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March 9, 1995

Pete Sampras


Q. Pete, how did you feel out there today?

PETE SAMPRAS: I felt good to finally win the tiebreaker. Haven't won one this year. I felt I hit the ball pretty well. The conditions with the air being so dry here is pretty fast. He is a good player; serves well; returns well; is one of the better doubles players in the world and I really needed to be at my best. I thought I played a pretty solid match. I lost a little concentration in the second; got down a break, but there was only one break; played a good break; unfortunately, doublefaulted at a bad time, but I played a good matchpoint. It was a good one to get through. You are not going to get a lot of rhythm out there; someone like Bjorkman, so I played Patrick Rafter now who plays pretty similarly, so hopefully I can play a little bit better tomorrow.

Q. Pete, the tournament obviously began on Monday. Was it tough to sit out three days and not play until Thursday?

PETE SAMPRAS: I played doubles yesterday, so I got a little bit used to the court and the balls and so I feel like I played -- playing doubles was a good decision even though I lost 6 in the third. Usually don't have Thursday starts, but with the Monday final here I felt it was okay.

Q. Pete, you just mentioned about the tiebreaker. Going into the tiebreaker in the first set, what were your thoughts having not won one this year.

PETE SAMPARS: It was in the second set.

Q. Sorry.

PETE SAMPRAS: You just can't think about it. You can't think about the ones that I have lost. You just have to basically not think about it and it is tough sometimes. You just have to play each point like it is an important point and that is what a tiebreaker really can come down to, a point here and there and got him today. I just can't think about the record and not worry about it.

Q. Was there a reason you had been struggling in those tiebreakers earlier this year until now?

PETE SAMPRAS: Just lost two tough ones to Courier and lost a tough one against Todd after being up 5-1. It is just -- you just can't worry about it. You just have to not think about when you get into that situation. It is just bad luck, you know, hopefully, I can winning one today; hopefully can really turn it around.

Q. You have had some tough matches against Pat Rafter in the past. What are your thoughts going into that match?

PETE SAMPARS: Well, I need to make him play a lot of volleys; need to return well. Obviously, I need to be solid on my games, service games; not playing any loose points. Very similar match like I played this morning; they both play pretty similar. Hopefully I can return little bit better than he can. Hopefully break him down.

Q. You feel it has been a rather trying year for you so far?

PETE SAMPRAS: It has been a couple of strange months as far as the Australian Open, the experience down there and the last couple of weeks of -- you know, it has been a little different. There have been a lot of changes kind of going around me and I just have to get through it and it looks like I won't be with Tim for quite sometime. He is back home in Chicago. That has been a little bit difficult, but I will get through it.

Q. Pete, as far as coaching goes is there a big difference between Tim not being around and Paul -- is Paul helping you coachwise?

PETE SAMPRAS: Well, I think Paul is a good friend of mine; a good friend of Tim. He is trying to make this whole situation as easy for Tim and I as possible, and he and Tim talk about my game and what I need to work on, it's a team effort. It is not like Paul is moving in on me. He is a great guy and got a great character, and it looks like I will be going with him for quite awhile, because Tim is going to be receiving some treatment. But they do have pretty similar philosophies. They think I should come in more and stuff like that. They will be in contact for a while and just see what I need to work on when I am off the road and on the road.

Q. Along those lines, how much do you attribute, -- what exactly do you attribute Brad Gilbert's contribution to Andre? Do you see things that obviously came from coaching?

PETE SAMPARS: Well, I don't see anything in his game that is different. I mean, he is pretty much playing the same type of game. I think Brad has maybe got him a little bit more disciplined with practicing and preparing for his matches, playing maybe a bit more smarter because obviously Brad was a pretty smart guy on the court. Just him being there, I think, I am sure has helped him out, but I don't think there is anything specific in his game that he is doing differently. He is just doing a lot better.

Q. Pete, is it is any easier now for you knowing that Tim is not going to be with you next week or expecting him to be there next week that you can now maybe settle down a little bit more and concentrate on-the-job at hand?

PETE SAMPARS: I think it will. I think there is -- at Australia, we weren't really sure what was going to go on and who I was going to be with or --- kind of a strange time for me because everything just had been going so smooth for the past three years and I talked to Tim everyday, if not every day, every other day, and it is just trying to help him get through this whole thing. Hopefully, he can beat this, and so now I pretty much understand what is going on and he has told me everything and Paul will be traveling with me for as long as it takes for Tim to really get back on his feet.

Q. I asked Jim the same question, so I am not singling you out for punishment. If you don't play Davis Cup, will you feel guilty about it?

PETE SAMPARS: Well, let us put it this way. I have yet to make my final decision, so there is still a little time to think about it and maybe before you know it, I might decide to play.

Q. There has been talk about the possibility of this event becoming a men's and women's Lipton-type event. What would be your thoughts about that?

PETE SAMPARS: Well, I don't want to say anything that is going to get me in trouble. With the grounds here, you know, it is not -- there is a lot of people around. I'd prefer rather to play a men's tournament.

Q. Are you sure you want to say that? You don't want to play the women? You'd do well.

PETE SAMPRAS: I would. I think with the size of the place, I think one event is plenty. Okay.

End of FastScripts...

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