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January 25, 2001

Byron Black

David Prinosil


MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Maybe you could talk from your point of view how you came together with David and how obviously successful the partnership has worked out so far?

BYRON BLACK: No, we're very fortunate. I think we talked in Paris last year. It was just by accident. You know, I think we were both struggling a little bit at that time. My ranking was like 50 and David's was like 40. We were just looking for anyone, I think, you know. You know, we both realize we can play good tennis. I was just happy he signed us in because I hadn't seen him for about three months. No, we've teamed up very well. You know, we've both been returning exceptionally well, mixing up our serves. I think we complement each other perfectly.

Q. Is there any commitment on how long you are going to play together? Anything fixed?

DAVID PRINOSIL: Actually, he dumped me already (laughter).

BYRON BLACK: He asked me that yesterday when we got to the semifinals. We didn't expect this to happen so maybe we'll have to rethink it. We do play well together, but about a month ago Jared Palmer, who used to play with O'Brien, who is also a very good doubles player, he's a little injured right now, he called me up to play some doubles with him. I knew David was going to Europe and I was going to the States, so I planned to play some with Jared. I think if we want to play together, I can call Jared. I don't think he would mind. We'll see how it goes.

Q. What did you think are the strong points of the combination with David?

BYRON BLACK: We return very well together. Like I said, on our serves, we've been helping each other out. We've been poaching and faking quite well. That's been throwing off our opponents I think a fair bit. But mainly I think our returns are dangerous. Our opponents are feeling the pressure every time they serve. I think that's been helping us a lot.

Q. What are your thoughts on the final?

BYRON BLACK: We're just going to have to wait and see who we play. Obviously I know both of the teams very well, especially Bjorkman, who I played with last year. I've played Todd many times. That will be an interesting match. I think they'll be tough to beat. But then again, Arthurs and Zimonjic are dangerous. They have huge serves, these guys. I'd prefer maybe to play them. We'll wait and see who wins.

Q. We expect you to play with your brother. Can you tell us why that's not happening?

BYRON BLACK: I think Wayne and I play too similar to help each other. We return very well, but we struggle on our serves. I prefer to play with a bigger player, a guy with a bigger serve who can help me on my serve. I'm quite consistent on the returns. So I think it's important in doubles to have quite a big player, flashy player, who can make some big shots, and a consistent player. That's probably the main point why I don't play with Wayne. I play with him in Davis Cup. I have played with him a lot in Davis Cup. But also probably just to keep the peace in the family. It's better to keep it separate sometimes.

End of FastScripts....

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