July 7, 2000
MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. What are your feelings now?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Well, it's difficult to say, to be honest. I think that it was a good run for me here. I'm actually pretty satisfied with the way the match went on today. I felt comfortable in the rallies. I enjoyed it. I tried to fight, but he was just too good. I mean, I didn't have one chance on his serve, except for the tiebreaker in the first set where things could go either way, I guess.
Q. Will you still be haunted by that backhand volley in the tiebreak?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: No, I forgot about it. I mean, I guess these things are decided somewhere else. I mean, you can't practise it. In the practise, you probably hit a hundred out of a hundred like that. You miss one there. I guess it's the nerves.
Q. It was sort of a crucial moment if you put that away.
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: You never know. Then it would be 5-All. I would still have to hold one serve, then Pete would serve. As I said, it could get anywhere from that moment. Let's put it this way, I guess.
Q. Was it a typical match for you to do that much diving and rolling on the grass?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I guess to beat Pete, you have to do something special. I just felt that it was, you know, the ball is there, if you can't get there by your feet, then you have to jump. It also looks good.
Q. Was it intimidating to step on Centre Court for the first time?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Of course. Come on, guys. Of course, it's a great experience for me. But I really came out there and tried to concentrate on my performance. I'm happy with the way I was out there.
Q. Did you have the sense that the crowd was in your corner?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I think crowd was on both sides. They were just trying to enjoy it. Both of us did our best.
Q. Can you talk about trying to return his serve and how hard he is to break?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: It's very hard to break his serve (smiling). I tried to change my position a few times. I got him to serve second, but then I don't know what to do with his second serve. It's difficult. I guess with players like Pete, you have to wait for your moment. Chances against him don't come around very often, and you have to take it. I think perhaps, as I said, some things could go different in the first set tiebreaker, and then you have to wait.
Q. What is it about his serve? There's a lot of guys who can hit as hard as he does, but he holds so many of his games. Is it the action in the spin or can you not read where he's going?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I guess it must be a power and a spin combined because a few times I had read it and I went forehand, the ball just jumped here (indicating up at his head). "Where is it coming from?" It must be the speed. The speed, you have to get to a level where you just play with a reflex. You cannot think where you're going to do with the return. You just stay out there. If you're lucky enough to catch it in front of you, put it somewhere, it's good.
Q. Was there something special, specific for your preparation for this particular game?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Not really. I just tried to keep the routine that I was in all the matches before. Of course, this was always going to be something special. I don't know, just try to keep the routine.
Q. Who did you practise with yesterday?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: No, yesterday I didn't get my hit. I didn't feel like practising yesterday.
Q. You didn't want to practise?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: No.
Q. Have you enjoyed your little spell of fame, being the centre of attention?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: In the beginning, you enjoy it, but then of course you have to try to make sure that it doesn't get too disturbing. I'm always ready to be here with the press, but you make sure that you concentrate on performance, first of all.
Q. Can you catch us up to date on the clothes saga?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: A few companies -- not a few companies. One company approached me, and they said if I'm interested in wearing their clothes for this match with some bonus for it. The question was if they're interesting (sic) in a longer term deal. They said they would have to think. I thought that this is not good for me. I just stick to the clothes that I had before.
Q. So you wore the same thing you wore in the semifinal?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Yeah. I washed it, of course (laughter).
Q. You've been very modest in your approach. You said nothing is going to change. Reaching the semis of Wimbledon is obviously a big step. Who is going to be guiding you from here, other than the ATP Tour?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: First of all, of course, it's going to be my father. He's going to be the one helping me out when I need to make some difficult decision. I'm going to speak to him definitely. I think he's going to try to make sure that I make decisions, you know, because this is the age where you have to learn to see what's good for you and to make sure that you answer for yourself, for your actions.
Q. Are you still planning to play in Bristol next Tuesday?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: No, not really. I think I already pulled out because it would be too much for me. We have Davis Cup in two weeks. I just didn't feel like I'm going to have enough power. Plus I want to make sure that my shoulder rests.
Q. How will you spend your prize money now? Are you going to celebrate with purchasing something?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I'll think about it. I don't know. I don't have any great ideas now yet.
Q. You were talking about buying a Mercedes?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I said that I like the car a lot, but I'm not going to buy it yet.
Q. The sports company that you were talking about, was that Sergio Tachini?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I cannot say, sorry.
Q. Who do you like to win in the final?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Who would I like to win in the final?
Q. Who do you think will win?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Pat is playing unbelievable tennis right now. I saw a little bit of his match against Andre. He was very good. But I think it's a matter of how good Pete is going to return. I guess in the rallies from the back, Pete is better. But, again, I think he lost to him maybe once or twice. It's going to be a mental game, as well. With the way Pete is serving, I don't know, it's going to be tough for Pat.
Q. Did you sense at all that he was struggling with this injury?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Pete?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: I don't know. He seemed to run okay today.
Q. Has this raised your confidence level about what you're capable of doing?
VLADIMIR VOLTCHKOV: Yes, it definitely showed me. As I said before the match with Pete, it would be very interesting for me to compare on what level I am. I was very pleased with the way I played today from the baseline. I stayed in the rally well. I felt like I'm not losing to him in this aspect. But I'm going to have to work a lot on my serve and return. But this is something you can work on.
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