home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


August 30, 2000

Magnus Norman

U.S. OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP, Flushing Meadows, New York

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Magnus.

Q. Coming off a win in Long Island, I mean obviously that would be a confidence-builder. You come in, it's the first time you're seeded here. How different is it coming in like this than it has been in the past?

MAGNUS NORMAN: It's not very different. I'm trying to be the same person as before and I'm trying to prepare the same as before. Obviously I came from a win this year in Long Island, as you said, and I'm very confident. I'm very happy to get through the first round. It was a little bit slow start today but I think I pulled it through and I'm happy about it.

Q. Do you like this atmosphere?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Yeah, it was great. It was a little bit windy, though, down there on Center Court, and very noisy. But, you know, I'm getting used to it and I'm glad I'm through the first round.

Q. Nice to get a chance to open your campaign on the Center Court. In some of the earlier tournaments this year you didn't find yourself on the Center Court?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Yeah, it's very nice. I feel very honored to play on the Center Court today and, you know, I'll try to do the best out of it. And, you know, it's great to be appreciated more in the States than maybe somewhere else.

Q. Were you nervous coming out knowing you were playing an American who would get a lot of balls back?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Not nervous, but, you know I was -- he's just a good player. So I was aware. But I was not nervous. I know my capacity, when I'm playing good. I know that I'm probably a little bit better player than he is. So if I could just get my game going, I knew that I had a good chance to win. So it was more like, you know, trying to concentrate on the things that I had to do.

Q. Have you looked at your draw? I know every top player says we take it one match at a time, all the guys are good, it's deep. But it's got to be tempting to look up there on the board and see that Sampras and Agassi are on the other side and you have a good chance to get to the final.

MAGNUS NORMAN: Yeah, but there are good guys in the bottom half of the draw as well. Safin, everybody's dangerous. So if you take anything for granted, you know, you gonna be out of there. You saw Rafter yesterday, everybody was surprised. I read in the papers that he should be seeded, you know, and look what happens. You can't just seed the player up on his ability, on the surface. You have to have a ranking based on 52 weeks. It's so tough. Everybody can beat everybody. It's the same on the women's side. So, you know, it's so tough. Competition is so tough.

Q. But do you feel like if you play to your capability that you can reach the final?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Absolutely. Absolutely.

Q. Have you talked about your momentum at all? I just walked in a minute ago. Have you talked about the momentum you gained perhaps in Long Island and how you feel?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Yeah, well as I said, I'm approaching the tournament with good confidence. I'm happy that I got through the first round. It's always difficult. And no matter what happened the week before, the first round is always difficult. I thought I had a difficult opponent today, Paul gets a lot of balls back. He's playing in his home country on Center Court, so I knew he was going to give 100 percent. But I came off to a slow start. But after that, you know, I felt fine.

Q. When did your game fall into place in this past few weeks? You struggled earlier in the summer?

MAGNUS NORMAN: I think in Long Island absolutely, I was playing both singles and doubles there. I came there to get a lot of court time. It felt like against Krajicek in the semis everything kind of clicked and the Finals was a good one as well to win. So I'm feeling very good at the moment.

Q. I saw you play the last two years at Hamlet. It seems like the players weren't taking it that seriously in my opinion; that they were getting their exercise in. Did you sense it being different this year?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Not really. I mean the guys who is playing the semis and Finals there, of course they want to win the tournament. I think everybody who enters the tournament except for maybe someone -- no names mentioned -- takes the tournament seriously. But every tournament I go to, I try to do 100 percent, no matter if I'm in good shape, if I'm in bad shape, if I'm playing good tennis, bad tennis, if it's on grass, if it's on clay. I always give 100 percent. You have to be fair to the organizers. So I came to Long Island to defend my title. I don't care what my opponent does; I'm going to do 100 percent, the best I can.

Q. Do you like playing here?

MAGNUS NORMAN: I always liked it here. I love New York. It's a great city. I have a lot of friends here from Sweden who works here, and, you know, staying at a beautiful hotel, Roger Smith Hotel, they have a Swedish manager there, hotel manager. He takes good care of us. So it's kind of coming home when you get to that hotel. You get the same room every year, you get the Swedish food in the nights so it's great.

Q. Martina joked the other day that she had to check with you first but she decided to play doubles with Jan-Michael Gambill because she was afraid of getting into arguments. Are you that difficult?

MAGNUS NORMAN: No. (Laughing.) She gave me a call, but it's too much to play. I want to concentrate on singles. Maybe another time, you know. But she also said she wanted to win some matches. I said, "Hey, you better play with someone else." (Laughter.)

Q. Do you two talk a lot about tennis, you and Martina?

MAGNUS NORMAN: We try not to talk about tennis, but obviously, you know, yeah.

Q. So what are you talking about when you're not talking about tennis?

MAGNUS NORMAN: Well, that I want to keep private. But, you know, well sometimes we talk about tennis but not too much.

Q. You've seen her play a lot. You've seen -- you're obviously watching some women's tennis. Do you think she's too small now physically to keep up with Venus and Serena?

MAGNUS NORMAN: No. I don't think so. She's got other things that they don't have. But, you know, I think she's aware that she has to work very hard, and she has been working very hard the last couple of weeks. I understand. So, you know, I think she has a good chance here. Really.

Q. Does she go through the six-hour workouts that you put in?

MAGNUS NORMAN: We're not really here to talk about her strategy, are we? I think we should talk about my tennis instead. Sorry.

Q. Okay.

End of FastScripts…

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297