Has someone ever told you that your surname “Begu” in Russian means “I am running”?
Yes, actually. And you know who? The father of Sasnovich told me about that.
Who of you two today made run the other more?
I think both of us ran a lot. It was am intense match with long rallies, so I mean you try to push your opponent and you try from the beginning to make each other run as much as possible.
We are watching right now Mertens playing against Sakkari. Mertens lost the first set on a tie-breaker. A pretty tough match. So with who of them you prefer to play your next match?
I don’t really care. They are two very good players. It is a semifinal in a big tournament so I am just really relaxed and I am enjoying the tournament. It doesn’t matter who will win, I know both of them well, I’ve played with them before. We will see after that who is the winner and as I said it doesn’t matter for me.
You were in the finals in Cleveland losing to Kontaveit in the finals – she is also playing in St. Petersburg. So just in case you face her, what you are going to do to beat her now and what memories do you have from Cleveland?
It is a little bit too far to think about the final. Every match is difficult, I will see if I get there. Cleveland was a very good tournament for me, I played some good tennis there. I was coming off a difficult period and I was starting to get my rhythm back, to find my game. I have good memories from Cleveland. I have met a lot of Romanian fans there who were cheering for me. It was a good week and hopefully here I can to get to the final, too.
Why so many Romanians were there?
There is a big Romanian community there and, as I said, there were so many and the atmosphere was incredible for me the whole week. I was celebrating also my birthday over there, so it was a nice week for me.
You have titles and finals on clay and hard courts. So what surface is your favorite?
I grew up on clay, I play very well on clay. But, you know, WTA is holding so many tournaments on hard, so my opinion is split, like fifty-fifty, I would say. I don’t really care whether I play on clay or on hard. As I said, there are so many tournaments on hard now and I adapted my game to the hard surface. So I don’t really mind playing on hard or on clay. I won many ITF tournaments on clay, but I also claimed 3 WTA titles on hard, so it doesn’t matter.
Your favorite tournament is in Marbella, as says your profile?
I think the profile was made like ten years ago. But there so many good tournaments in WTA and I cannot choose just one. And St.Petersburg is one of my favorites. I cannot choose one, they are all special. I think I have to change a bit my profile from ten years ago. But that tournament in Marbella was a good one for me, that was the first WTA final I reached coming off the qualifications. It is also a good tournament with good organization and nice views and everything, it is quite unique.