August 29, 2000
Flushing Meadows, New York
MODERATOR: Questions for Patrick.
Q. Where do you think you missed your chances tonight?
PATRICK RAFTER: I don't know. I didn't really give myself a lot of opportunities
throughout the match. You know, it was just a lot of unforced errors, you know, something
that when the points -- when the match gets tight, I generally am pretty solid and make
him come up with a good shot. If he does, then too good. Tonight just far too many errors.
Q. Could you have played him any differently than you did?
PATRICK RAFTER: It was hard to because I just wasn't hitting the ball well. I was
finding it very hard to pick the ball up there, on volleys, on returns especially as well,
groundstrokes. It was hard for me to play a game, you know, that I feel comfortable with.
My chip-charging wasn't working, my groundstrokes trying to get into play wasn't really
working. I just missed a lot of the fundamentals, a lot of high volleys. You know, my game
was off. I guess, you know, points like 15-30, I made a lot of unforced errors and things
like that, which are a little bit uncharacteristic I think at that stage.
Q. Can you put that down to anything in particular?
PATRICK RAFTER: Maybe probably lack of matches. You know, that would probably be one
thing that comes to mind. You know, Galo also played very well. You know, we both fought
very hard out there. I'm happy with the way I fought, and I tried to win. You know, some
days it just doesn't go your way. Tonight was one of those ones.
Q. Do you think he played well above his level?
PATRICK RAFTER: He's a talented player. You know, he has struggled probably in the
past. I don't really know what his level is because I've only seen him play twice. But he
put in a good performance there. Just too good on the night.
Q. Is there a bonus with regards to the your shoulder could stand up to a match like
that, given the engagements you've got coming up, Olympics and Davis Cup?
PATRICK RAFTER: It's been a funny sort of last couple of months. Coming into this, it's
been sort of a little distracting in a way, I suppose, with the Olympics coming up, also
the US Open and Davis Cup. These three things are all on my mind. It's hard for me to
focus just on one thing at the moment. These are three huge events, especially for me. But
the shoulder does feel good. You know, I need matches, and they haven't come. It's just a
lot of hard work I guess now to try and get the form back.
Q. Were you holding back a little bit on your serve earlier in the match? You seemed to
pick it up later on.
PATRICK RAFTER: Yeah, I was just trying to find my rhythm, trying to find what worked
out there. I lost my serve, a bit unfortunate to lose, only losing it once. Yeah, you
know, he stands back a long way. I was just trying to find what works best. Eventually I
found my rhythm, started serving well.
Q. It wasn't anything to do with the shoulder, being tentative about it?
PATRICK RAFTER: No, not at all.
Q. Where do you think this is going to settle in your list of career disappointments?
You were keen to do well here, after coming back with Wimbledon and all that.
PATRICK RAFTER: It is disappointing. But, I mean, I'm trying to be very positive about
it. You know, it's just another loss. These things happen. You know, it's not the end of
the world. I try to always make myself think like that. You know, it's going to be hard to
sleep tonight. It is disappointing. But, you know, you go out there, put in your best
effort. If it doesn't go off your way, you don't hit the ball quite as well as you'd like
to, these things happen. This is just part of the game.
Q. What is the program now?
PATRICK RAFTER: I've got no idea. I was trying to think of that in the shower. I really
don't know. I'd probably like to get out of New York pretty quickly. I would have enjoyed
hanging around here. But it's very hard staying in a place, you know. I won't come back to
this venue now. It's doesn't have a lot of good energy for me right now.
Q. Would you go back to Sydney straightaway?
PATRICK RAFTER: No. I'm going via Melbourne to call on and see the physio. I've got to
hit tennis balls. I don't really know. I don't know what to do.
Q. Might you go to Australia earlier than you would have?
PATRICK RAFTER: It's either Australia or stay here for a couple days or Bermuda, one of
the two. Depends what Rochey is doing, the training that I can get, which I need.
End of FastScriptsÃ¢â‚¬Â¦.