An Interview with Justine Henin-Hardenne
Q. Your assessment of today's match looking forward to the clash with Lindsay Davenport.
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: Yeah, I think I'm very happy the way I played for the first week. I think I've played pretty serious matches, very professional, very aggressive way. So I'm very happy the way I finished this week.
And Tuesday starts not another tournament, but it's going to be the next step, playing the No. 1 player in the world. So it's going to be a good test for myself. I will enjoy being here in the quarters again. I think that's pretty amazing after four months off. I'm very happy about that. And I try to enjoy that. It's going to be a tough match anyway.
Q. With a day like today, being so hot, how much is it about just getting the job done, getting in and out as quickly as you can?
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: Yeah, it's great to play this kind of match, very quick. Even if we play with the roof, it was still pretty hot in there, very humid, very heavy. It's good to be out very quickly, out of the court.
Yeah, it's pretty amazing the heat now. This morning at 10:00, it was 35 already. It's tough for the players, for the crowd. That's great that we have this rule that we don't play outside. I think it's much better for everyone.
Q. Would you prefer to play outdoors or indoors?
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: I don't care about this. I take, I mean, what I have to do. I do my job. Even if I have to play indoor or outdoor it doesn't matter. We'll see. I think it's going to cool down a little bit probably in the next few days. But we'll see. I don't think too much about that.
Q. Is this the toughest place to play? It's hot in Florida, sometimes at the US Open.
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: I think it's toughest than at the US Open because here the sun is very hot, it hits very hard. I had a little bit of similar weather in Indian Wells when I played Lindsay in the final in 2004. It's been so hot. It was quite similar.
But I think in New York, it's more humid, but it's not as hot. I do prefer that a little bit.
Q. Is there anything specific you have to do to get past Lindsay again?
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: I'll have to play my best tennis, for sure. I'll have to be very aggressive. I'll have to be careful on the first two or three shots in the points because everybody knows she's very aggressive on the first shots.
We'll see about that. Right now I try to enjoy my victory today, and tomorrow I think it's going to be time for me to think about my next round.
Q. How did that feel out there today?
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: Like I said two minutes ago, I felt good out there. I mean, I played very consistent, especially in the first set, very focused, very aggressive. Against this kind of player, you have to be careful. Beginning of the second set I lost my concentration a little bit, started to sleep a little bit. But finally I could end the match very good and very quickly, so I'm very happy about that.
Q. After your injury problems earlier last year, beginning of last year, you missed this tournament last year, you have a pretty good win streak here in Australia.
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: Yeah, I'm very happy about that, for sure, because two months ago I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to come here. That's for sure my biggest victory, to be healthy, being on the court. I just enjoy that so much. After that I think the result is not that much important. But I have a lot of success since I arrived here in Australia.
Played a lot of matches. That's what I'm here for, get my confidence back. I think I can make conclusions at the end of a whole season. That's what I wish for in 2006, to play a whole season, then we'll see at that point where I will be and how I feel.
Q. Are you surprised it seems to be going so well here?
JUSTINE HENIN?HARDENNE: A little bit. I had a lot of comebacks in the last two years, so I know I can do that. I can do good comebacks. But it takes a lot of energy. I hope this one is a good one, the last one for a long time.
But it's very hard. At the beginning you have a lot of doubts because you don't know what to expect, you don't know how the other player's going to play. It's been a chance for me that my comeback was at the beginning of the season, because everyone had a long break in December, so that was probably an advantage for me.