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August 27, 1996

Mark Philippoussis


Q. Mark, how much satisfaction do you get from that, apart from the win, just what happened after the Australian Open?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: I'm very pleased to have a win tonight. The match in Australia was totally different, the situation was really different. I came off with a win with Pete, I was so excited. Today was totally different. I was prepared, went out there with a game plan, played it.

Q. How much did you learn over the last couple of weeks, Mark, some of the defeats you've had more than the victories, perhaps?


Q. How much have you learned over the last couple of weeks, maybe Alex O'Brien I'm thinking of and Todd Woodbridge, those matches? Did you learn a lot from those matches?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: I mean, you learn a lot on losses. The match against O'Brien; O'Brien was hot at the tournament. I didn't play some bad tennis. Had some chances in the first set. He had a great tournament. A bit of luck went his way. He won the tournament. What can I say? It was a disappointing loss. I played my game. Against Todd, I had a break up in the first, 40-Love, new balls. I lost that. Just lost a bit mentally. There was the match there. But, I mean, I had some things to learn in those matches. This is an entirely different match, a new start, a new week, the US Open. I want to forget about everything and give this 100 percent, it's a Grand Slam.

Q. What sort of things has McNamee tried to get you to do?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: Pretty - not pretty much anything. We just go out there, muck around the court, gets me relaxed. He's a fun guy. We have a lot of fun on the court. What we do is in the morning we'd sit down - or the day before - we talk about a game plan, talk about that. He tells me, if you have the game plan, go out on the court and play it, don't think about the match. I just have the game plan to work on.

Q. What were you trying to do tonight in terms of your game plan?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: Tonight I just wanted to put a lot of pressure when I was serving. I wanted to serve, volley. I knew what he was going to do. I knew he was going to work me around with his slice forehand, hit it deep, try to keep me moving. I knew that was going to happen. The thing I did today was play his forehand a lot more, really just played his forehand a lot. Then when I had a short ball, I hit it to his backhand, come in. Some points I took my chances and went for some shots. That paid off. I think I served very well today, got a lot of free points. I think I returned his serve very well.

Q. You said you learn a lot in your losses. What did Mark Philippoussis lose tonight in a win?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: Just having a game plan out there, you know, just have a game plan against anyone, go out there, play my game. And I should feel confident, doesn't matter who I play. If I play good tennis, if I serve well, I feel confident. If you can keep on holding your serve and get to 5-All or 6-All, anything can happen. A couple lucky points here and there. That's the way it is.

Q. That backhand pass you hit before breakpoint, was that the best shot you hit all night?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: That was very important. He put a serve out wide. I just tried to hit the return hard. I had no play, I had to go for it. I just went for it and got it. That one behind my back.

Q. That wasn't bad.


Q. Mark, how primed are you for this tournament? Obviously you said it's the Grand Slam tournament, US Open. How much different is this tournament to any other?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: I mean, Grand Slams are more superior to any other tournaments. You've got the Australian Open, Wimbledon, the tournament, probably the most prestige of all the Grand Slams. The atmosphere at the Open is unbelievable. So many people, a big busy crowd. People really enjoy the tennis more, especially people from New York that come all over to watch here. This is very important for me to do well. Like I said, I've been playing some good tennis the last couple of weeks. I've got my form just in time for the US Open. If I just concentrate on my matches, I think I can do well.

Q. Do you have the realization that you could win the tournament?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: No, I'm not looking ever there. I'm looking at it match by match. Played a first round, played it well, have a game plan going to my second match. If I win that, you know, match by match, you never know. In men's tennis, the depth is so great that anyone can beat anyone. It's not like the women where the top women dominate everything. You can see in tournaments, a lot of players can beat anyone. You never know what can happen in a Grand Slam.

Q. Do you think you can win it?

MARK PHILIPPOUSSIS: It's hard to say. Inside of me I know I have the potential to win. It's depending on me growing up maturely. I've played some good tennis in two weeks, whole two weeks in a row you have to play some good tennis to win it. If I just concentrate, just be mature, anything can happen.

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