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June 7, 2014

Simona Halep


6‑4, 6‑7, 6‑4

THE MODERATOR:  Questions in English, please.

Q.  After the match, there was long minutes with the towel over your head.  I'd like to know what your feelings, your thoughts at that moment.  Were you also crying?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yes.  I was crying at that moment for a few minutes, and then I was smiling because I said that it was my first Grand Slam final, and I have to be happy, to smile, because I did everything on court.
I played very good tennis, very good level.  So I'm really proud about these two weeks.  They were incredible weeks here and incredible tournament.  I'm really happy, and it was an amazing feeling on court today.

Q.  Congratulations on a fantastic tournament.  Can you tell us a little bit about, you know, how different it is for a player walking into their first Grand Slam final, and how does a player manage these emotions?
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, it was really tough before the match to manage the emotions.  It was a big match for me.  The first final of Grand Slam.
Yeah, I tried just to stay relaxed, to say that it's a normal final, like a small tournament.  It was a good start for me.  I played really well today.  I'm really happy about this.
I think I was okay on court.  I did everything I could.  It's really tough to play a first final in your career, but it's also amazing to be there.
So it was a nice feeling before.

Q.  How tough was it to adjust your pace of play?  She appeared to be very slow.  Were you surprised that it nearly two‑and‑a‑half hours before she got a warning for time from the umpire?
SIMONA HALEP:  It's her style, and I don't want to say anything about this.  It's normal.  She does this always.
Yeah, for me wasn't too bad, but sometimes, yeah, I felt a little bit nervous during that moments.  But it was okay.  I mean, I cannot say anything about her style, how she's staying before the serve.

Q.  Simona, 4‑4 in the third set.  You had a moment‑‑ yeah, this is the moment.  What happened between the umpire and you?  I thought there was like you was about to serve and he turns and tells you something.
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, I thought that point, that we have to replay the point because I touched the ball.  But the rule is, no, if I don't put the ball on the court we cannot replay the point.  So I think that ball was very important at that moment.
After that, I couldn't manage my nerves maybe and I couldn't stay very focused for the next points.
That's it.  That's life.  So I have to look forward to go, to work harder, and to play many more finals.

Q.  Technically speaking, what do you think the difference was in the match?  What did she do better than you maybe thought she would?  What did you do either worse or better?
SIMONA HALEP:  I think I had good tactics today.  I opened the angles.  Also, I was hitting the ball strong.
But, yeah, she did what she's doing always, like to hit the balls very strong.  The serve was really ‑‑she had a good kick, and it was difficult for me to return.
Yeah, she was moving really well.  I think it was a good, very good match today, a good final.  I didn't expect three sets, three hours, but it happened, and I'm really happy that I could stay very long time on court.
The atmosphere was incredible.  Of course, forever I will not forget this match.

Q.  It did look a little hopeless in the tiebreaker for you.  Can you just talk about where your mind was when you were down so far in the tiebreaker.
SIMONA HALEP:  At 5‑4, I had a feeling that I can win the set.  Was really tough at that moment, because the tiebreak, it's almost luck thing, yeah, at the points.
But I had the feeling that I can believe in my chance to win the second set and to try to win the match in third set.  I did very well.  I tried everything at that moment and it worked for me.
So I'm really happy the way how I played.

Q.  And you fought so very hard; so did she.  It was a very tough mental battle out there.  Talk about her mental toughness, her ability to fight.  She seemed to come back again and again when you were trying to...
SIMONA HALEP:  She has very strong mental.  She's a strong person.  Her style is like‑‑ looks like a strong person she is, because she hits always very strong the balls.  And also in important moments she's hitting very strong.
I think I'm also good at mental.  I'm very strong, and I tried just to stay very close to her during the match.  I did very well.
She's a great player.  She's a great champion.  She had many finals, Grand Slam‑‑ many Grand Slam finals, and also she won a few.
So I want to congratulate her, because she played really well today and we did a good match.

Q.  It was a great final.  The public obviously loved it.  Now, besides lacking Grand Slam experience, an hour and a half later, what do you wish you could do better in this match?  For instance, did you come to the net enough or maybe you were lacking some confidence in your smash?  What did you think you could have done better to improve your game?
SIMONA HALEP:  My forehand, I think.  I have to work more at my forehand, because I did few important mistakes in important moments.
I'm really, how to say, I'm really happy for the way how I played, because I think I played my best tennis.  I tried just to stay very focused during the points.  I did well.
So in my forehand I want to improve more, and to hit ‑‑ when I hit a forehand cross, I want to hit more, to open more the court.
It was a good match, and for sure now I will take a break of tennis.  Then I will work again to play more many matches.

Q.  What have you learned about yourself over these past two weeks?
SIMONA HALEP:  That I can play at very high level.  I can play the finals without big emotions.  I had incredible, two incredible weeks here.
I saw that I can play good at the Grand Slam, because before I had pressure.  Before the tournament in Grand Slams I cannot play my best tennis.  But here I did, and I'm really proud of this.

Q.  On a happier note, I know how much you love shopping.  Do you have any plans?  This is a nice check you're going to walk away with here.
SIMONA HALEP:  Yeah, good question.  Yeah, for sure I will buy something big, but I didn't think about this.
I have time now to see what I want to buy, but for sure will be something special.

Q.  It seems that not only the Romanians that were here but French people, the public, they were also beside you, a lot of them.  How did you feel this?
SIMONA HALEP:  It was amazing atmosphere out there.  My feeling was just to see that the people, all the people are with me, and they say my name during the games and during the points.
So it was incredible, incredible crowd here, and I want to thank to everybody ‑ also the Romanians, because they came special for me to support me today.
I heard that in my country they were watching my match in the city, so it was amazing.  I really want to say thank you to them.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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