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Sabalenka: It's exciting to play against USA in Fed Cup Final

Belarus will take on the formidable USA team in the Fed Cup final on November 11-12. Ahead of the tie, the Belarusian girls have answered questions about preparation and feelings.

- Have you previously met with the leaders of the US team CoCo Vandeweghe and Sloane Stephens, are you familiar with the style of their game?

Aryna Sabalenka: Personally, I never played against them, but I watched some matches with these girls. They are very aggressive high-level sportswomen. It's exciting to play against them.

Aliaksandra Sasnovich: I never played against CoCo Vandeweghe, but once I met Sloane Stephens. It was two years ago, and much has changed since then. Today, my rival and I perform at a higher level, we have become more professional and more experienced.

- Aliaksandra, it was a difficult and successful season. What are the feelings about the fact that the Fed Cup final will draw a line under this season?

Sasnovich: I really like to play for my native country, the Federation Cup has already become a special tournament for me. I look forward to the final matches. All Belarusian fans come to support us, parents and family are nearby, there is always a wonderful atmosphere. It's very cool, and I want to plunge into this process again and again.

- Is playing at home a big advantage for the Belarusian team?

Sabalenka: We hope that there will be even more fans, even more than at the semifinals. Support and such a powerful charge of faith is very helpful for us.

- Aliaksandra, did people begin to ask you more often for a photo or for an autograph? How do you feel about that?

Sasnovich: It's very pleasant for me. I like to communicate with people and, of course, play tennis and please my fans with good results.

- Mr Dubrou [Belarus head coach], we all know the rating of the Belarusians. Aryna Sabalenka is WTA No78, Aliaksandra Sasnovich is 87th, but at the same time we remember how Sasnovich begins matches this year and brings Belarus the first point. Does it mean that the tradition will change?

Dubrou: Sasha not only this year brought us the first points, she started at all years. I would not like to change the tradition. This is some kind of draw, and if so, the outcome must be positive. This is already a kind of good sign.

Sasnovich: There has never been a time when I did not start first.

SEE: USA Team press conference

- Vera [Lapko] and Lida [Marozava], you have never played together in the doubles before. How is that to train together on the court before such an important encounter? Is it difficult to prepare for such a short period of time?

Lapko: We planned to play with Lida one tournament before the Federation Cup. That is, we planned to spend a little time there in such "match atmosphere." But since our federation wanted us to see at the training session with the team, we started training here. So far we have been training and playing. I personally like everything. I even learn something from Lida, too, because she still plays doubles more often.

Marozava: I've known Vera a very long time. We've known each other, probably since childhood. In fact, I began to train with her brother in one group. From the very beginning, we have had good, warm relations with her. I am comfortable with this person - mentally, on the court, outside the court. We have worked out a lot of good options for our doubles match. Therefore, we are ready. If we have such an opportunity to go to the court and bring the team a point, we are ready for anything.

SEE: Fun facts about Aryna Sabalenka

Lapko: We are eager to play that match. We know the [Chizhovka] arena will be packed with fans and tickets are sold out. This match will be at home and this is important for us. I hope the top officials will also come to root for us, since they are watching our preparations. Everyone is ready for the tie.

MORE: 

Belarus v USA Fed Cup Final 2017: Team USA chances

 

Sabalenka, Sasnovich give press conference ahead of Fed Cup Final against USA