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October 30, 2014

Roger Federer


R. FEDERER/L. Pouille
6‑4, 6‑4

THE MODERATOR:  Questions in English, please.

Q.  I was wondering why you typically choose to receive instead of serve, like today?
ROGER FEDERER:  Today I felt like it.  You know, maybe it's still the beginning of the tournament so maybe I prefer to let the other guy have the honors.
Might be I'm nervous.¬† Some like come‑on‑show‑me‑what‑you‑have kind of thing.¬† But it didn't work out, so from that standpoint...
I received I think the first two matches.  You don't always get the choice.  See what happens in the next match.

Q.  Going back to the memory bank, can you remember a similar situation when you've got no experience whatsoever on a big stage, playing a big player.  Was there an instance where you had to do what he had to do?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yes.  I guess on a few occasions.  Basel '99 when I played Agassi.  That was his comeback year after he dropped.  He finished in the top 10 that year at the end.
Then Moya.  It was '98 actually against Agassi; '99 in Marseilles against Moya.  He was world No.4.  I got a wildcard into that.
Then I played Rafter at the French Open first round.¬† I also got a wildcard and won the first‑‑ broke first game.¬† Hmmm‑hmmm.
And then got broken back.  I won the set, but he crushed me.  That was a big moment.
So those three stand out to me.

Q.  Were you nervous in any of them?
ROGER FEDERER:  Probably from the Basel match just because I didn't want to lose really badly.  Agassi was the type of draw I didn't really want because I knew he had such an easy time finding my backhand.  Back then my backhand really wasn't that good.
I played a really good match actually.  I think I won five games and I was extremely happy with the way I played.

Q.  Andy qualified today for World Tour Finals.  From your perspective, how important do you think it is to have a local player in any sort of event, maybe from your experience in Basel, for ticket sales and overall health of an event?
ROGER FEDERER:  I think ticket sales are going on since a long time.  So from that standpoint I don't think it's going to change that much, but I think it's more exciting.  There's more news to it.  It's his home market.  It's a big deal.
But I think in itself it's a successful event.  It's usually always sold out more or less.  It's doing very well.  I think it's more exciting having Andy there.
I think it's a bit of a different feel this year.  Depends if Ferrer and Berdych are going to make it.  I don't know who is going to make it from those two guys but having Nishikori and Cilic there is a bit of a different twist.
And Stan of course again I think is very exciting.
THE MODERATOR:  Questions in French, please.

Q.  Yesterday you were saying that you needed to play a match against Lucas to know what his potential was.  What do you think?
ROGER FEDERER:  I don't remember the practice sessions I had with him, so I didn't remember whether I should play his backhand or forehand.
So during the match at certain stages I wasn't sure where I should play.  Unfortunately we didn't have long rallies in this match.  A lot was based on serve.
There I believe he was good.  It was difficult for me to read his serve.  He chips the ball well.  I like his technique.  And he's very fast.
He just needs to work hard, but he has the good spirit and mentality for this.  I think he needs to know that it's not Bercy every week.  Same for us.  It starts from scratch every week.  It's not easy, and there are many other good players on the tour.
He has to know all that and he has to like to travel and go beyond the challenger stage as soon as possible.  I understand anyway why he won those four matches.

Q.  It was a good style of game to prepare for Raonic?
ROGER FEDERER:  I don't know, but it's good that I didn't spend too much energy today.  I'm into the tournament.  I think after five sets you more or less know where you're standing.
Milos has a lot in his racquet.  I mean, the way he serves, the way he plays after that.  It's a tough match, but I'm looking forward to it.
There is a possible semifinal after that for both of us and also the London issue, so it's more fun.

Q.  I guess it's never easy to play against someone who is an idol for you.  It was the same for Dimitrov and Goffin.  What did you think?
ROGER FEDERER:  I don't know if I'm his idol, a super idol or just a favorite player for him.  I don't know.  "Idol" is a big word.  I don't know.  I don't know what to say.  It's strange for me.
There is a lot to lose in a match like this and there is little to win, so I tried to win the match if I can.  For the time being, I am able to win against those players, those rising players.  It was not always the case.
Anyway, they're all very nice.  I think Lucas is extremely nice.  He has a good attitude on the court.  It's good to see, whether I'm his idol or not.

Q.¬† We talked with the public, and the question they ask all the time about you is ‑‑ it has nothing to the match.¬† They say where did you meet your wife?¬† How and when?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, many people know that.  I've answered several times.  It was in the Olympics.  We had seen each other in Vienne at the International Tennis Center.  It was at the Olympics in 2000.  We spent a lot of time together, and that's it.
We didn't know what was going to happen after Sydney, but we liked each other and it started there.

Q.  Did you make the first step or did she?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, that's more private.  In the beginning of the Olympics I didn't know it was going to be that way, four kids and 15 years later, but I'm very happy it happened that way.

Q.  Another question:  There so many goals in the end of the season with the Davis Cup, Masters, et cetera, so how can you keep going?  How can you meet those goals?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, I just won against Pouille and I'm going to think about that.  I'm concentrating on the present moment.
No other choice.  I don't have to think about anything else.  I take things day after day.  I'm focused on Bercy.  I know I have a bit of rest after.
I know I have time to practice next week, but it'll depend on how tired I'll be after this tournament.  Or how well I feel.
Even with the jet lag I was able to play three days on clay and then I was able to practice again on hard courts to play Basel.  So it's just day after day.
But it's important to have goals at the end of the season like I have, because many journalists say the season is over.  Not at all.  There is still a lot happening, and I'm extremely motivated thanks to those goals.

Q.  You are very popular in France, like in many other places.  Some people think that in the Davis Cup in France maybe the crowd will not play its part.  They might also cheer for you.  Can you feel when you play the respect of the public and that respect might help your team there?
ROGER FEDERER:  In the end it's tennis.  It's not only in Davis Cup that you represent your country.  Journalists and people think you represent your country in Davis Cup only, but it's stupid.
We represent our country everywhere we play.  So for me, doesn't change much.  What will be interesting is that there will be 27,000 people, and I never experienced that.  I think every player wants to know that.  I hope it's going to be a good state of mind.
I think it's going to be a celebration for tennis, a good atmosphere.  Now, whether the crowd will support the French or not, great.  I just hope there will be a great atmosphere.
I already played in difficult atmospheres and in good atmospheres in the past.  As long as there is respect it's okay.  That's its way you will win.  Otherwise you will have a bad taste in your mouth.
Anyway, I believe it's going to be interesting.  Both teams are well balanced.  There are many good players in the French team, but in the Swiss team it's just Stan and me.  I think it's going to be a great weekend for everyone.
Yes, in the world I do have a lot support, and I appreciate that.  But I don't do a lot of shows or don't show off to get the support, so I don't know how to happens.  But it's that way.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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