that last semifinals, and after this I had a lot of confidence.  But then at the US Open, I mean, I beat a lot of good players, and, yeah, I start to believe in me.

Q.  You said before that this was one of your biggest wins but maybe not the biggest win of your career.  What's kind of the number one match that sticks out into your mind?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  I think now the one with ‑‑ that I played against Maria Sharapova.  That was, I don't know, a special win for me.

Q.  You're 24, which is young, but for tennis not so young.  So when you were 17 or 18, would you have expected to get to this point faster?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, for sure.  I make a lot of pressure on me, myself, and I think that's why‑‑ yeah, that was the reason why it's not working, actually.
Now I'm 24, and, yeah, I mean, it's not too old.  Now I make not so pressure on me.  I mean, I just try to focus on me and give my best on the court, try to win, of course.
But I mean, yeah, my goal is to give my best on every match.

Q.  So pressure on you saying that you expected results?  Would you get angry with yourself or you get nervous in matches or what would happen?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Maybe both a little bit.  Also, I played a lot of good matches as I was younger, but I didn't win these matches.
And then I make the pressure, was angry to me, and the whole thing (smiling).

Q.  So it just rolls and rolls?

Q.  You have a new coach with you than was with you at the US Open.
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  The coach, yeah.

Q.  Is he going to stay with you?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yes, this coach is my travel coach, actually, and the coach at the US Open was the coach from the academy where I was practicing in Germany, but I also practice with him in Germany.

Q.  What is his name?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  This one?  Torben Beltz.

Q.  Do you prefer to play the matches at this tournament day matches or night matches?

Q.  Do you get to talk to Andrea Petkovic very much now?  She's obviously been off the tour for a little bit rehabbing.
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, I saw her like two weeks before I come here, but she felt better.  She's‑‑ yeah, I think she will come back in some weeks, so...

Q.  Next Grand Slam will be Roland Garros.  Do you have great memories in Roland Garros?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  I mean, it's next tough tournament, big one, and next Grand Slam.
I like Paris, also.  I mean, the last tournament I won, so I had good victories and also good memories, so, yeah, we will see.

Q.  Your name is pronounced a lot like the Care Bears.  Do you ever watch that TV show when that was on?

Q.  You never heard of the Care Bears?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  No.  No, I never heard about it.

Q.  The practice in between Wimbledon and Dallas, specifically what were you doing?  Was it just more aggressive or was it a specific type of shot or court positioning or what was it?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  No, the special thing what I was working like a few weeks it was the fitness, so I really had every time like three, four, maybe five hours' fitness and played just once tennis.  So that was...

Q.  So you felt like you needed to get faster?

Q.  To be able to win three‑set matches?
ANGELIQUE KERBER:  Yeah, that was.

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