Roland Garros

Saturday, 3 October 2020

Paris, France

Petra Kvitova

Press Conference

P. KVITOVA/L. Fernandez

7-5, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I think the other day you said you hadn't really seen much of Leylah playing. After playing today you probably won't forget that match in a hurry.

PETRA KVITOVA: Well, yeah, it's true. I didn't really play her. I didn't really know anything about her. Just that she's lefty.

I saw a couple of games, maybe just two of them, when she played the last match against Hercog so I a little bit watched. It's always different facing the opponent on the court and just watching it from the outside.

Definitely think that she is really playing great game. She's a great mover. She catch a lot of balls, and if she has a chance, she's really going for it. It was really challenging today. I'm really happy I found a way even though it wasn't easy. Lefty is different as well a little bit.

But, yeah, I'm so glad that I was still there even fighting in the first set, back on the track, and I didn't really know that I gonna turn it around. But I was just trying to, you know, kind of came back to the set to my game to find a way.

It was great I was still able to win the first set. I'm really glad for me that I was still there mentally.

Q. My question to you is you were down 5-1 in the first set. What's going through your mind? How were you able to bounce back from that deficit?

PETRA KVITOVA: Well, as I mentioned, I wasn't really coming back or something. I was just there every point to kind of get my rhythm, my game on, and just probably be a little bit patient to get ready for the second set.

Suddenly the match was turning around a little bit, and, you know, I served a little bit better, I won my games on the serve finally, so it always give me a little bit more confidence.

Yeah, I faced a set ball, as well. I'm really glad I was moving well then and play a little bit smarter, I would say. I tried to go more often to the net because from the baseline it was really difficult to kind of make some winner or something.

I was just there counting the points. I mean, that's how I turn it around, the first set.

Q. For the last decade we have talked a lot about how Czech tennis is really on the rise, especially on the women's side, so many different players and so much quality within all of the playing fields. Now I think the same can be said for Canadian tennis, as well, especially with Leylah and Bianca Andreescu and those players. What do you think it kind of says about these kinds of federations who are able to invest money in all this talent to kind of allow these people to really grow and to really become champions?

PETRA KVITOVA: Well, I mean, definitely it's good to invest money to the young talent, for sure. We do have some in Czech Republic, as well. Our generation of Czech players right now, it's incredible. So we are really happy.

Actually, I think that we are just motivating each other, as well, a little bit. We are seeing how the other ones are playing. It's a bit about the colleagues and about /*Z and opponents, as well. So of course we want to be better and better. So that's I think it's good for the energy, for the practices, and for everything.

I think it's the same in Canada probably. I mean, they are really, as you mentioned those players, they are great. Eugenie is there still. Of course making the final of Wimbledon, it's incredible. I think she was kind of the first one who showed that it's really possible to be there and just trying to be better and better.

So that's nice.

Q. Everyone tells me that you are one of the nicest players in tennis. Some people say "the" nicest but we all know you've got a big will to win as well. What do you do to impose your style of play on your opponents? And if you'll excuse the pun, make them "petrified" of you?

PETRA KVITOVA: Thank you very much. If the others are saying, that's of course nice.

Well, I mean, I don't know. I just try to play fair play since I was kid, because when I played those small tournaments when I was kid, the opponents were, like, cheating a little bit. My parents of course were very pissed of it, and they didn't like it. But they said, Okay, but you will not do it. If she does it, then do it, as well. But I said, Well, I can't do it. If it's in, I mean, I can't say it's out.

Yeah, I'm just trying to kind of, you know, be still fair play and play even normal and behave normally. We are still human beings.

I think that's how it is, and that's how tennis is in my eyes. It's always a (indiscernible) sport, it's a gentleman's sport. That's how I feel it.

Q. Seems so weird to have you on the other side of the frosted glass, and yet we are doing the news conferences this way. I was curious whether you find this harder or easier, better or worse than the regular face-to-face news conferences? If it makes a difference when you are doing it in a language which is not your first language, even though you would never know it from your beautiful English.

PETRA KVITOVA: Well, of course that I'm preferring always to be face to face, but, I mean, on the other hand this is how it's working right now in the world. It's not only in the tennis but in the other jobs they are not, you know, traveling to have conferences somewhere around the world but just doing it online with the camera.

So I think that we are lucky enough to have this possibility of doing it right now like this, so I'm really glad that you are online, guys, in a way. I mean, it's great that we can talk even like this.

Yeah, I mean, what we can do, right? It's how it is. So I mean, of course face to face is always better, but this is okay. If it's okay for you guys, actually (smiling).

Q. What more do you feel you need to do at this stage of the tournament that gets you over the next line and over the next round after that? Do you think this is probably the biggest opportunity for you at Roland Garros for a while?

PETRA KVITOVA: To be honest, I'm not thinking that far. I know how many great players are still in the draw and playing great and everything. I'm not a clay player, anyway. I mean, I'm enjoying play on the clay, I grew up on the clay, but definitely there is more kind of specialists of the clay players here in the tournament.

I'm just looking for the next round. I'm not the person who is looking too much ahead, and I will never be one of them. This is too much for me to think, so I like to have a clear mind to be focusing on the next opponent.

I'm not watching the draw. I'm just, you know, after my match, my coach tell me who I'm gonna play next. That's how it is. I don't want to, you know, go that far away. I mean, I was in the semifinals 2012. I know how it is. I know I can play well here. That's important for me.

Q. Speaking of your next opponent, Zhang Shuai, you have obviously played each other different times, two clay matches I think you've split. Can you talk about the challenges of playing Zhang Shuai.

PETRA KVITOVA: I'm really glad that I can play her. She's really one of the nicest person here. Always say hi, always smiling, everything. I really like her.

That's nice. I'm really happy that we can meet each other in the second week of the Grand Slams. That's perfect.

I remember we played in New Haven on the hard court, played in Prague on the clay. She really can play well. She's really aggressive player. I think this is how it suits her, this kind of Roland Garros. And, yeah, we have a similar style, so we know each other pretty well.

Yeah, I just need to take it like every point as I did today. It's not really about tactics when you play somebody who is really hitting hard. So I need to hit it hard, as well (smiling).

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
102195-1-1063 2020-10-03 18:25:00 GMT

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