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Interview: Daria Kasatkina (def. Jaqueline Cristian 6-7(4) 6-2 6-3)

April 5, 2024

Quarterfinals – Daria Kasatkina def. Jaqueline Cristian 6-7(4) 6-2 6-3

MODERATOR: Okay. We are going to go ahead and get started with Daria Kasatkina. Daria, congratulations. Back into the semifinals once again. Can you just give us your overall thoughts on your match and how you battled today

DARIA KASATKINA: Well, it was a very, very tough match from the beginning to the end. We were both fighting for our lives today. Also, we showed a pretty good level of tennis, and, yeah, really happy with the effort I put today to come back after the tough loss of the first set and then be able to get better level also through the second and third set and just, yeah, really happy with my win today.

MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. She’s had a great run this week, so were you surprised at her level? And then, Daria, what do you think are a couple of the things that are really going well for you in your game, the aspects of your game that are going well?

DARIA KASATKINA: Well, I wasn’t surprised because, honestly, Jaqueline, she’s a very good player. I always knew it. She was unlucky with a very bad injury, like I think two years ago. So it’s very tough to come back. And she’s definitely on her way back, and she’s finally at a good level.

Yeah, that’s what I was actually prepared for, for the battle, for like a very tough match. And, also, she won a couple of great matches here. So, yeah, I wasn’t surprised with that.

Talking about Charleston, I don’t know. It’s a special place for me, and it’s also very nice tournament, transition from the hard court to red clay, because, honestly, green clay is something between. It’s not exactly the red clay, and obviously not the hard court. But it’s very good surface to make this transition.
Just everything around makes Charleston special place, and I really enjoy being here, and maybe because unconsciously I want to stay here longer, that’s why I’m playing good here.

Q. Daria, I went back and looked at press you did after you won in 2017. Actually, I even remembered.

DARIA KASATKINA: You remembered? I don’t.

Q. Well, you said a lot of noteworthy things, but one of the things you said that stood out was “I played with my brain.”


Q. Can you talk a little about that, because I’m assuming to some extent, that’s still how you’re playing.

DARIA KASATKINA: Yeah. Well, physically I can be not that strong as a lot of girls on tour. So I am not that powerful. So I have to win with something else, which is my brain and my heart. So I have to fight and fight smart and try to always find the ways how to win, how try to sneak and steal these points from the opponents, have to make them uncomfortable.

And, of course, I have to always improve my game, trying to — because like through my career, happen a few times when I was kind of facing the wall with like not knowing what I’m doing wrong because I was losing matches, playing the same like I was playing, but I couldn’t win a match. So like a few times I had a point where I had to change something.

It’s tough because it’s something, like a reality which you have to face that you are not good enough in certain moments, but also it helps you to progress. These things they make you work and find the good way of how to go.
So, yeah, I think like everything in life, tennis is pretty similar to that.

Q. Vika and Jess are on court right now, but just briefly do you mind talking about the different matchups that that would offer you in the semis?

DARIA KASATKINA: Well, I would not choose either — I wouldn’t choose either of them, honestly. They can play long. They can stay on court as much as they want. I mean, they are both great players, incredible players, very tough to beat. If you want to beat them, you have to be on your best shape, showing the best you can. So I don’t know. They’re both aggressive, both doing everything on the highest level, so exactly what you face in the semifinals all the time. But I am ready. I’m prepared. I spent quite a long time on clay. So I am used to it already. It’s going to be a very tough match, obviously. Doesn’t matter who wins. Doesn’t matter who is going to be on the other side tomorrow. all I can say, they’ve both been on my vlog. (Laughs). So that’s good. But they didn’t tell me anything about how to beat themselves. (Laughs).

Q. What’s the best part of the vlog this week from Charleston? Have you watched it?

DARIA KASATKINA: Yes. I watched it, obviously. It’s not finished yet. It’s finished the day when the tournament for me is finished. So, so far it’s my favorite vlog, honestly. It’s so good. I swear, it’s so good. Like it’s so rich and just so many things happening, a lot of interactions with the players. So, yeah, Vika is going to be there. Vika, Paula, Daria, obviously. Zabio. She’s always there. Yeah. And just interactions, like you will see how Charleston, how incredible is this tournament, because Natalia is walking with a camera everywhere. Like it’s modeling hour already. It’s going to be, for the moment, longer than an hour and 15 minutes. So it’s a documentary. (Laughs). Bob needs to pay some money. (Laughs). Bob needs to open his wallet. (Laughs).

Daria Kasatkina
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