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May 11, 2001

Andreas Vinciguerra

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Journalists like me, we are used to asking long questions to Swedish guys and to receive short answers. How can you shock us, showing that you are half Italian, saying something incredibly new and strange about your personality, about your things you do outside tennis, about your opinion about this world? What can you say about it?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: About what I'm doing?

Q. Something strange about Vinciguerra.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: About Vinciguerra. Phew... Something strange about myself, what I am doing off the court?

Q. Yes, whatever. Something we don't know.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Something you don't know. I think you know almost ... I'm practicing. When I'm not playing tennis, I have fun with my friends.

Q. What sort of fun?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: We have some -- like a year ago, we didn't have so much to do, and then we have war with eggs once. That's little bit strange. But it was fun at that time.

Q. Where was that?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: In Sweden, in our hometown. Yeah, we brought twelve eggs each, and then war.

Q. In England, we are very happy to take Canadian players and call them our own. It appears that a lot of Italians are now thinking you're half Italian and maybe their own. What do you think about that?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I think I have little bit Italian blood in me. I think because my father's Italian, and I've been to Italy a lot when I was younger, so I think I have a little bit Italian blood inside.

Q. Does it inspire you to come and play here?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Yeah, I like Italy. I mean, it's a nice country. I enjoy it -- I'm enjoying to play here in Italy. I mean everything is good here. It's like my second home.

Q. Any of your Italian relations on your father's side, are they here watching you?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: No, they are living in Sicily.

Q. Too far?


Q. Have you been surprised at your success here this week?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Yeah. I'm happy. Of course I'm surprised that I'm in semis now, but I have some feeling before -- before tournament that maybe I can do something good here, because I played very good in practice and I played good last week, too. So I have some feelings that I could play good. But to a semis, there was maybe somewheres...

Q. Do you enjoy to play tennis or to win tennis?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: To win, of course I'm enjoying tennis. I love to play tennis. Of course it's much funnier when you're winning than if you lose. But I am enjoying playing tennis almost, yeah, almost every day. But sometimes it's tough to. If you play very much, it's tough, you know. You have to rest a little bit some time. I mean, you are tired to play. But right now I am enjoying it.

Q. You haven't played Davis Cup for Sweden, have you?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Yeah, I played in -- last summer in Bastad against India.

Q. All right. So that stops the next question. How old were you when you started, and what brought you into tennis? Also, was it Swedish players that inspired you most or players from other parts of the world?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I started to play when I was six and seven years old because, like, 20 meters from our house we had a tennis court for , I mean, everybody. Then there was a lot of people play there. Then one day I start to play with my friends. Then at that time I played soccer, too. And then I started to play in a tennis club, and then I thought it was very fun. And since then, I've played tennis.

Q. Which players did you admire most at that time? Who were the ones that made the most impact on you?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: At that time I watched a lot on Edberg and Becker, and it was -- that was the two player that I watched a lot. I mean, there was very big at the time. They are great players.

Q. Did you meet all of them when you were very young, before you were playing tennis seriously?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: No. The first time I met Edberg was for like two years ago, I think.

Q. What did you play in football, what was your role? What was your position?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: My position, I was striker.

Q. Where is the Italian in you, in your personality? What part of your personality is definitely Italian?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: It's sometimes I can be very angry. I mean... That's maybe... But it was worse when I was younger. I was more crazy than now I think.

Q. If somebody speaks Italian, do you understand? Are you able to understand, a little bit?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: When I was younger, I understand almost everything. But now, I have not been to Italy for -- I mean, I was here last year in Rome, too. But when I was younger I was in Italy every year, then I learned a lot. But now I can understand pretty much, but next year in that time I hope I can speak Italian next time.

Q. Why do you think in the past it was Sweden that was the leading nation, now it's Spain? What is your opinion? Why is the reason?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: You mean younger players?

Q. No, professional tennis.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Yeah, I think -- I mean Spain, they are very good. There are so many players that play very good tennis. And I think one of the thing is that, I mean, they have a lot of tournaments in Spain. They have much Satellites and they have ATP tournaments, and they can be home and play Satellites and get points. I mean, in Sweden, we have two Futures and one or two ATP tournaments. So it's tough, I mean, for players. They need money to go to play, and it's tough. But of course Spain have many players now. But I think Sweden have -- I mean if we had, like, so many Satellites like Spain, we maybe have so good players, too. So it's tough to, I mean, to traveling, you need sponsors and money. So it's tough.

Q. You were a very good Juniors player. What were your expectations when you arrived on the ATP Tour? Is it as easy or as difficult as you thought it would be?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: When I was Junior, you're ranked Top 5, you thought you were very good, you go like this (indicating up). But it's very tough. It's differences. When you come from Junior to Seniors, I mean the Seniors don't know you and they just play and it's very tough. I mean, it's a tempo and more speed. I mean, you have to be -- for me, I have a little bit -- I mean at the beginning, it went like this for me (indicating up). I played very good. But it was tough at that time, too. I lost a lot of matches at the beginning, so it was good for me that I lost, you know, to maybe have your feets on the ground again.

Q. Any preference for your next opponent?


Q. Any preference.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Is, I mean, Kuerten or Corretja is, I don't know, they are -- they both are very good. They're very good players. But I played Kuerten once, and that match I don't want to talk about. (Laughter.)

Q. How much publicity does tennis get in Sweden these days, because there was a time when maybe five or six Swedish journalists were at most tournaments. Now we don't see many of them.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: No, right now is not that much. I mean, I don't -- I don't really know, because I mean we have good tennis players in Sweden, but they are not -- in the newspapers, they are standing -- I mean they are writing a little bit, just notes. But is -- I hope it's getting better because I think we need it in Sweden.

Q. Are these matches being seen on television in Sweden?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: These matches, no.

Q. Your matches?


Q. If somebody gave you a box of eggs and said, you know, you can throw them at anybody you like, I mean apart from me, who would you pick to throw them at? Have you any people in mind?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: No, no, no. That was a stupid thing. I don't think I am going to do it again. No.

Q. When you watch some Over-35 matches, what do you think about these old men playing another game, another sort of game?


Q. You watch on television or in Indian Wells or Key Biscayne, Over-35 matches.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Over-35, you mean players like Wilander?

Q. Yes.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I'm not -- I mean, before I went to Munich last week, I saw one tape of Wilander against Lendl in Paris. I mean, of course it was a little bit slower speed, but they played good. I mean, they thought a lot on the court.

Q. What relatives do you still have in Sicily?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I still have my cousins and my father's brothers.

Q. Do you think you will have more support from the Italians because you have some Italian blood in you, now that you're going into the semifinals and then maybe further forward?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I don't know. It's fun when you have the people behind you, but I don't know. Maybe. I hope so.

Q. You said you had a very good feeling coming here with your game. What do you do better right now than the previous weeks?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I think, I mean, a lot of is confidence, you know. When you have confidence, I mean everything is sometimes going in. I mean, I don't think I play so much better now than I did last week, but right now I am more -- much more confidence.

Q. No reason? It just came like that?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: No, maybe I play a little bit heavy, I get more speed on the ball.

Q. The balls are better for you this week?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: Yeah, I think so. They are heavy, heavy balls this week.

Q. What area in Sicily does your father come from?


Q. What's your favorite meal in your father's restaurant?

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: My dad's restaurant?

Q. Yeah. What is your favorite? You go there, what do you eat?

Q. Only if you can say in Italian. (Laughter.)

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: I think it's... It's tough. It's tough.

Q. You have time.

ANDREAS VINCIGUERRA: If I'm going, I think I will eat -- right now, if I'm going right now, I think I would eat one scampi fritti. That's good.

End of FastScripts....

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