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Sony Ericsson Open (Miami): win over Victoria Azarenka (BLR) in third round

30th March, 2008

Moderator: Questions, please.

Q: That was a close one, huh?

Svetlana: Yeah, pretty much like this. When she serves out, and matchpoint I was like, Oh, my god. I saw that one was out, so I was pretty happy with that one.

Q: When you get down to your last breath like that, do you start thinking back to the Vaidisova match or other matches where you had to dig down?

Svetlana: No. My only thought was like okay, 6-1, 5-2, I'm just one break down. Actually, if you don't look that side, you're just one break. But then it's lots of pressure, because I was not playing any well. So this is what I was working to change. I was not awake quite well. I was not moving that well. It's very different court. The stadium is much different than court No. 1 where I played before, and it's much different. But still I had to improve that I was working on it during the match. It's pretty late, but I got it, so... I started to move better and just play a little bit better. I didn't play well, but still I won the match.

Q: You know, Jelena had lots of trouble last night.

Svetlana: No, I didn't know anything about it.

Q: She had a comeback big time last night, too. They're after you guys.

Svetlana: I think the conditions here than Indian Wells is very different. The ball is completely different, you know. The ball bounce there like double higher. So, like my serve with spin, it's not doing the same thing that did there. Like I have to find another strokes. My forehand I can hit better here, but you need matches to get used to it. In difficult and critical moments, it's hard to understand everything.

Q: Do you think it's because there's more moisture in the air here? This is much more humid.

Svetlana: Yeah, yeah, because the balls are the same. The air is just humid, and the balls are very heavy, very heavy. I like these conditions. But still, from Indian Wells, you played three weeks with one balls, and then with one kind of thing you're used to it. You know, you close your eyes and you do this. Here you close your eyes and, Where's the ball? Oh, I don't know. So you have to change this.

Q: The toughness that you found today, I know you've had a little bit of trouble in finals lately, is that something that you need to sort of fine tune so that you're bringing that out in yourself when it really counts in a final?

Svetlana: Well, yeah. I hit doubles in finals because I lose them. But the final maybe I should have win it was Dubai, because Sydney Justine just played better than me in important moments. It was a great match. It's not like I give up. I didn't. She just played well. In Indian Wells last week, Ana, I took the wrong tactics. I was playing wrong against her, so she was very comfortable out there. She played unbelievable in very important moments in first set. In second set, I wasn't played so well, but continues like I'm not there. But, yeah, definitely. If I can improve even more in the finals it would be great. It's just another level I should take there, you know.

Q: Have you ever worked with a sports psychologist or anyone to work with you?

Svetlana: Yeah, I do work. But it's not only from psychology. It's another level you've got to play. Not like you've played before the final, it has to be higher.

Q: You were down 3-5 to Vaidisova, but you came back from that one, too. Is there a mentality that once you've come back in a big match at a big tournament, it's easy to do the next time?

Svetlana: Well, I think the mentality is that I always have to believe in myself. This is, I think, the main thing. Being there, I know I'm better player. I know I can do better than I was doing whole match, and I knew I have this reserve there. But for me, I have to work next step not to get to this limit. You know, because when I get water here, I start to play much better. But I need to play much better before getting water to my nose so I can be there. You know what I mean? So... But it's there. It's definitely there, and this moment I just find myself better.

Q: When you won this tournament a couple years ago, I mean, the conditions here from year to year don't change that much.

Svetlana: I didn't play Indian Wells before.

Q: I'm sorry?

Svetlana: I didn't play Indian Wells before.

Q: That was the difference, just the fatigue?

Svetlana: It's huge. One, it's fatigue, and second it's conditions that you come new, you're fresh. And you're used to condition much quicker. It's different, you know. You come from home to tournament you get it quicker, but then you play matches. I played seven or six matches at Indian Wells, and then you have to change everything; this is hard. But I think I have ability to do that, and I'm looking forward for my next match to improve. There is sometimes you have these tough matches from the start, but then you can improve in the tournament. So I'm looking forward in my next match to improve it.

Q: When you got here the weather wasn't quite like this. It was a little cooler, so you really didn't have much time to get used to this, did you?

Svetlana: Yeah, first of all, it's this. But then second, it's still different conditions. It's heavier. Usually like I play here, I sweat so much. But still I was in first set, second set, I was not moving well. But then in the third I got so much on top of her. Like she was tired, and I was not that. I mean, I'm fit, but I need these matches to play. I don't know.

Q: Will you be ready in two days?

Svetlana: I think I play tomorrow.

Q: Tomorrow?

Svetlana: Yeah.

Q: Will you be ready tomorrow?

Svetlana: Well, I'll do my best to be ready. I'll make sure I bring it, and right from the first game.

Q: When you walked in here, you were walking very slowly.

Svetlana: I always walk slowly. Always. On the court, I take my time. I don't like to walk fast. I hate it. I don't know. For what? I don't have any rush.

Q: Except when you're dancing though, right?

Svetlana: No, I don't dance.

Q: Not even to hip-hop?

Svetlana: I love hip-hop, but I don't dance hip-hop, believe me. I would be wrong.

Q: The humidity it's similar to Spain, isn't it?

Svetlana: Not really. It's much dryer. It's not right? Yeah, it's much humid. More humid.

Q: Here?

Svetlana: Yes. But then it was completely different to the Pacific. It's not maybe the same, but from last week, it's hard to change. I think this is also the reason that Novak lost, you know. Because you cannot get so quick used to that.

Q: So next it's either, is it Azarenka? Radwanska?

Svetlana: No, I played today Azarenka, but tomorrow I play Peer, and this girl who beat Azarenka.

Q: Larcher de Brito.

Svetlana: Yeah.


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