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August 14, 1998

Vincent Spadea


Q. You didn't seem to be terribly overpowered, but he won fairly easily. Did you feel like you had any chance at all during that match after you were broken the first time?

VINCE SPADEA: He doesn't let you get your racquet on the ball. He didn't let me get a lot of hits at returns, for some reason. I don't know what his first serve percentage was, but I didn't feel like I was getting any rhythm on his serve or even any exercise. On my serve, I just got kind of sloppy. You know, I just wasn't -- I felt a little bit heavy on my feet. I just wasn't hitting my shots right. I mean, it was just a matter of just trying to hold serve against him. He usually serves that well. 21 something matches. But guys that can keep holding their serve, and try to win tiebreakers, I just didn't come close to even doing that.

Q. You played some top players this week. They're not Pete Sampras. Can you talk about the difference between playing those guys and Pete?

VINCE SPADEA: I mean, you know, he's very -- the thing is, I played three tough matches going into this. I wasn't exactly, you know, totally like -- I mean, I was confident and fit to play, but I just -- you know, I mean, to play three guys in a row ranked 2, 8 and 9, they're going to soften you up a little bit, a couple of them. They're going to take something out of you. I mean, how many tournaments do you play, even in Grand Slams, where you're playing guys ranked that high consecutively? Maybe if you play a Grand Slam, you have to do that in the quarters, finals and the semis or something, you know, if it really -- but I would say my draw here wasn't exactly the most, you know, favorable in terms of that. Especially where the three players, all three players I played excel dramatically in Cincinnati and on hard courts. They play some of their best tennis of their careers here. You know, here I am, you know, battling and winning the majority of the points.

Q. When you look back on this tournament, pretty successful, and look ahead, what do you think looking ahead now after this?

VINCE SPADEA: Yeah, I mean, it's a step in the right direction. It's probably my biggest -- you know, it's my biggest accomplishment this year in a Super 9. I did make the finals in an ATP, but I wasn't -- it didn't have -- it was a different surface and so on. But it's definitely one of the top tournaments that I've had. Those are the things I've been looking for. And last week I had another big win. So, I mean, yeah, you have to look for the good in everything. You can't just -- you know, there's nothing negative at this point.

Q. When Pete plays like this, who can beat him?

VINCE SPADEA: I mean, I don't usually watch his matches, so I don't know his level of play in comparison to today. But I thought maybe that it was probably an up or an on day for him, you know, to speculate. Obviously, you know, I've played him before and I don't remember being in that situation. But also I usually played him in earlier rounds and so on. But that was maybe a little bit more like in check or ready to go, I don't know. But I don't know. I mean, it seems like that's -- you know, obviously he wins all those tournaments, and he was showing with his serve how he does it. You know, I'm probably a better-than-average returner. You know, I usually -- I mean, yesterday I read Krajicek's serve pretty well. He has one of the top, you know, five serves in the game. Also, had an off day. Look at yesterday. I mean, here is a Wimbledon Champion losing to a guy who's, you know, like me, who is like not a Wimbledon Champion. So, I mean, for me, to loose to the No. 2 player in the world in that fashion, it's just another day in the office that occurred, kind of bad timing. Something called the US Open. The sun comes up, you know most of the days afterwards.

Q. Maybe in Florida.

VINCE SPADEA: That's true.

Q. Kind of refreshing to have people pull for you?

VINCE SPADEA: Yeah. Being here in Cincinnati has been great. I've definitely seen a big difference in my fan support when I come here, in particular. You know, that helps you when you're out there with the adversity. Cincinnati, come back to Cincinnati.

Q. Do you have a little bit of a feeling of shell-shock?

VINCE SPADEA: Shell-shock?

Q. When you play a match, and he was that on.

VINCE SPADEA: I don't know what it looked like on TV or from the spectators' standpoint, but, I mean, you know, my service games, you know, were way below average. I don't think even my first serve percentage was that high. I wasn't really -- I wasn't feeling explosive on my serve or my first shot afterwards. It was like kind of a dull feeling for me, when it should have been kind of the opposite. I should have, you know -- but you also hit pretty heavy shots in these courts. You know, the ball's coming close to the line. You know what I mean? And, you know, he's playing an attacking style, which is different to my style.

End of FastScripts....

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