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May 27, 2014

Ana Ivanovic


6‑1, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions in English, please.

Q.  That was a potentially tricky match that you were able to get through very, very easily, it looked like.  Talk about your performance today and what it feels like to come in here as kind of a favorite, I guess.
ANA IVANOVIC:  Well, first of all, yeah, I did expect very tough match.  Especially she's been playing really well on clay, and it's a first time we played it against each other, and I didn't know much coming into the match.
But I really stick with the tactic that I talk about with my coach.  I started off really well and aggressive, and I sort of felt I was on top of her for the rest of the match.
That kind of gave me lots of confidence, and I was really happy to have this kind of win.
I mean, it's always nice being back here, you know, but I don't look that far still.

Q.  And then was there an issue with your shoulder at all or anything?  I saw you walk up and ask the umpire about something.
ANA IVANOVIC:  Yeah, you know, it's a bit heavy conditions, and it's been the whole week with a lot of rain and the balls getting heavy.
So it is a bit stiff.  But, yeah, I'm spending some time in the physio room.

Q.  Yesterday Wawrinka lost and said, you know, it's a new world to him.  Maybe you can relate a little bit.  Maybe you can explain what goes through your head the first time you come back to a Grand Slam as a Grand Slam champion and a big favorite and how the pressure changes like this.
ANA IVANOVIC:  Yeah, it changes a lot, you know, because when you come and you are, you know, first up and coming, you have nothing to lose.  Everything is there to gain, you know, and you improve each match, you play some good tennis.
And then all of a sudden a lot of people put pressures, and also outside and also probably from himself, you know.
But everyone was probably talking about his match in semifinal rather than his match in the first round.  It's sometimes hard to deal with, especially when it's new.
You know, he had amazing run in Australia.  So, you know, it's always hard.  Probably he expected himself also to back it up.

Q.  How long did it take you to get accustomed to this new situation, to be a star and...
ANA IVANOVIC:  I'm still adjusting (laughter).
No, it's very individual, you know.  And there is always ‑‑it depends also on the personality, you know.  Because I was very shy.  For me, like, I didn't like the feeling I was in a spotlight.  So for me that was a big issue.
You know, you sort of grow up and mature and for me also it came when I was very young.
Now I feel like a different person, different player.  It's like completely different, yeah, approach I have.

Q.  Being a former champion here, do you feel under more pressure when you come to Roland Garros than the other slams?
ANA IVANOVIC:  Not really.  You know, my dream, my ultimate dream would be to win other two, but it's definitely a good feeling coming back here and knowing I had success here in the past, it kind of drives me to work each round and to try and get there again.

Q.  How much confidence does that match you played against Serena just last week, the other week, give you for this tournament?
ANA IVANOVIC:  It helps.  You know, every time you play against top players, and you sort of, you know, build on that, it does help.  Last few weeks I really played some good tennis.  I beat a lot of top players, and some tough rounds, too.
That's what you need, you know, all kind of variation to get before you get to the Grand Slam.  It might be the same this week.  You never know what you're going to get.
It's important to work through these tough matches and good matches and try to, you know, try to build on that.

Q.  Talking about your early success, when you go to a slam now and you start talking about match by match working your way through the draw, how are you mentally approaching slams differently than maybe you did, you know, six years ago?
ANA IVANOVIC:  Well, I'm going to be honest with you, but there is still nerves involved like the first time when you play.  It's a good thing, you know, because it makes you aware of certain things.
But, you know, now I try to think more about my game, you know, what I'm doing good, what I'm not doing good, what I can improve rather than think about only result.
If you think about result, it just becomes overwhelming.  I really try to put that aside.  Some days it's easier; some days it's harder.  But for me, I really enjoy competing and I try to look at each match as a chance for me to develop and to learn something and, you know, to build, to see it like a game.

Q.  Novak yesterday said that the court was not, center court, was not in the very best condition because of the heavy rain of the last days.  How was it for you?  Did you feel it was great again?
ANA IVANOVIC:  You know, there is no secret that the conditions are very heavy because of all the rain and the balls do get big and heavy.
But, you know, it's same for both players.  You know, it's sometimes hard to slide, you know, and play is a little bit slower.
But still, I really enjoy going out there.

Q.  Do you pay attention at all to upsets, what upsets happen?  Obviously this morning Li Na went out.  We have seen upsets on the guys' side as well.  But generally does it have any effect on your tournament at all?  Is it easy to ignore?
ANA IVANOVIC:  Not in my particular ‑‑I try to focus on my game and on my matches.  But, you know, I do watch a lot of tennis, you know, in my free time.  You know, I try to relax and to, yeah, to watch.
I know Kiki was very happy about her match today, which is nice.  She's young, upcoming, and she can play some great tennis.

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