home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


January 2, 2020

Jeff Coetzee

Khololwam Montsi

Raven Klaasen

Ruan Roelofse

Kevin Anderson

Lloyd Harris

Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


THE MODERATOR: We'll start with an opening statement from the captain and then take questions.

JEFF COETZEE: To my left Kevin Anderson, No. 1, Lloyd Harris 2, Raven Klaasen, doubles. Ruan Roelofse and then Khololwam Montsi.

Q. Kevin, will you play Novak, I'm assuming, and how do you tackle him if you do.
KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, we'll be playing on Saturday against Novak, so it will be, obviously, an interesting matchup. First match in six months against somebody like that is, obviously, challenging, but, one, I'm really looking forward to the challenge. I've known about it, obviously, for a few weeks now. My body is feeling really good. I feel like I'm playing good tennis and this is a great way to get right back into the swing of things.

Q. And I guess a good result, possibly a win against Novak would set up your entire campaign, wouldn't it?
KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, definitely. Obviously, from a personal standpoint it would be great, but my number one goal is to try to get through our group stages here in Brisbane and get off to a good start again. So this would definitely put us in a very good position.

Q. Kevin, how sort of frustrating was the past year for you?
KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, on the tennis court it was very frustrating. Six months with the elbow, and then the two weeks after that felt good. The knee went out and as hard as I tried I couldn't get it right for the whole summer. So even though I only played five tournaments, it felt like I spent a lot of time competing and -- not necessarily competing just training, trying to get ready for competition. So that part was tough but obviously on the off-side it was, a big positive was welcoming our daughter to the world. So I spent a lot of time at home with my wife with her. So it was sort of tough on the one side but very, very rewarding on the other side.

Q. Jeff, we haven't had South Africa in world group of Davis Cup for awhile. And so just seeing everybody, pretty much an A team for South Africa is a pretty unique thing recently and I'm curious what you think of this group and what it means for South African tennis to have everybody up there together playing for the same team.
JEFF COETZEE: Yeah, it's great. I think it's just awesome that we all could be together and to be able to play at this event. And ATP Cup is so special. And then, wherever you represent your country, I think it's great. And to have Kevin here is, I think it's awesome. The rest of the team, we have all worked hard, Kevin has worked really hard to be back and we're just looking forward to it. I think we sort of are the underdog so we're going to go in there and just make the most of it. But it's just nice for Kevin to be back and to be healthy and then just to compete.

Q. Kevin, you haven't played for a South African team for awhile, so what is it like? How does it feel coming back into the fold of a team?
KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, it's really exciting for a couple of reasons, obviously, just being back, but being back in this format. I've really looked forward to this event for awhile now, with being on the council, just being in the talks for a couple years now, so it's one I've really looked forward to. We spend the whole year sort of competing for ourselves and, yeah, having the group, having that support on the court, off the court, it's quite different and one that I'm really looking forward to.

Q. Kevin, curious, obviously, you are the reason South Africa is here with your ranking, of course. Do you feel any extra pressure, anything like that, or what's kind of your feeling coming into this event?
KEVIN ANDERSON: No, not at all. I'm very pleased that we're able to get in here, and my ranking at the time was just, I guess, in the right spot for us to have qualified before I sort of started losing points when I wasn't able to compete. So it was really exciting, after the U.S. Open, to see that we had just got in then. And definitely no extra pressure as well. We're all going to give our best here, compete. I think we all believe that we have a really good shot. It starts with our first match on Saturday. It's not going to be easy up against, obviously, one of the best countries in the world, but I think we all believe in ourselves and we'll try to support each other through each and every single moment.

Q. Lloyd, the ranking points system here is pretty complicated for ATP Cup. I'm curious, have you looked at, like, how many points there are on offer for you this week and what you have to do? Because it's very different than your average week where you make a certain round you get a certain number of points. It's a lot of math involved in this one.
LLOYD HARRIS: Yeah, I've had a look. Obviously, there's a lot of points up for offer, especially with a guy maybe my ranking. If I win a couple of matches it could really shoot you up, especially in our group. I think I'm playing two guys that is maybe, like, top-30 or whatever, so that's, like, added points. So, yeah, I'm looking forward to that and it's a big opportunity for me, and I feel like I've been playing extremely well, especially ending off the year really well last year. So I'm feeling pretty confident, had a great off-season. So I'm looking forward to just us as a team competing and giving the best we have.

Q. What have you learned from this week, maybe from Kevin or Lloyd or the other -- or Raven -- the other guys? What's been a couple things you learned from them?
KHOLOLWAM MONTSI: Well, I mean, this week, for me, is mainly about learning. I just want to learn from each and every one of the guys on the team. It's the first time actually meeting Kevin, which is very cool for me. And I've, and being able to train with Lloyd a couple of times, I've learned a lot from him and how he works and how professional he is. And Jeff has also given me some advice. So I'm just trying to learn as each day goes on and we'll see how that goes.

Q. Jeff, have you all discussed how on-court coaching will work and how, kind of, your thoughts on that overall, what that will be like, what that will add to this event?
JEFF COETZEE: Yeah, it will add a lot of value, I think. Obviously, the personal coaches are allowed on the court, which is good. So, yeah, we can combine some strategy and stuff. But I think Kevin, obviously, has been working with his coach the last few weeks. And, yeah, we just got to play it by ear. You know, how do you deal with Novak? So that's, when we get there, we just got to keep swinging and hopefully everything goes in.

Q. It's a little different than other team competitions because of the rankings points. I'm just curious from your perspective if that ever factors into your decisions. If you're already set on having Kevin and Lloyd play every match for that or if it's flexible or how it's going to work?
JEFF COETZEE: No, definitely Kevin will be No. 1 and Lloyd for 2. So we'll keep it that, if there's any changes, but as of now it will stay as it is.

Q. Kevin, Shapovalov from Canada was saying yesterday that the ATP Cup and the Davis Cup being so close together it's a little weird and he would like to see just one big sort of event. What do you think?
KEVIN ANDERSON: It's always been a topic of conversation for a number of years now. And as I was saying earlier, just being on the council, it's been something that we have spoken about for a very long period of time. And I think, from our side, just really excited that this is taking off, the ATP Cup. It's a tournament that's owned by the tour itself. It's a great way to start the year. We start the year off with ATP Cup, finishing it with the World Tour finals, I think it makes a big statement to the rest of the world. I think it will be a exciting new format, you'll see really engaging with spectators around the world. It's a great way to start the Australian summer. So we can't control what happens with the Davis Cup. Obviously, that's a separate entity, which we aren't involved in those day-to-day decision making. We have an obviously much bigger say in our tournament here. So potentially in the future we'll, I guess, we'll have to wait and see what happens with that, if there is a possibility, but right now I think we just, I think a lot of players are just really excited about this event and it's one that's very player-friendly, but more focused specifically on just the players playing, getting out on the court. So I think really hoping this tournament will grow from strength to strength.

Q. Curious of your guys' thoughts as well about the team zones, how they're a little closer to the baseline, a lot different maybe from Laver Cup and other events you play. What do you think it will be like to have a team so close?
KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah. They, I guess the biggest example of that is the Laver Cup, which I played a couple years ago and you have your whole team right behind you. I think it's just really a similar feeling to that. It's a different positioning. But when I first practiced there and saw it, I thought this is really exciting. We were out there today, and as Jeff was saying, having both Jeff and your own coach out there, your whole team right behind you, that definitely is a different feeling out there and different atmosphere, so I think we're all looking forward to seeing what that's like and really getting behind each other when we are out on the court, that we're playing that supporting role.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297