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January 24, 2004

Kim Clijsters


THE MODERATOR: First question, please.

Q. You must be just thrilled with the way the tournament is developing for you and the way you're playing over the last week?

KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, definitely. You know, I didn't really, you know, have any expectations getting into the tournament just because of my injury. And it's been -- you know, being in the second week as well, it's nice. I mean because, you know, I never really thought I would even participate in the tournament. So that's definitely a bonus, yeah. But I've been playing well. You know, definitely something that I wouldn't think, you know, would happen because I didn't play that many matches before I got into this tournament. Sort of from the start when I played Weingartner and Camerin and today as well, I've been playing really good and at the moments where I had to. Today as well, there were a few moments I was breakpoint down, and I recovered really well.

Q. You expressed some doubts over your ankle earlier in the week. It must be such a bonus to be getting through these matches so quickly?

KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, definitely. That's something that, you know, I want to stay focused and making sure that I don't get players coming back into a match and maybe be on the court for another set or something. That's something that I really want to work on. I want to stay focused throughout the whole match. Yeah, no, it's definitely a bonus having had these three short matches.

Q. Do you look too far ahead in terms of the draw? Venus losing today has really opened it up for you.

KIM CLIJSTERS: Yeah, see, like with all the stuff that's going on, I'm not looking at that at all. I know my next round will be tough. That's what I'm focusing on. Anything can happen. That's why I'm not gonna -- I've never been, I think, the kind of player who before the tournament is gonna look and know who's lost. Of course I know that she lost. But for me, personally, that's not gonna change anything, the way I'm gonna prepare for my next round and my next opponent.

Q. Did it surprise you that she did lose? I mean, you must have...

KIM CLIJSTERS: Of course it surprises you, yeah. I think Lisa is definitely the kind of play, I think, that can make it a lot of girls really tough. She mixes it up so well. She's got the best volleys out there. When she can mix it up, and if you're not at your best, because she comes in so much, you have to be at your best every time to make sure you're making your passing shots and everything. I didn't see anything from Venus, but, you know, so I don't know what happened. But I assume that, you know, I'm sure Venus wasn't playing her best either, because she's been out for a while as well. It's tough, I think, to get back into those match rhythms and when you're down. That's where she used to be so good at, when she was down, raise her level and come back. I think she just needs a few more matches and she'll be back on track.

Q. That was my next question. Is it a reminder you literally cannot take anyone for granted?

KIM CLIJSTERS: Oh, yeah, yeah, for sure. This match shows as well. But anything, any match, you should never take anything too easily and you should just make sure that you focus on what you're doing on the court and make sure you try to get the best out of yourself for every match. Doesn't matter if you're playing a person that's ranked in the Top 10 or someone ranked in the top 200 or something. Just take every match and every tournament as serious as possible.

End of FastScripts….

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