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February 19, 2014

Venus Williams


V. WILLIAMS/A. Ivanovic
6‑2, 6‑1

THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions, please.

Q.テつ Ana said you're playing pretty much as well as you ever have done in your career.テつ What do you feel about that?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ You know, I'm just trying to play well every day, take one point at a time and learn from my mistakes every match, try to go out there relaxed with a clear mind.テつ That's what I'm trying to do.

Q.テつ How do you feel you're playing?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I think I'm playing smarter.テつ Yeah.テつ But I just want to keep playing better.

Q.テつ Why smarter?テつ I mean, you've always been a smarter player.テつ Where did your mind go?テつ Took a vacation?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Smarter?テつ (Smiling.)テつ I don't know, honestly.テつ I just feel like I haven't been playing smarter this tournament especially.

Q.テつ You're serving very consistently, and you came to the net quite a lot.
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Did I?テつ I didn't even see the stats yet.テつ I didn't feel like I came to the net a lot, but I felt like I was in control of most of the points, I think most of the time either attacking or putting her in a position that maybe she wasn't as comfortable in.
You know, both of us are players that want to control, so it felt good to be in control, as I know she can dictate so well.

Q.テつ Obviously every match is different, but this is very, very different from your match last month against her.
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, I learned a lot from that match.テつ I definitely think I approached this match differently.
I have improved a lot since then, too.テつ I have had to take some tough losses, but I have learned from them, and, you know, made them constructive.テつ That's what I'm trying to do each time.

Q.テつ Is there no longer an issue in backing up matches?テつ If you get a good win, you're able to do it again the following day?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I think that's a process for everyone.テつ No match is a given.テつ Everyone is playing well, so you could play well one day and then someone else could come out and play really well and you not as well.
So whether I think it's now or future in the past, you have to just be on every day.

Q.テつ Are you feeling health‑wise better or have you learned how to deal with making yourself feel better under the circumstances?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, I just do the best I can every match regardless.テつ So that's pretty much where I'm at.

Q.テつ Presumably you have to try and preserve energy a little.テつ Why are you playing doubles?テつ Why did you play doubles this week?
VENUS WILLIAMS: テつWell, we thought that we were going to be able to play sooner.テつ We thought, you know, we'd be able to play Monday and then space it out, but that clearly didn't work.
Here we are playing in the middle of the night, so we would like to play especially a tournament where the singles draw is a little smaller, so we thought it would be a great chance for us to perhaps play some doubles.

Q.テつ Is that the danger in making those decisions?テつ You don't know how it's going to really play out?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ No, I think we ended up both playing night matches, so that doesn't work out well for our doubles.

Q.テつ Can you just say what you learned from the match in Auckland against Ana?テつ You said you learned a lot.
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I learned a lot.テつ I will keep that to myself, using my own tactics (smiling).テつ I like to learn from my losses and get better if I can.

Q.テつ Do you nevertheless feel that your emotions, your sense of optimism, is quite a lot greater now than it was at that time back in January?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I felt very optimistic, because I was hitting the ball really well in practice, and as long as I'm hitting it well in practice and have it translate into the match and also, you know, I'm not going out there and getting run over, I mean, people are having to play, you know, to the very end to beat me, and I know I can play better, so that gives me room for improvement.
As long as I'm out here, I'm going to be optimistic.

Q.テつ Do you sense a lot of people want you to get back?
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ I think there is definitely a lot of people that want me to get back, but in the end, at the end of the day, I have to believe in my own self.テつ No one is going to do that for me.テつ No one is going to be able to‑‑ you know, there is going to be a lot of people who won't believe you and they are going to let you know that.
That's really not my problem.テつ That's theirs.テつ Because guess what?テつ They haven't won Wimbledon.テつ I have (smiling).テつ It keeps me warm at night.

Q.テつ You guys have to expect that you're going to play nights in premier spots, matches.テつ Can't be a surprise though, right?テつ You know people come out to see Serena and Venus.
VENUS WILLIAMS:テつ Yeah, it's an honor, but I think we didn't really make any requests.テつ I guess we should have maybe been a little more proactive about asking when we would play.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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