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June 25, 2012

Venus Williams


E. VESNINA/V. Williams
6‑1, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:テつ Ladies and gentlemen, Venus Williams.テつ First question, please.

Q.テつ How frustrating has it been to be on court and not feel the rhythm you like to have?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, you know, first of all, I have to give credit to her.テつ She played well, made hardly any errors, and served very well.
Obviously, I would have liked to have won the match, but that didn't happen today.

Q.テつ As someone who has experienced the joys and thrills of winning here and walking off with those emotions, how would you describe what you're feeling today?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I've lost before, so I know how to deal with it.テつ You know, that's basically how I feel right now.テつ Simple as that.

Q.テつ Is it tough, though?テつ This is the place you've had your most success.テつ To find yourself out in the first round, how do you deal with it?テつ Your health, how are you feeling?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ You know, obviously I come into tournaments with a positive attitude, doing my best.テつ I don't really feel like talking about my health now.
So it is what it is.

Q.テつ It was quite sad seeing you walk back through the crowds.テつ How difficult was that walk for you?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Like I said, I've lost before.テつ Sometimes you win; there's times when you have to lose.テつ You know, that's pretty much what it was.

Q.テつ How would you assess your career now and the future of your career?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ For me right now, I'm just, you know, a couple of months into getting back on tour.テつ You know, life is challenging, but I'm always up for a challenge.
I feel like, you know, the tour will be around for a few more months this year, and I will just continue to try to improve my game.

Q.テつ And you think you can go on on the circuit for a good while?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Sure.テつ (Laughter.)

Q.テつ What was your energy level like today on the court?テつ How did you feel with the energy?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I did my best today.テつ You know, my opponent played well.

Q.テつ You said earlier this year that you came back earlier than you might have done normally because of the need to get rankings points to qualify for the Olympics.テつ Do you think in any way that you're paying for that now?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Gee whiz, that's a loaded question.テつ I'm really proud of my efforts to get my rankings up for the Olympics.テつ That's one of the toughest things I've ever done in my life.テつ So now I don't really feel that much pressure, to be honest.テつ I want to win.テつ But, you know, after going through that, that was hard, and, yeah, I definitely came back early.
Do I think I'm paying for it?テつ I can't say that because I don't really know.

Q.テつ Were you able to get enough work in between Roland Garros and here maybe practice‑wise, fitness‑wise, and do you feel like you had your rhythm back overall?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, I think‑‑ I mean, how much time was that?テつ I didn't last that long at the French.テつ You know, I think that I had enough time.テつ I had the same amount of time as everyone else, so no complaints in that department.

Q.テつ And rhythm‑wise?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I didn't have the best start.テつ I don't think that helped.テつ You know, she's been on the tour a while, so players like her, you know, they know how to hold on to a game, hold serve.テつ She played well.

Q.テつ Will we see Venus back at Wimbledon?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, at the Olympics you'll see me here.

Q.テつ Next year?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I'm planning on it.

Q.テつ You mention the Olympics.テつ What will this Olympic experience mean to you, and how do you look upon the Olympics in general?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Well, that's all I've fought for this whole year, so I hope that I can play well there.テつ For me it will just be an honor to be there, and try to capitalize on that moment.

Q.テつ In general, what are your thoughts on your Olympic experiences?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Oh, they're the time of my life, especially when I got to win.テつ Let's be honest.
But also being able to get to that point in my career has been amazing for me.

Q.テつ Given your Olympic ambitions that you clearly stated, what do we expect?テつ Do we see you before the Olympics?テつ Do you have a game plan formulated for how you're going to prepare for that?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I'm playing doubles here, so I'm going to really try to hone my doubles, do that, and then I'll go to the Olympics.テつ I don't think I'll play anything beforehand.

Q.テつ Just work out?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, just more workouts.

Q.テつ So many wonderful memories here at Wimbledon.テつ If you had to choose one, which would that be?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I would choose a lot of them.テつ I can't narrow it down.テつ They're all good times.テつ That's too tough, especially on the spot.

Q.テつ Obviously you've been very open that the Olympics was a major goal.テつ What is going to drive you after that?テつ You're 32, struggling, have a lot of other interests.
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Am I struggling?

Q.テつ A little bit.テつ No?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Am I?テつ I don't know.テつ Tell me what the struggle is.

Q.テつ To win matches?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ You think?
I don't know.テつ I just want you to be clear.テつ If you say I'm struggling, tell me how I should do better, you know.

Q.テつ I'm just asking what's going to drive you to stay with it after the Olympics.
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I feel like I am a great player.テつ I am a great player.テつ Unfortunately, I had a deal with circumstances that people don't normally have to deal with in this sport.
But I can't be discouraged by that, so I'm up for challenges.テつ I have great tennis in me.テつ I just need the opportunity.
There's no way I'm just going to sit down and give up just because I have a hard time the first five or six freakin'テつ tournaments back.
You know, that's just not me.

Q.テつ Would you consider this the hardest part of your career, five or six tournaments back, what you've had to go through the last year and a half or so off court?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I've been through a lot for years without knowing what I was going through.
It's all a culmination at the end of the day.テつ I just try to stay positive and focused on the tennis.テつ You know, not let anything get to me, like, you know, crazy questions.
But I'm tough, let me tell you, tough as nails.

Q.テつ Is the biggest victory to be back after all you've been through?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, totally.テつ Definitely a big victory to be back.テつ A lot of people wouldn't even have the opportunity to even come back, so I'm grateful for this opportunity.テつ With each day that passes, that means I have another chance.テつ If the sun comes up, I have a chance.
So I have to make good on that chance, prepare the best I possibly can, see what that day brings, continue being positive, continue figuring out how to live my life and figure out how to play sport in this life.

Q.テつ A lot of people in this sport have to deal with injuries and illnesses.テつ Is there anybody in the past that has been inspirational how they've been able to fight back from something?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Of course Serena Williams has been inspirational.テつ She's fought back near‑death experiences ‑ several.テつ I'm very motivated by her and nothing getting her down and everything that she's been through that no one even knows about.テつ That's definitely inspirational, that in itself.
There's been a lot of people in this world that fought back from the brink.テつ I don't have time to feel sorry for myself because of everything that's going on.テつ I have to be positive.
I love this sport.テつ I feel like I can play well and I'm not going to give up on that.

Q.テつ Where do you find all this positivity that you talk about?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I don't have time to be negative.テつ I don't know if you've had any negative experience, but it's not fun.テつ I like to use the same time to be positive because it feels a whole lot better.テつ And also it's easier to be productive when you're positive, so that's what I work on.

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