Best Bites from Friday


Western & Southern Open quarterfinalists met with the media following their matches Friday.


Ashleigh Barty on semifinal opponent Angelique Kerber…

“She's one of the best competitors in the world. She knows how to play big tournaments, knows how to play big matches. She's really locked down into the Angie of old in a sense where she's confident, she's aggressive, but she's able to run and to move and put the ball in tricky spots, to not let you dictate too much. That's a challenge of when you play against Angie is you have to almost ride a fine line a little bit of not pressing too much but not being too defensive where she can move you around the court.”


Angelique Kerber on the ups and downs of her career and her strong performance since June...

“I think it's more the process where I go through. In my career, I always had the up-and-downs. I'm through the best moments but also through really tough moments in my career. I had always been consistently working hard and I also worked hard the last few months, starting the year. It's just the patience that I had to know that one day maybe it will turn around, maybe it clicks one match, and then I get my confidence back.  I go through tough matches, as well. This is what actually happened also in Germany when I played in my home country with the fans then of course on grass, which is my favorite surface. Now I just try to continue how I played there, and, you know, staying in my flow and enjoying my tennis as well again, because I know, you know, there are always ups-and-downs, and you need to have your patience.”


Benoit Paire on building confidence from Cincinnati performance…

“I was feeling good out of the court. I could enjoy life like a normal tour, like before. That's why I play tennis, just to travel around the world, to go to a nice city, to go here in Cincinnati in Kings Island Park with my girlfriend. I just want to enjoy it. When I'm like this, I know I can play well on court. I don't need to play too much tennis. I don't need to practice a lot. I just need to be good in my head. That's why this week was good work. When I'm ready to fight in my head, I think I can beat some very good players and I can be the Benoit Paire of before.”


Daniil Medvedev on the all-Russian semifinal with fellow Russian Andrey Rublev…

“I'm happy for the Russian semifinal. It's actually funny, because we played each other here in Cincinnati in (quarterfinals) two years ago. I think it was our first meeting on the ATP Tour. I played him one time in challenger before. Hopefully next time it's going to be a Russian final, because we had a Russian quarterfinal, a Russian semifinal now here in Cincinnati. Hopefully it can be a Russian final one day. I think it's good for the country. We continue to improve, continue to play well. Tomorrow of course we are rivals. I'm going to try to beat him. I'm sure he's going to try to beat me.”


Andrey Rublev on his semifinal match against fellow Russian Daniil Medvedev...

“I'm happy to play against him, because it's a nice challenge for me to see what I need to improve. I always improve after I lose to him. It's going to be close, like a chess match with long rallies. I need to fight for every ball. We'll see. It's going to be interesting.”