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September 7, 2019

Bethanie Mattek-Sands

Jamie Murray

New York, NY, USA

Mattek-Sands Murray/Chan Venus

6-2, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Bethanie, a year ago you came in here having had the surgery. You didn't know if you'd walk again, let alone play tennis. Now you're doing the same thing good. Talk about the satisfaction factor from last year to this year?
BETHANIE MATTEK-SANDS: First I'm going to say, I'm going to stop with that pattern. No more surgeries, I can do it without it.

No, it's been a journey. This year I played Australian Open, I felt my knee again. Obviously once I got it scanned, realized I needed another surgery. For a moment, it's tough. You know there's rehab, you know there's time off, momentum kind of stops.

But I've been through it before. I've been through worse. I was going to keep my head up. I knew I was going to be back out on the court. When, I didn't know. I was aiming for French Open, obviously because my partner, Lucie, was retiring. I was doing my best to come back and play a match or two with her. Didn't work out. I was able to come back on grass and start up feeling really good.

It's a journey. That's why I enjoy these moments so much: you don't know what's going to happen next week, next year. I fell in love with tennis again, so I appreciate the competition, I appreciate the stadium matches.

For me, I've been here three weeks, since before quallies. I had such a great team here. It's those moments that it's about. Obviously the trophy ceremonies, they're amazing, will always be remembered.

These past couple weeks it's getting ready for the matches, what we do post match. We have team coffee every morning. Warmup today on Arthur Ashe Stadium, you just have a cool feeling.

Those are things I'll remember just as much as holding the trophy.

Q. Jamie, been pretty decent fortnight for you overall, I guess. Quite lucrative, as well.
JAMIE MURRAY: Yeah, I mean, had a great run in the men's doubles. Obviously today winning the trophy again was really exciting. A great moment for us. Played a lot of good tennis over the fortnight. Really felt like I got things going with Neal, as well. Yeah, played a lot of good tennis.

Unfortunate to not quite sneak through in the semis... But really happy to come back a couple days later and win mixed with Beth again.

Q. Jamie, what was it that made you say, We're here together as a team. No matter what your injuries are, we're going to go on from this?
JAMIE MURRAY: I mean, I was pretty chilled about it. If she was able to come back and play, then awesome. I'd obviously love to keep playing with Beth. Like today, that's why, so...

I mean, look, she's a great player, great mixed player, great partner for me. I think really kind of complements what I can do well on the doubles court, especially in mixed.

She was trying really hard to get back for French Open, didn't work out. Obviously came back, played on grass.

For me, I always enjoy playing mixed. I enjoy playing with Beth because we have a lot of fun on the court together. As long as she's fit and healthy, for me, I'll always keep wanting to play with her.

Is that all right?


Q. Jamie, any reason you do so well here?
JAMIE MURRAY: I mean, I've had good partners obviously, the last few years. I mean, for me personally, I like the conditions here. I like that it's pretty fast, quite lively conditions. I like the balls. Helps me quite a bit with my serve. I can move the ball around a lot, use my spins.

For my return, because the ball is bouncing a bit higher, blocks and lobs, compared to Wimbledon, for example, where the ball is down here. It doesn't really help me that much because I don't play really topspin. When the ball is up here, I can move it around here, it's easier for me to hit down on the ball. I guess that's the reason for me why I personally like coming here to play.

BETHANIE MATTEK-SANDS: And it's the biggest stadium.


Q. After the trophy ceremony, they showed the match point again. Bethanie, you looked a little bit confused about match point.
BETHANIE MATTEK-SANDS: So I didn't know it was match point. Actually I was really far off. I actually thought it was 3-2 in the games. I was so set that nobody had held serve those first four games. All right, who is getting this break, the first hold?

I was doing math. I was, Okay, if we break here, I might have to serve it out. I got way too far ahead of myself, which is a bummer. Last year I knew it was match point. I had all these amazing match point jump and celebration shots. I had nothing this year, so...

No, like I was just zoned into how I wanted to play, reading his serve. I think even the shadow comes into play a little bit where you're picking and choosing.

Jamie played awesome. Some of his returns today set me up at the net. Some of his lobs... I thought we played so well as a team together. We had a couple great points where I was covering a volley in the alley, he covered the middle, we won the point. I think when you play doubles like that, it's just so much fun.

Even though I didn't know it was the end, that's good, I was having fun out there. I was going to keep going.

I'm an energy player. I had fun out there.

Q. Prize money, you get $160,000 as a team. In men's and women's doubles, the top prize money is 740. There's a big discrepancy. What do you both think of that? Should it be a little closer? Why is mixed doubles kind of the stepchild?
BETHANIE MATTEK-SANDS: I think it's a good question. I actually think it should be closer. To me, mixed doubles is an undervalued tennis product. You have guys and girls playing on the same level, no handicaps. The guys aren't feeling bad for the girls. The girls pick on the guys. It's generally amazing tennis out there. We have great points. Guys and girls together, not too many sports say they do that.

I think it's almost underutilized in marketing. I think there's a lot of club players, especially in the U.S., that can relate to playing doubles and mixed doubles.

I'm all for obviously upping the prize money, but I think even the awareness. I think it's exciting tennis. I think if more people knew about it, followed the teams, they would really enjoy watching mixed doubles and doubles.

JAMIE MURRAY: Yeah, I mean, same thing. It was a perfect answer. Yeah, I think doubles is kind of the bedrock of the amateur game. I think it's a huge part of our sport. I think it definitely has the potential to offer greater value to these tournaments than perhaps it currently is or currently allowed to, I think.

Q. What are you going to do to liven this guy up?
BETHANIE MATTEK-SANDS: He's actually pretty lively. When I hear him in interviews, Oh, this is not the same guy that's in our conversations. He's got energy.

I'm making him drink some champagne out of the trophy, we're having some pizza. But he's leaving. It's not like we're partying till 4 a.m. tonight.

Next time.

JAMIE MURRAY: Yeah, next year.

Q. Jamie, next year one of the goals might be the Olympics. Two chances of a medal in that. I think Andy said recently he was maybe going to make the doubles at the Olympics more of a priority, schedule around it.
JAMIE MURRAY: So what's the question (smiling)?

Q. Is it one of your biggest goals next year, the Olympics?
JAMIE MURRAY: I mean, truthfully I haven't thought about it that much. I think obviously in previous years, like, when I've played with Andy, it's been a one-off tournament. He's also been preparing the best he can for the singles. For him, doubles wasn't necessarily the priority.

I haven't really spoken to him about playing or anything like that. But maybe that's something we have to do. Obviously I got my partnership going with Neal, as well. Have to obviously look at that.

I mean, if he's definitely wanting to sort of focus in on doubles for the Olympics, then that's obviously a good thing.

Q. Will you maybe talk to Jo about mixed?
JAMIE MURRAY: I guess so. I mean, we played in the last one. We had the toughest draw in the tournament, because we lost to Beth and Jack Sock in the first round, who went on and won it. That was like the third or fourth time I'd lost to Beth. I was like, Shit, if I get the chance to play with her, I got to make sure I do, because she's always beating up on me (laughter).

The thing is, like, Jo plays really good doubles, as well. Yeah, something that needs to be discussed obviously. Need to obviously keep playing, keep winning, make sure to qualify for the team. There's a lot of competition now in the British squad for doubles spots.

Q. Bethanie, earlier in the season you were kind enough to share the victory of your win over Venus Williams: when you smelled those grilled cheese sandwiches. What is the secret to your run here?
BETHANIE MATTEK-SANDS: Secret to the run here? You know what, other than having an awesome partner these whole couple weeks in New York. I love New York City. We're staying in an amazing spot with friends. I have this whole squad.

We have this routine where we have coffee in the morning, we chat before the day starts. We're ending the evening with a serial killer show on Netflix. But it's been an awesome routine. It's really kept it normal. Whatever happened at the courts, like, we've just had this squad for the last three weeks. It's been really awesome. I'm actually kind of sad it's over.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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