THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. A little bit of a tricky match to kind of get your way through. What were you kind of seeing from her that maybe caused some issues in the first set and how did you solve it?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think, yeah, I mean, I think everybody saw that Venus is really a player with a lot of experience. She knows how to play against different opponents.
Also, today I think she — yeah, she played really tricky, but on the good way. I mean, it was really hard for me to play my game, also with changing the rhythm and everything.
I was really trying to, in the first set especially to finding my rhythm and playing my tennis, but it was not so easy. And, I mean, to play against Venus, it’s always tough. I know this.
I was expecting a tough match. I’m happy that I won the first set and then, yeah, could move in and playing a little bit better also my tennis then in the second set.
Q. She came on court with the right knee taped up. It didn’t look like she was moving well and not serving with as much pace as we know. How much of that affects you, though? Because it looked like it took you a while to get settled in.
ANGELIQUE KERBER: Yeah, I mean, of course, I was expecting that she’s serving fast, and, yeah, hitting the balls. But, you know, I was trying to get used to it. It took me a little bit, like, few games of it.
But I think she’s always a fighter, and when she’s going on court, she tries her best. Doesn’t matter what she has. And this makes her also, as a champion, I mean, she’s going out there, trying her best and playing always, like, with a lot of experience.
Yeah, I think it was a good match also from both of us.
Q. How much more are you going to have to lift your level when you play Bencic?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think it will be completely different match tomorrow. I mean, Bencic is, yeah, playing really flat and she’s going for it. She has a lot of confidence, especially from the last weeks. It will be not an easy match. It will be a battle.
But I’m looking forward. I mean, this is the matches I’m always looking forward to have, especially in big tournaments, semis. And, yeah, I know that I have to, yeah, play also aggressive and going for it tomorrow.
Q. What makes you proudest of your fight today?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think that I played every single point each, I mean, especially in the first set to get used to her game, how she is playing, and also to how she changed the rhythm a little bit, to focusing on every single, like, point. Like going for it also when she put, like, the lob ones and the high ones and then the short ones.
So I was, in the first set, thinking that I was, like, moving everywhere and when I have the chances to move her. And I think that was the key point for me in the match.
Q. Going into this match, you beat her the last time you played. But overall, the overall record is in her favor. Does that mean anything? Does that matter going into the match tomorrow?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: Not really. I mean, I played against Belinda so many matches, also close ones. The last one was in Perth and in Wimbledon last year. Also during the tournaments, we practicing a lot together.
So I think she knows how I’m playing. I know how she is playing. It will be really interesting match on a high level. Yeah, I know that I have to play one of my best tennis tomorrow.
Q. I know you’re not done here yet, but next week when the circuit moves to Miami, there will be a new venue. What will you miss most about Key Biscayne?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think everything. I don’t know how the new venue is. I heard quite good things about it. But of course, like, Key Biscayne was always, like, the traditional, you are driving over the bridge, you are on the water.
So I will miss, for sure, the most to, yeah, to having the nice view. Doesn’t matter if it’s the morning, the night when you’re going back, having the skyline and everything.
Yeah, let’s see. I’m looking forward how the new venue will be.
Q. How do you think it will — what do you think it will be like playing in a football stadium?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I don’t know. I never played in a football stadium. So it will be interesting. Also, how they built the center court in.
Yeah, I mean, I have no idea, but I will, yeah, I will know it in few days.
Q. What has been kind of, I guess, the kind of story of your tournament so far? I mean, you had that great start against Cornet, and it’s been seemingly battles through it. What do you think has been the key?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: Here?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I think I had everything right now. I mean, I played really good the first match. Then I had also my comeback. Then I have a three-setter, as well, where I was not playing good at the beginning. Then today I had, like, a completely different match with changing rhythm and playing against Venus. So it’s always tough. And tomorrow it’s also a completely new opponent, new match.
And, yeah, I think I had everything in this 10 days already.
Q. You mentioned seeking out Belinda on the practice courts quite a bit. Maybe you struggled with her in the beginning. Is that something you would do is seek out something that you couldn’t quite figure their game out and trying to get them on the practice courts as a way to learn about them?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: You know, Belinda is, like, playing great tennis. Of course, when you play matches against one few times, you know already, like, how she is playing or, like, how the game plan looks like. And when you’re practicing with her, it’s the same. I mean, you get used to the speed, to the technique, to everything. You feel the ball.
Yeah, I mean, we practicing a lot. Maybe that helps me, also, to play good matches against her in the last matches. I don’t know if it’s about the practice.
Q. Was there something you found tricky about her game back in 2014 when you first met?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: I don’t know (smiling). I have no idea.
I mean, she is really going in and stepping in the court. She’s playing really aggressive. Yeah, you have to get used to her speed, as well, because she is taking the balls really fast. She’s staying on the line. So I think that maybe. I don’t know.
Q. With your years of experience, when you face someone you have never played, in that match, how long does it take you to kind of size up the game and get a read on them?
ANGELIQUE KERBER: It takes always, like, few games. I mean, sometimes one set. I mean, it’s depending. But, I mean, you know what to expect because you are speaking with some other players. You are watching few matches about your opponents.
But when you are on court, it’s always different. So it took you always like — me, it always tooking, like, few games, sometimes one set, to get used to the opponent, yeah. Yeah.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
Rev #1 by #366 at 2019-03-15 02:54:00 GMT