Roland Garros

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Paris, France

Carla Suarez Navarro

Press Conference

S. STEPHENS/C. Suarez Navarro

3-6, 7-6, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I'm sure I speak for everybody when I say it's great to see you back on the tennis court again. Maybe you could just describe the journey that you have been on from the last year and just what it means to you to be back playing at such a high level tonight.

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Well, yes, was a long time, really tough moments. Tough months. But, well, every time I had on my mind that I want to be here, I want to come back. Roland Garros is one of my favorite tournaments, so I have really clear that my first tournament will be this one.

Well, then I tried to prepare myself for my best tennis that I can. Obviously I need more time, but, well, I think I have a good time this week practicing, I have good level on my match. Of course I feel tired at the end. I know that if I don't close the match in two sets, it will be so difficult for me.

But I'm really proud, too, of myself and really happy to have the chance to play here one last time.

Q. Great to see you. I'm wondering, how did it feel on the court today and what were your emotions after the match as you walked off the court?

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Well, at the beginning of the match I was really nervous. I feel a lot on my serve. But then I feel good. I really enjoy. I have a little bit of crowd, and I really enjoy.

But then I was so sad when they have to leave. Well, it was difficult. I think about that yesterday when I was four match in that court, sometimes it can happen. But, well, after the match, I'm not happy with the result, you know. I have 5-4, my serve, and then tiebreak to close the match.

But, well, maybe with the time I see this different but now I'm not too happy. I was here to win that match.

Q. Physically how difficult has it been to get yourself back into shape to play in a Grand Slam again?

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Yeah, was so difficult, you know. My last tournament was Doha last year. Well, until the 1st of March of this year I cannot practice like full, no? Full dream, full tennis. I start to play with soft balls, I start to play 20 minutes. Then every day I'm going better. I play a little bit more.

But then I know that Roland Garros was here, was good for me that they put Roland Garros one week later.

But, well, of course was tough, you know. My body feel a lot of change in that months. But I did everything that I can to be here, because I don't want to miss Roland Garros for one more year, and I'm really want to be here for one last time that I said before.

Q. What has it been like the reception from other players coming back? A lot of players have talked about being very excited to see you. Petra Kvitova wanted to give you a hug in the locker room, things like that. What has been the welcome back from the other women on tour?

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Well, I saw a lot of them in Madrid, I was there for practice, and here. Yeah, we talk a lot when we can in the locker, during the lunch. Well, I'm really happy to see them again. I'm really happy to be here again with all of them.

Yeah. That's it. I receive a lot of love from them also.

Q. If I have it right, you said the other day that you had won your greatest match, your greatest match. Can you talk about just the process of fighting and coming back and overcoming all you had to overcome? Did being an elite tennis player, elite athlete, did that help you?

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Yeah, I think so. You know, tennis player, we travel around the world, and not even in the best conditions. Well, that I say before was tough, you know. I want to retire last year, but first the pandemic and then my cancer, you know, I can't.

I have all the time in my mind that I want to come back. I was dreaming every day. Well, I know that the rest of the players will be really good with a lot of match.

Well, I don't know what to say. Was tough, but I was ready to play, to practice, to be here again in my best level. That I said before I think I feel proud of what I did, but I'm really sad because I lost. I mean, every time I go on court, I want to win. But then nothing else to say, guys.

Q. You had a nice greeting at the net with Sloane. Curious if you spoke to her, what it was like playing her in this match and if two are friends or if you know her well.

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Sorry, I don't understand your question.

Q. You had a nice embrace at the net with Sloane and spoke a bit with her. Curious what it was like playing her and I don't know if you two are friendly or what that's like?

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: Yeah, I'm happy to play against her, you know. I prefer playing against Sloane. She was a champion, Grand Slam champion. I know her from long time ago.

Yeah, when I see the draw, I say, Yeah, I like that match. I preferred that match even that young girl or someone too I don't know really good. I know Sloane from long time ago. I saw her message during my treatment, so, well, I'm happy that she's through to the second round.

Q. What are some of your favorite memories in Roland Garros that you will take with you from this tournament?

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO: From all these years? Well, I think my first year here I passed the qually. I was able to play in Philippe Chatrier for the first time against Mauresmo, local player. The crowd was really nice.

Then I have really good matches on Suzanne Lenglen also. I have really good memories from here, and that's why I want to be here for the last time. I don't want to miss Roland Garros.

A lot of years coming here, the tournament change a lot every year to better, and always will be one of my favorite tournaments, for sure.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
108217-1-1063 2021-06-01 21:29:00 GMT

ASAP sports

tech 129