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June 3, 2019

Amanda Anisimova

Paris, France


6-3, 6-0

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How much did it feel like you were feeling the occasion of being in a fourth-round match with the stakes to get to a first Grand Slam quarterfinal? How much was that on your mind or how much were you able to block that out?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I was a bit nervous, but when I was about to step on court I was able to push my nerves aside. I think that really helped me, because I was just taking my time during the match and kind of, like, I was making effortless shots. So I'm really happy about that because I was, like, playing kind of relaxed even though I was nervous before the match. So I'm happy that didn't kick in.

Q. What did you make of her game? Not a lot of people have seen her play before. And what did you expect getting on the court? How did you find it through the match?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I didn't really know much about how she was going to play, so I was just stepping out there and I was just expecting anything that was going to be thrown at me.

Yeah, she was actually hitting the ball quite hard and I was just trying to take my time because she hits with a lot of spin. So yeah, it was pretty much like a clay court game on there. So, yeah.

Q. You take the ball very early. Just wondering how you learnt that and I guess how that developed in your game?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah. Before, I would take it way too early and then I'd miss a lot. I have learned to step a little bit back and then take my time and step in. So I'm trying to find a balance between those two.

Q. When you're saying "effortless shots," what are those for you?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Well, actually, I was watching Simona before my match and then I was, like, Oh, my God, her backhand down the line is so good and she was taking her time, and then I think I was mimicking it in my match.

Q. You're going to get a good look at that backhand in the next match.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I hope that we're both going to be making a lot of backhand-down-line winners. We'll see.

Q. What do you expect that occasion will be like playing Simona at a Grand Slam?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I mean, I can't describe how excited I am. It's amazing playing her. She won it the previous year. So honestly, I couldn't ask for a better matchup. I'm just extremely happy and excited for the nest round.

Q. I saw you two weeks ago in Rome against Mladenovic. It's like a different person playing here. What did you do in those two weeks? You weren't moving that well there, and here you're moving like I don't know who.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Well, honestly, yeah, I lost twice in quallies. I was training super hard and preparing a lot, so I was kind of confused because it didn't feel like I was playing bad. It was, like, This is kind of weird.

I honestly didn't change my practices. I was, like, I'm just going to keep doing the same thing. I was just trusting my work. And I knew it was going to happen eventually, something good, that I was going to start playing better. Yeah, it's happening now. It just takes time.

Q. Simona just played another young sensation on the WTA Tour, Iga Swiatek, and won 6-1, 6-Love. She said she had her best game yet at Roland Garros. She said that she feels really confident, that she feels like this is her place, you know, Paris and stuff like that. What do you think is the balance between the element of surprise that you can bring as a young player and her experience? What counts more in this situation?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Can you rephrase that? I don't really get it.

Q. What do you think balances more in that aspect? Do you think Simona's experience weighs more than the element of surprise that you can bring as a young player, as a player who has nothing to lose at this tournament?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Wait, why did you ask about Iga? Are you asking about me or her performance?

Q. Asking about you, because she just played another young player.

Q. Maybe future superstar of the WTA Tour and she played really, really good. And she said her experience helped her a lot in that kind of game when she plays a match with a player that she didn't play before, like is gonna be the case against you. That's why I was making a comparison between the game you are gonna play against her and the game she played. She says she feels really confident because of that experience but you can bring, at the same time, the element of surprise. What weighs more in your opinion?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I'm sure she's had every kind of experience. But, yeah, she's a Grand Slam champion. Yeah, she's been through all challenges.

I'm just gonna go out there. I have no pressure. Hopefully I can bring my best game. We'll see how it goes.

Q. It's been a while since somebody your age has made it to the later stages, quarterfinals and beyond at a Grand Slam tournament. I'm just wondering whether, to you, it feels like this is happening at a young age and it's early or this feels like you have been building up to this and it's happening at the right time?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: I mean, I feel like it's been building up. I don't really feel like I'm young and first time. I had Indian Wells last year. That was kind of more surprising to me.

Yeah, I mean, I have been playing a lot of matches. Last year I took a little bit of time off but it didn't really affect me. I'm kind of getting used to it already.

Q. You have been here before in Paris obviously for the juniors and the wildcard here. When you walk around do you feel like you know where everything is, or are you as confused as the rest of us with all the changes? How much does it help to have been here before?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yes, that feels like a long time ago. Even though I was in the main draw, I was still in the qualifying locker room. I didn't even know they had a locker room here. I'm aware of that now.

Yeah, it feels like forever ago. I kind of found my place around here. I'm happy I got to play on the new court. It was so beautiful. Happy I got a chance to do that.

Q. I saw you before the tournament start, saw you practicing with the string across the net. I'm curious how much clay-specific stuff you're doing or how much you felt you had to adjust your game to the surface. I'm assuming that's a clay-specific drill. Maybe not.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I don't even know myself. Maybe my coach thinks it is, but I don't know. It's just to get more height over the ball. But we actually lost that string, and today he, like, brought out a string that, like, you know when something's under construction.

I was like, No, I'm going to keep hitting this. It was literally red, and I was, like, for construction. I said, No, that's not going to work. So we have to buy a new one.

Q. Do you feel like you're still under construction or are you a finished project at this point?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Oh, definitely not. No player is ever a finished product. I still have a lot of work to do and a lot of building to do.

Q. You said that you're a Drake fan. He's known as someone who jinxes a lot of athletes.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: I was thinking about it. I was, like, Oh, my God.

Q. If he was to come into the room today, would you take a picture with him or run?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I would. I wanted to meet him for so long. I'm like, it's okay, I'm not that superstitious.

Q. How would you describe the strengths of your game?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I like to step into the court. I feel like on clay I have been kind of getting used to it more because it's different than hard, and I'm really aggressive on hard. I have been kind of, like, mixing it up with playing higher and playing lower, so, like, mixing up my shots. I feel like I have to work a lot on my serve. So that's really important on the clay surface, too.

Q. And what were your thoughts last year when Halep won here in the final?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, I mean, she's an amazing player. I think I watched a little bit. I don't really remember too much. Yeah, it was an amazing result for her and I was super happy. Because I remember she was really sad when she lost in the previous final. I was really happy for her when she did it, because she looked so happy. And it was, yeah, nice to see her win.

Q. You just said that the time you made a final in the junior here was, like, a very long time ago. But it's just three years ago. Of course, your three years are very different from ours, but what do you think is the biggest experience in the past three years? What is the biggest difference three years ago and now?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Actually, the junior final was the year before what we were talking about. Actually, I lost in the quarters the next year of the juniors.

Yes, I have been here twice. Yeah, I mean, it's definitely -- if you would have told me I would have been in the quarters this year, I wouldn't believe you right now.

When I was playing two years ago, I really wanted to just win one match and I would have been the happiest person alive. So to tell me I would be in the quarters right now, I would be very happy.

Q. I was wondering what would be the key factor, if serve would be the big factor in the match against Simona? I'm asking you this because she has 16 breaks in a row in the last three matches. You haven't lost your serve today, for example.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: I mean, we'll see (smiling). I'm going to practice my serve a lot tomorrow, so hopefully she won't break me that much.

Yeah, no, I think my serve, I feel pretty confident about it, and I think I have been hitting it a lot harder than I have been in the past couple of months. I'm feeling good about it. Yeah, we'll see how it goes.

Q. How eager are you for getting these results at a young age? I mean, do you look at the records of youngest players to do things, last teenager to win a Grand Slam, things like that, and say, I want to do that, too? Or are you not as hungry or more patient?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: I have no idea about who did what at what age. People tell me and then I just forget after a second. I don't really care about it too much. I just, like, I'm in the present and I want to do good and I hope for good results, but I don't really think about how old I am. Yeah.

Q. You did a remarkable job not only of taking the ball early today but just changing direction. When you're in the middle of a point like that, do you have a plan that you're going to be changing direction or in the moment do you decide to change direction?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, it's, like, a millisecond I have to think about where I'm going to go. I think it's just because of all the practice I do, honestly. I don't know. It's just how I play, I guess.

Q. Do you remember the last time that you played a match where you felt panicked?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: I think in the first match here I was a bit nervous. I think, like, every first round I play, yeah, I'm going to be very nervous. It's the first round and you haven't played a match yet. I'm pretty sure a lot of players can agree on that.

Q. You had a foot fracture last year. I'm curious how that affected you, you know. I don't know if that was the first major injury of your career and what you did.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Yeah, it was. My first major injury. I was doing well, so it was pretty bad timing. But what kept me motivated was my results at Indian Wells, and I was just hoping for moments like these right now.

That's why I kept being motivated and I was working 100% every day. So I didn't really get upset or I didn't get annoyed at how long the process was. I just kept working and working and I just kept thinking about moments like this.

Q. I haven't seen you in a while, and you seem to have grown enormously since last year. You have a very professional team around you. I'm sure you have checked it. Are you done growing or are you still growing?
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: No, I think I finished growing when I was, like, 15, 16.

Q. Really? You seem to change. That's my mistake. I'm sorry.
AMANDA ANISIMOVA: Well, yeah, I guess my face changed a little bit, maybe. But I don't grow anymore, no.

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