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August 5, 2004

Andre Agassi


THE MODERATOR: Andre advances to his sixth quarterfinal here in Cincinnati. He has a 2-1 record against Carlos Moya. Also for the first time in tournament history, five former No. 1s in the quarterfinals here. Questions for Andre.

Q. You certainly recovered nicely. What was with those two double-faults in your first service game? Did you feel like you were getting into a hole right there?

ANDRE AGASSI: No (smiling). No, that was, you know -- I mean, certainly as you look back on the match, the first couple games we both had chances. But from that point on I felt good about my shots and took my chances and managed to keep the lead from start to finish.

Q. Seemed like you were playing pretty fast out there. Some place to go or just wanted to make sure you got it over with quick?

ANDRE AGASSI: No, there are times you play faster than others. It sort of depends on the nature of the match. Everybody has to play to the server's pace, so you sort of determine if you have the momentum and you try to keep it going. And if you don't, you try to slow it down. But tonight I felt real good. It's the first match in a long time where I felt that comfortable with my game.

Q. Why do you think that is? Because you've played the last couple days?

ANDRE AGASSI: Because I've had some matches. I mean, you know, it's a big confidence issue out there. You have to believe in what you're doing because a match is decided on just a few points. And, you know, finally having a few matches in a row is starting to help me feel more comfortable out there.

Q. How long has it seemed like since you had this kind of feeling then? Earlier in the year or...

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, no, I played some good tennis earlier in the year. I mean, obviously down in Australia I was on a good roll. Yeah, but it's been a while. I mean, obviously it wasn't in the clay and it wasn't in the grass. That's too long. You feel like you start losing a lot of ground.

Q. Speaking of Australia a little bit, how do you look at that match? I mean, it was so close. You can't be down about the Safin match, right?

ANDRE AGASSI: Right. How do I look at it? What do you mean?

Q. I mean you didn't look at it as a downward turn?

ANDRE AGASSI: No, at the time, you sort of give yourself a look at the basket and you hope things fall for you. You know, that night, that night was a disappointing night certainly, but one that I did everything that I could control out there. I was doing my best, hitting my shots. But, you know, he played pretty darn well. You know, but then it's disappointing. It's the first Slam of the year, it's one that I'm used to winning, and maybe I had a bit of a rebound effect from it. But it wasn't more than what you would expect from just losing a disappointing, important match.

Q. What are your first thoughts on Moya and your memories from earlier matches? You're 2-1.

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah. Well, he's a strong player with a lot of weapons. I mean his forehand, his serve, his movement. He's really experienced out there. He knows what he's doing. I'm going to have to be hitting my shots, not hesitating, trying to dictate what goes on out there.

Q. You're obviously organizing your schedule carefully. Some events you're entering that you decide don't work for you so you're pulling out. Is that a little bit disconcerting because you're not always sure where or when you're going whereas in the past you had a schedule you kept to more?

ANDRE AGASSI: Well, the reason why one would keep to their schedule is because they have a body and a mind that allows them just to keep going. Certainly that's something that I envy. The decisions I make, I'm privileged to have the luxury of making those decisions. I mean, if I have to suffer a fine or something for pulling out of a tournament, it's not my reason for just pushing myself through it. So I get to do things on my terms, which is crucial more now for me than ever - more for me now than ever. You want to feel fresh, you want to feel healthy every week. But I just don't think that's realistic for me these days, so I want to prepare myself for the biggest ones and do my best to be at my best. I try to look at it as a strategy more than something that's disconcerting.

Q. You said the other day that this wasn't the happiest -- playing tennis, you've been grinding your gears this year a little bit. But with the family, the maturity, is it one of the happier times in your life?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, I mean, I have a great life. I have a great life. So it's a time that I enjoy very much. But so much of your life is affected by what you are doing on the court or what you have to prepare for. So it's not always as easy to leave work behind, but children help you do that. And I wouldn't give up this year for anything; it's been a great year.

Q. How many people come to you and think that that kid on the commercial is Jaden?

ANDRE AGASSI: Everybody - literally.

Q. Was he a short 6-year-old?

ANDRE AGASSI: I don't know. I don't know how short he was. But, yeah, I've never -- I sort of couldn't compare him, but he was a 6-and-a-half-year-old. His name is Connor.

Q. That's a great commercial.

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, it is.

Q. Is he as good as he comes off in the commercial?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, he hits the ball pretty well. He plays every day. He's the real deal (smiling).

End of FastScripts….

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