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September 3, 1994

Mary Pierce


Q. Mary, Wiesner said that you played unbelievably well in Montreal, but she had noticed a difference in all three rounds in your confidence and said it has been reflected in a little bit more shaky play. Do you feel that is true and do you have an explanation?

MARY PIERCE: No, I think I played well my first match -- except my second match it was very windy, so conditions were very difficult. I wasn't feeling well. Today I didn't think I played that well. So I think today was the first day I was little bit unhappy with the way I played. I have to gives Judith credit because she played a tough match. She played -- let ball very deep, that was also very difficult for me to attack.

Q. With all those many breakpoints there that you faced, did you know that when you had to, when you absolutely had to, you were able to come up with the big shot?

MARY PIERCE: Yeah, I think that made the difference in the match. That is the difference from the top players to the other players-- is when it comes time where you have to win the point, you have to make the shot, the better player comes up with it.

Q. Your father has been giving out interviews in the press criticizing your second round match. Did it affect you at all? Did it not in some way? Do you pay attention to it knowing that he coached you as a child and that it still has an effect on you?

MARY PIERCE: No, honestly, because I don't really read the press too much. So didn't know about that.

Q. You did not read it?


Q. Has your game changed; he says that some of your strokes have been changed by Nick Bollettieri; do you feel that that is true?

MARY PIERCE: None of my strokes have changed at all. I have just worked on my serve. My serve has changed a little bit. I think it has worked better than before.

Q. You did move?

MARY PIERCE: True, not as good as I can.

Q. How would you compare this U.S. Open experience so far with those past, the respect or the feelings from other players toward you as the fourth seed and the whole experience in general?

MARY PIERCE: I think the difference with the players-- really, I don't think there is really a big difference. I get along well with all the other players. I think they respect me more and I respect all of them just as much. And I think the only difference has been just when I play with the crowds, the crowds have really been great, really been supporting me.

Q. Do you feel the confidence that you felt apparently during the French; do you feel that here or are you still getting your stride?

MARY PIERCE: I mean, I feel it, but it is a little bit different. I mean, I just felt so great playing and moving around on the clay court and I think that is just the difference. I don't feel like I am moving as well on these hard courts because you have to take a couple of extra steps. You can't really slide into the ball as you can on clay courts. I think I just have to get used to it.

Q. Mary, I understand is that you said if you were to do it over again you would have gone back and finished high school; could you comment on the age eligibility rule that is under consideration now?

MARY PIERCE: Yeah, well, I have answered that question many times. For me it is a simple thing to answer. I feel that, you know, there shouldn't really be an age where the girls are allowed to turn pro or not. I think that if she is 12, 11, 15, 16, however hold she is, if she is the best junior or the best player in the world at that age, I feel that it is a shame to just to waste that talent and not to play and compete against the top pros. So I really don't feel that there is any age, but I do think that the kids should stay in school because you are only young once. You should be able to enjoy those things when you are young not to try to grow up to soon, but only be allowed to play only certain number of tournaments. If you are 13 or 14, only maybe three or four and if you are older, more tournaments.

Q. You do regret not having gone further in school?

MARY PIERCE: I don't regret anything. I just might have thought it would have been, you know, fun, or a little bit better because you grow up so fast on the Tour, you have to mature so much sooner.

Q. I would just like to ask one more question. There has been a lot of talk not only on your part, but about many players having fun on the court. When you are a 4th seed or an 8th seed and you get out there and you get down a break, is it still fun?

MARY PIERCE: Yeah, I mean, well, you can't really say, yeah, you just have to keep it fun. You can't take it too seriously. You have to know that you are giving it your best and that you are trying and just to enjoy it.

Q. Is that the biggest thing you think you have learned since your experience at the French, to relax a little about your results?

MARY PIERCE: Yeah, I feel that you know, playing at the French Open was a really unbelievable experience for me in my tennis career. I think I will never forget it. That really helped me to learn that I play my best tennis when I am relaxed when I am just trying to doing my best and enjoying it.

End of FastScripts...

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