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September 5, 2012

Serena Williams


S. WILLIAMS/A. Ivanovic
6‑1, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  You said a little bit on court that you were emotional seeing Andy walk off.  Did you get a little teary eyed like everybody else in the place?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, for sure.  It's the end of a great player, a legendary player.  Definitely was upstairs thinking, Gosh, last time this happened was Andre Agassi.  How many more of these do I have to sit through?  It was great.

Q.  Were you here when Andre lost?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, I was.  Same position, gym, looking.  So it was ‑‑yeah.

Q.  Any thoughts on that 23‑game consecutive winning streak?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Me?  I lost not too long ago.  I lost in Cincinnati.  My streak...

Q.  I'm talking about the games.

Q.  Not matches, but games.  That was a pretty good run here.
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Was it?  I don't know.  I don't keep up with those stats.

Q.  How well did you play tonight?  Looked like you were moving well.
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, I felt much better moving.  I was excited I'm moving faster.  Feels good.  I felt solid.
I felt like second set I could have stayed focused a little more, but she's played a little better also.  That's when it's really important to get refocused.

Q.  Was the court slippery when you sat down at the net?  Were you slipping?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  No, I was just trying to get the shot.  I don't know.  I don't think it was slippery.  It's actually more of a slippery hard court so you can slide on it.  You see a lot of players sliding.
But, I don't know why that happened.

Q.  They say Sasha prepared you by blasting shots at you on the practice court.  Talk about your training.
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I really just try to focus on my game pretty much.  Just trying to do the best that I can.  I lost focus again.  Gosh, okay.  Tonight's just ‑‑I'm losing focus on a lot.
But, yeah, he didn't blast too many balls.  I always try to focus on my game and then take that to the court.
I'm tired.

Q.  Being Italian I hope you don't wash our Sara Errani.  What do you think of her game?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  She's playing well.  I mean, finals of Roland Garros and now semis here, potential finals.  I can't underestimate her.  It's not by luck she's been doing so well.  We will have to see.

Q.  Her serve is very weak, and with your return should be not a big problem unless the rally goes on and on.  What do you think?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  So you saying if we get in a long rally I'm going to lose?  (Laughter.)  What's that about?  You want to take me right now?  (Laughter.)
We'll see.

Q.  You don't agree?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  You challenged me.

Q.  Any karaoke this week, or has it been all business?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  No, it's been all business, all go to bed, tennis, hotel, hotel, tennis, tennis, hotel.

Q.  Sometimes commentators, they will talk about how you practice your serves a lot more than the average player; and then sometimes people say, no, she didn't even go out there and practice all that much.  Do you think you practice your serve more than the average player?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I think I did when I was young.  My dad always had us hit a lot of serves.  I think sometimes ‑‑ like before I played Wimbledon I hit a lot of serves, tons and tons and tons of serves.
It definitely depends.  I think it depends on how I'm feeling or how I feel about certain shots.
It's a little bit of both.

Q.  How good does it feel to be at a stage of your career where you can win a quarterfinal of a Grand Slam in less than an hour to sort of chide yourself for not having enough focus after the match?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Gosh, that does sound pretty bad, huh?  I didn't mean to sound that bad.  I was too honest.  I think Ana played better in the second set and was definitely putting a lot more pressure on me.
It feels good to be able to play like that in the quarterfinals, especially against Ana Ivanovic.  She's been No. 1 and has a Grand Slam title under her belt.  So, yeah.

Q.  How are you feeling physically after the long summer?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I'm fine.  I thought about it, and I have less than a handful of tournaments left this year.  I thought about it in warmup.  I only am playing Beijing; Turkey will be really fun.  Just go out with a bang.  Just do the best that I can.  That's what I want to do.

Q.  I know you can't control this, but are you disappointed you won't have a return match with Stosur?  Was that something you were looking forward to?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I definitely ‑‑I like her.  I think she's really nice.  I also really like Vika.  But I was kinda hoping she won, and at the same time was hoping Vika won.  It was a good match.  I actually ended up getting nervous watching it.  I was like, Why am I so nervous?
I think she gave a great effort; she staged an unbelievable comeback in that match.  For her to have lost a lot to Victoria and to do so well in that particular match, it can only help her career.

Q.  The weather forecast for today was really awful.  Didn't look like you were going to maybe get to play.  Were you nervous about that yesterday?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  No.  Today Sasha said I probably won't play.  I said, I will.  (Smiling.)

Q.  You, Azarenka, Sharapova, you are tall, strong, fit, powerful.  Errani is the only one small.  Then you have the other ones, Ivanovic, Stosur also big, strong.  How do you explain Errani can do it?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  She's a great fighter and has a great attitude and believes.  I think when you have such self‑belief in yourself then you can do anything.  I love her attitude.  I do.  I'm inspired by it actually.

Q.  As close as you are to Andy, are you pretty confident or how confident are you that it's only a matter of time before the United States, you know, produces another male who can attain that level?  Do you think it's going to be sooner or later?  Just give me what you know about the system.
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, I don't know.  I think there are some great American tennis players doing well on the junior circuit.  You have to do well in the juniors sometimes before you become good on the professional level.  Maybe there is some players.

Q.  I know you and Ryan Lochte are friends and they showed him on screen.  Was he here to watch your match?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  He texted me and said he was coming.  Yeah, we're really good friends.  The guy is really hilarious.

Q.  Venus played Errani a bunch this summer:  in the Olympics and she beat her in Cincinnati.  I think you were there watching her in Cincinnati that match.  Can you pick up anything from having seen her play, your sister?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  I'm definitely going to have a long conversation the next couple of days with Venus before I play my match.  I will pick up everything I need to know, because she's playing really well against her and I want to do the same thing.

Q.  You have been to this stage of the tournament quite a number of times.  What do you have to do to sort of lock in and get ready for the next couple of matches?
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Yeah, I feel like I'm going to get more focused and serious and start playing Serena tennis in the next couple of rounds, if I get to play two rounds.  That's my goal.
I didn't think I came into this tournament playing my best, but I definitely played better in the last two matches.  I hope I have two matches left, and, you know, give 200%.

Q.  You don't feel like you're playing Serena tennis yet?

Q.  Yeah, I do.
SERENA WILLIAMS:  You do?  Okay.

Q.  Yeah, I do.
SERENA WILLIAMS:  Okay.  Thank you.

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