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July 28, 2010

Andy Murray

THE MODERATOR: We can go ahead and start. Just general information. Andy is the top seed in this week's Farmers Classic Presented by Mercedes-Benz. He's making his debut here in L.A. It's his first tournament since reaching the semifinals at Wimbledon for the second straight year. He's enjoyed great success in California, winning San Jose in 2006 and 2007, reaching the finals of Indian Wells in 2009. Andy is 14-7 in finals, reaching his first Grand Slam final at the US Open in 2008 where he lost to Federer. This year he was the runner-up at the Australian Open.
In 2009 he compiled his best season capturing the ATP World Tour Best Six Title and reaching a personal best No. 2 for four weeks before finishing No. 4 for the second straight year. The last Brit to play here at the Farmers Classic Presented by Mercedes-Benz was Bogdanovic in 2007 and Murray is looking to be the first British man to be into the quarterfinals since 2004.
With that said, we can go ahead and start with questions.

Q. Andy, I think it was yesterday you were parting company with your coach, Miles Maclagan. The management company said this was following revealing of your coaching need. Just wondered what you feel you need from a coach which Miles was not bringing.
ANDY MURRAY: It wasn't necessarily something that Miles wasn't bringing. We had a chat when we were at Miami about how he saw things, the way the current structure was working with Miles and Alex together, obviously Miles doing a lot more weeks than Alex. We all saw things pretty differently.
It was obviously a hard decision and one that wasn't the nicest thing to have to take. But, you know, it wasn't that, that tough to make up my mind because we were quite far apart in what we thought.

Q. What were you thinking and what was he seeing? Where was the difference that you couldn't cross?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I don't want to go into too much detail about what was said. It was obviously a private meeting.
We had, between the three of us, just obviously different ideas and different ways of seeing things, what I felt was beneficial to me and what Miles and Alex felt was beneficial to me.
You know, obviously the last few years have gone very, very well. But I want to look to improve and become better, try and get to No. 1 in the world, try and win Grand Slams.
I need to be comfortable in the setup that I have and the structure that I have, have a hundred percent confidence that everyone that's working with me believes it's the right thing to do. That's it.

Q. Before you met with Miles, you said when you wanted to form Team Murray, as it were, you wanted a lot of input from different guys. Are you just looking to replace a team member or two?
ANDY MURRAY: I think people got carried away with the amount of people they thought that I was working with.
But the reason why I did it in the first place is because I spent the first three years on the tour working with individually just one coach. I had no fitness trainer that traveled with me at all. I had no physio that traveled with me at all. I had some injuries. I wasn't enjoying my time on tour as much as I should have been. I thought that was down to spending so much time with one coach.
I found it very, very stressful, you know, because it puts a lot of strain. Obviously, you have a personal relationship, but at the end of the day it is a business one. I found it quite difficult. I didn't want to travel with five or six people at the same time, I just wanted to keep things fresh. If somebody was getting a little bit tired throughout the year, there was someone else there to come in and help and have some different ideas.
It's something that I think has worked well. There's always going to be disputes. I think two and a half years is quite a long relationship on the tour. I obviously was working with both Miles and Alex for that time, as well. So I don't think it would change the way that I view that sort of structure. If you have the right people in place, they can work together.

Q. What do you need to do? You talked about winning Grand Slams and being No. 1.
ANDY MURRAY: I don't think I need to make huge changes in my game. I just need to become a better player all around. Obviously I had good results against Federer. I've beaten Nadal a couple of times in slams. I've been to the latter stages of quite a few slams.
I think it's easy to start overthinking things and overanalyzing things to try and find: Is there actually a problem there? I don't think there's a problem with my game. I just need to get better. That's something that maybe hasn't happened the last four or five months, something that hopefully by getting a new coach and a new sort of coaching team in place, that will help me do that, and hopefully achieve my goals.

Q. Wimbledon was obviously a big tournament for you. You played really well. I'm wondering, in general, are you a little bit impatient with your results at all this year? Can you talk about that a bit.
ANDY MURRAY: Well, it has been a difficult year. Obviously Wimbledon and the Australian Open have been great. Apart from that, it's not been so good.
You know, the sort of 18 months previous, before sort of Miami this year, I hadn't really played a bad tournament for a long, long time. I got into a little bit of a rut. I had a few bad tournaments.
It's not necessarily a patience thing. Now I feel good again. I feel confident after the way Wimbledon went. I kind of saw what the problems were, what I needed to do to get back to playing top-three, top-four tennis again. I addressed it. I'm hoping I have another good hard court stretch in the States.

Q. But not winning any titles this year has not been a source of frustration, or it has been?
ANDY MURRAY: We obviously want to win at Grand Slams. That's what my goal is. You know, I obviously was close at the Australian Open, a little bit further away at Wimbledon. But, you know, it was still a good tournament.
If I wanted to win titles, and that was the most important thing to me, I'd be playing a lot more tennis than I have done this year. I'd be playing more and more tournaments to try to do that.
But I said at the start of the year, I wanted to try my best to play my best tennis at the Grand Slams. Maybe I lost the direction a little bit when I was playing in the Masters Series and whatnot at the beginning of the year.
But, you know, the slam results have been good. I just need to make sure I'm prepared very well for the Masters Series, as well, because they're incredibly difficult tournaments to win. Obviously, I have to play my best tennis to win them.
That's why I'm out here right now trying to prepare as well as I can for them. If I didn't want to prepare properly, I'd still be at home practicing indoors in the cold weather. Wouldn't be away from my friends and family.

Q. Do you consider the three hard court tournaments you have coming up, leading up to the US Open, including the Open, is this the toughest stretch of the year on you physically because of the weather and the hard courts? How rested and ready are you for that?
ANDY MURRAY: I feel pretty rested. It can depend on obviously the weather. The weather can play a huge part in that. I've played some days in Cincinnati where it's been some of the most brutal conditions throughout the year. Obviously, the US Open can get very hot, too. So it can be.
It is one of the toughest stretches. The clay court stretch is very difficult. Also, you know, Australia. The buildup to all of the slams are very tough physically and mentally. That's why a lot of the top guys take quite long breaks after the slams 'cause, you know, you need to let yourself recover.

Q. Can you talk about the physicality of tennis today, especially coming into the US Open after playing for eight months of the year, the summer, a lot of hard courts, how taxing that is on the body.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, it's tough. I mean, for all of the guys I think it kind of depends what surface you grew up playing on. I grew up playing on hard court, so I don't find it as tough on the body as the clay, whereas someone like Nadal might find clay a lot easier on his body. I find it's more natural for me to move on the hard courts.
But it is. I mean, it's not just on the hard. Tennis nowadays is one of the most physically demanding sports. Obviously, you need a little bit of everything in terms of endurance, speed, strength. Yeah, it's an incredibly difficult sport now. Everybody, by the end of the year, is asking for more time off, longer breaks to let us recover.
If there's any sort of problems that we have sorted like right now, it's sort of difficult to find three or four weeks in the year where you can just take time off. That's why tennis is such a physically demanding sport now, that a lot of guys are trying their best to try to shorten the season, even if it's just by one or two weeks, because it's so long now.

Q. You've been a successful visitor to California over the years. You never played in this week's event. What is your decision behind that?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I was over in Miami training. The conditions over there have been really, really brutal. It's incredibly hot, very humid. I've spent a lot of time training over there, in the past as well. I got the call to see if I wanted to come. I'd never been to L.A. before. Obviously Djokovic pulled out. I spoke to the guys, decided I wanted to come over here and spend a few days training.
Obviously, the weather here is pretty much perfect conditions. It's not too hot, not a cloud in the sky. I'll just train here for a few more days after the tournament. I might stay here until Toronto. I think that's why.

Q. Can you just talk about your opening-match opponent.
ANDY MURRAY: I saw him play quite a few times in the juniors. We were the same age. We played quite a few of the junior slams together. You know, he's obviously I think playing some of the best tennis of his career just now. He's not that tall, I think only 5'7", 5'8". He's very quick, doesn't make too many mistakes.
You know, it's a match that I'll have to be switched on for at the start because, obviously, haven't played a whole lot the last few weeks. He'll make it difficult for me.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you, Andy. Thank you, everyone, for joining the call. Andy will begin his Farmers Classic Presented by Mercedes-Benz Thursday night at 7:30.

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