LONDON, Great Britain - Svetlana Kuznetsova is the second-oldest player left in the Wimbledon draw - and what age has taught her is that she can't know everything.
"I think we learn every day," said the Russian when asked about her advantage in experience over Garbiñe Muguruza, her quarterfinal opponent. "Not only her. I learn. Everybody learn. Martina Navratilova still learning things. It's life and we cannot know everything."
The No.7 seed is also embracing uncertainty. She's aware that pundits have labelled grass as her worst surface for many years, but pointed out: "I don't want to call it best or worst surface on everybody. You never know, because me with age, I start to play better on grass."
Not that the opinions of others have ever bothered Kuznetsova, who's spent her life proving doubters wrong. "Look, I have been a while out here, and I have seen it all, and since I was kid they told me I'm never gonna be nowhere in the top," she recalled.
"So I'm used to that thing. It doesn't matter. You know, the importance is to understand that opinions don't matter. The matter is your game and you believe in yourself."
A frank Kuznetsova also broke down exactly why press conferences are dangerous to players trying not to overthink their games - read more in the WTA Insider Notebook. On the flipside, though, she has her American bulldog, Dolce - though he isn't with Kuznetsova in London, she describes him as "my emotional support animal" and makes sure to Skype him. "If you lose, your team go a little bit like sad. If you win, happy," she said. "My dog is always happy. Always the same. He's next to me.
Muguruza is also very aware of the opportunities granted by uncertainty. "Of course, a lot of players have more chances... maybe before was harder because there were other players that were controlling more," the Spaniard observed.
"But, yeah, everybody knows that. So we'll see who wants it more or who ends up earning the trophy."