Under the Patronage of H.h. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai

February 19- March 4, 2023
Dubai Duty Free tennis stadium
February 19- March 4, 2023
Dubai Duty Free tennis stadium
February 22, 2023

Aryna Sabalenka – Press Conference

2023 Women's Singles 3rd Round: A. SABALENKA/J. Ostapenko 2-6, 6-1, 6-1

Aryna Sabalenka defeats Lauren Davis (USA) in their second-round singles match at WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship, Dubai, UAE.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. The difference between the first and second set, what improved?

ARYNA SABALENKA: To be honest, I mean, she played unbelievable tennis in the first set. I wasn’t really ready for that fast tennis. She was just getting everything, and everything was in.

I don’t know, magically I turn around this match, start playing even more aggressive, step in a little bit, put her under pressure, especially on her serve. It’s worked well.

Just super happy with this win.

Q. Anything running in your mind about mixing up some shots, maybe trying to disturb her aggression?

ARYNA SABALENKA: Yeah, it was part of our tactic. From that kind of shot she was playing really deep, fast, flat balls, there is no much you can do. You just have to stay low and you just have to keep putting that balls back. If she plays some short balls, then you can mix it up.

Unfortunately, I don’t have much chances to do that. I was trying to changing the trajector from my forehand, going with the spin, a little bit flat, a little bit slice. I was trying my best.

Q. The changes you made on your serve, do you feel you’re more fluid now?

ARYNA SABALENKA: I mean, I feel it really well. I feel like if something is not working, I can fix it, I can change my serve.

There is no way you can serve the same every day. You sometimes just have to go with the half speed. Sometimes you just go for it, and everything is going in.

Today I didn’t feel my serve quite well. I was trying to mix it up a little bit. Wasn’t really going for flat serves. Yeah, it’s really help me to stay in the game.

Q. I wanted to ask you about on-court coaching, if that helps you with your style of play. Was it particularly useful to you today?

ARYNA SABALENKA: On-court coaching? You mean when there was coaching could come on the court?

Q. No. As in even when you…

ARYNA SABALENKA: There is no much they can say. Everything I have to do we already spoke before the match. I know what I have to do. They know that I know (laughter).

The only thing they can keep telling me is just stay low, keep fighting, put her under pressure. That’s it.

What they are saying, it’s really helping me at some point.

Q. With just one double-fault today, six from your rival, are you at peace today?

ARYNA SABALENKA: Still improving, so it’s better than it was yesterday. No, I’m not pissed (smiling).

Q. The night you won the Australian Open, you posted a picture on your social media ‘time to celebrate’ with four boxes of pizza. Your fans back in China are very excited to find there’s also Chinese fried rice.

ARYNA SABALENKA: The whole Australian Open I was eating fried rice with Chinese-style chicken. Not orange chicken, was a little bit spicy. The whole Australian Open I was eating my favorite food.

After the match, they bring it to me. I was like, I ate it a lot, this is time for some pizza (smiling).

Q. One year when you play in China, you said Chinese fried rice gives you strength.

ARYNA SABALENKA: This is probably the secret. I have to ask my coach for fried rice.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

Our Partners