August 26, 2003
NEW YORK CITY
MODERATOR: First question, please.
Q. What was the problem in the first set?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: He was playing well and I'm sick.
Q. What are you sick with?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: On Sunday, final in Long Island, I was playing there, then been playing a lot of matches that week and trying hard. And, you know, after that match I got sick that night and, you know, I sore my throat. It wasn't too bad. I didn't have a headache. I just have a problem when I'm breathing in the first set. So it was give me a tough time, so I have to ask for the doctor to give me some medicine.
Q. Do you think that's going to be a problem as the tournament goes ahead?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Well, I have one day off tomorrow. I gonna get a lot of rest today and, you know, going back, take sleep and take a pill. Hopefully I will getting better on Thursday.
Q. Must be happy it didn't go to a fifth set?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Yeah, I'm really happy that I pull it out in the fourth. I was up the break. He was coming back strong, but finally I pulled it in the tiebreaker.
Q. You had some early exits from some hard court tournaments this year. Was there ever a little bit of a fear there, going down in that first set 6-2?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: No, I still feeling like I could stay in this match, I mean, today. Even I lost the first set, I mean, because I'm kind of -- I know that I'm not feeling well today. Just go out there, let the first set go, then try to hang in there, just try to stay in the game and come back.
Q. This is the first time you've come to New York where I think a lot of the tennis fans here in the States are really getting to know who you are because of the way you've been playing. Does it feel different? Is it exciting to come to New York City and play in a tournament where people do know your name?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Yeah, of course it's more fun. You know, it's always great to have some support, especially from, you know, from your country. And the people, Thai people that live in the US, is a lot of people. Also some time I was playing in Europe, there's also some people coming out but not this much. It's always great to have good support, the people cheering for you. For the last couple tournaments in the US, I having a lot of fans (smiling).
Q. It looked like in that first set you started to get frustrated. What were you feeling?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Just, you know, got mad a little bit, why I'm sick today. I have trouble when I'm breathing. That's why I have to ask for the doctor give me some medicine and something that go, you know, going to my throat. Then is feel better.
Q. Were you frustrated that you'd played so well up to this point, to have something undermining you right at the moment when you needed to play your best?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Yeah, of course. If the player have to be -- all the player have to be 100 percent to go out there, I mean 110 to go out there and compete the game. But, you know, some day you can't just feel 100 percent or 110 percent, so you still have to go out there and try your best, see what's gonna happen. So I go out there and I know that I'm not feeling well, but I just gonna, you know, stay in the game and see, trying hard and see what I can do. I think I did it great today.
Q. Do you have any history of seasonal allergies? This is a time here in New York where the pollen level is very high. People like myself suffer from seasonal allergies from that. Has that bothered you before?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: No, no. No (smiling).
Q. Winning a tournament just before a Grand Slam, you have to guard against being overconfident when you go into a Slam. Are you having to guard against that?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: No, I mean, I won Long Island last week and I have one day off. Mine, I know the draw, who I gonna play at the US Open probably on Tuesday. So I'm still playing that tournament. I just keep that in mind, keep it behind. I just playing the tournament in Long Island and not even thinking about US Open and how I gonna play this guy. I just try my best every match and, you know... Then, after the final, I go, "Okay, my mind going to US Open." I say, "Okay, my next opponent is gonna be Saulnier from France." Then I start to think about the US Open.
Q. Do you think the experience you're having now with the cold will make you rethink playing a tournament the week before a major?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Well, I still gonna do it I think. Well, you don't know when you gonna get cold or, you know. It just hit me on Sunday, you know. You don't know.
Q. Was it bad enough for you to consider not being able to continue?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: You mean if...?
Q. When you were sick in the first set.
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Like I said, I still thinking that I, you know, could stay in this match because, you know, you have to use your heart to playing this game. I mean, if your body feels sick or you're tired, you still have to stay in there and finish the game. Even a loss, I'm not gonna retire. But I have to finish the game.
Q. You got off to such a good start this year. Obviously, as I said before, you come in here now, you're playing well.
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Yeah.
Q. What have you done? What's changed for you this year?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Well, I have a great start. Won the first tournaments in Chennai. Then make -- doesn't do too well. Just make semis in Miami. I mean, that's my biggest after that Chennai winning. Then after Miami, is gonna be clay court season which is not my best. But I use that season to practice my game for two months before Wimbledon and before coming to hard court in the US. So I use two months on clay, practicing my
groundstroke. I'm not doing well. I just winning two matches on clay. So I been practicing a lot, a lot of hours on clay, which is helping my game and helping my physical. I always doing that. So I think it's work really good.
Q. Which kind of players do you least enjoy playing? Which type of player?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Which type of player?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Well, I would say groundstroke. But if the guy coming to net, I have to try to pass.
Q. Do you enjoy defensive play rather than attacking play?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: I don't have much choice but, you know, if I have to play somebody, I try to play my game. The first thing, I try to play my game. I'm not thinking about my opponent that much.
Q. Hrbaty is your next opponent.
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: Yeah. I play him already three times. It is -- no, 2-1, he was up 2-1. Last time I play him in Wimbledon first round.
Q. What year?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: This year. And I lost to him in French Open first round. So, you know, back-to-back Grand Slam. French Open I lost to him in four sets and I won in Wimbledon against him in five sets. Gonna play him again second round US Open so, you know...
Q. Have you played him on hard courts?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: I played him on hard court two years ago in Tashkent. I lost to him. He's gonna be tough. I try to do my best.
Q. What are you gonna do different this time?
PARADORN SRICHAPHAN: I try to win the last point and try to holding my serve and it's gonna be -- I think it's gonna be good match because we both staying back. It's gonna be a lot of long rally. If we both get a short ball, we gonna coming in and finish it at the net.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.