November 17, 2005
THE MODERATOR: Questions in English or Chinese.
Q. Apologies if you've been asked this before, but where were you and what were you doing when you got the call to say you were playing in the Masters Cup, if it's printable?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, I was at home, Cordoba. It was Monday afternoon. I was already packing all my stuff, going fishing in south Argentina. I was supposed going Tuesday morning.
Q. Congratulation to be in the semis. Davydenko yesterday said he would rather play against you in the semis. Why do you think he picked you rather than Federer?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, of course, playing Roger is very difficult, so it's normal that he pick up me. We'll see on Saturday.
Q. He would rather play you than Ljubicic. Why do you think he picked you? Sorry.
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Okay, that's different. I don't know, you have to ask him. I think we both play a very good tennis. Me or him is going to be very difficult on Saturday. I don't know why. You have to ask him better than me.
Q. When we see you play like that, it's easy to ask the question, "Why is this guy not in the top three?" What stops you producing that kind of level on a regular basis?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, if I could play all the time like this, of course I can be higher in my ranking, but it's not easy playing always that good. I need a lot of motivation to play that kind of matches. I think today I feel that I play one of my best matches on indoors. I wish to play much more times like I play today, but it's not really easy.
Q. What stops you?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Motivation sometimes (smiling).
Q. Even Ljubicic said that this surface may be the best for your game, the best of all. Do you think so or not? If yes, why?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: I prefer play clay courts against him.
Q. For your game.
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, I can play very good indoors. I feel that I can play very good everywhere, not just on this surface. If you have to pick up one surface against him, I not going to play indoors. It's much better playing for him than for me. But I can play very good, you can see today.
Q. Is fishing a relaxation for you? Is it something that you do to relax? Do you take yourself to a lake on your own, sit there all day?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Yeah, I like fish, fly-casting. You don't have to wait. You have to find fishes. That's more interesting. It's not just keep sitting and waiting. But I feel like that kind of things make me feel in completely different way than I'm doing around the world every single days. I really enjoy it. I go with a lot of friends, so we have fun. If is so windy, you can't fish, for example, you can do another thing, just nothing. That is part of the plan, be there. Sometimes it's so windy, you can do nothing. "Okay, we don't do nothing." It's not just fishing; it's all the program we make.
Q. Your biggest catch? What is the best thing you've ever caught?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, depends where. I prefer fishing salmon or trout in the river than going to the sea. Is completely different. But in the river, you can't compare size from rivers to sea. I don't mind how big is the catch. But the biggest one that I catch was a shark.
Q. Do you eat the fish you catch?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Yeah, of course.
Q. The shark, too?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Not sharks, but most of them (smiling).
Q. You played 2003 Houston Masters Cup. Can you compare the hospitality and the fans between Houston and Shanghai?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Much, much better here. Hundred percent sure. Much, much.
Q. In some countries, in Britain, there's a lot of fuss made about who is the top player in the rankings at the end of the year. For us, is it Henman, Rusedski. Does that happen in Argentina because there's more of you and you're all quite close? Is there a rivalry between you all about who finishes higher?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Between players?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: No, not really. Is not my case. I'm not every Monday taking the weekly and see how is the ranking goes. I really don't mind. I just try to do my best job, my best practice, my best matches. I don't really care about much the other guys. Of course, if they have a very good year, it's better for everybody. It's not for them, it's not for me, it's for the country as well. I think I don't really care too much about who is leading or who finish first or second.
Q. Do you think you're different from your countrymen? Coria, he prefer clay. You play well in every surface.
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Nobody is same person as the other one. I can pick indoors or grass or hard courts, and he can play clay or whatever he wants. I think no one has the same game. Of course, everyone are different: me, Coria, Gaudio, Puerta. All of us are much difference between one each other. I don't think we can pick the same surface all the time.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.