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September 10, 1993

Steffi Graf


Q. Steffi, how angry were you with yourself in the beginning?

STEFFI GRAF: I mean, I don't know if it was anger, but I was just kind of frustrated. It was really difficult for me to adjust in the first couple of games with the wind, I mean, I was out there to practice in the morning and there definitely wasn't any kind of wind. Couldn't get going-- moving slow, and specially in the wind, that's one of the important things you have to do is try to keep moving, stepping in, and I didn't do any of it. But-- and she won the really important game 4-3, which kind of helped me to get back, because at least a few good points, made a lot of easy mistakes, so I wasn't happy.

Q. Steffi, can you understand somebody who is 26 years old, reached the semifinals of the U.S. Open and is planning to retire; can you understand the thinking that they've had enough?

STEFFI GRAF: Not yet, but maybe I will in a couple of years. Today she had a good chance, because I wasn't playing very well. She had a good chance to even win today. She was trying to play very well.

Q. Steffi, what do you think turned it around for you?

STEFFI GRAF: Kept the ball in play and important was first break in the second set and she made a few unforced errors and I kind of told myself, okay -- let's try to keep the ball in play and at least make her work for the win or for every point.

Q. Were you surprised to find yourself a set down to someone you had beaten 17 times in a row?

STEFFI GRAF: I mean, I stood on the court not thinking about how many times I played somebody before and how it was, but I was surprised, I was really tight in the beginning and I was-- you know, I was not kind of ready for the match. That was it.

Q. You won five consecutive tournaments and you haven't lost a tour match since May fifth, even when you're a set down in an important match like this, do you sometimes feel, I'm playing too well, I can't lose, I'm going to win this match?

STEFFI GRAF: I did think that's the way I played the first set. I mean, that's not my usual game. That's not me and I had-- I have to sometimes remind myself who I am and I was thinking about that and I started playing better after that.

Q. About what?

STEFFI GRAF: About who I am and how I can play tennis. I just thought about that for a minute.

Q. Steffi, some of the men have been critical of the conditions, saying it hasn't allowed the best players to play up to form. Now, outside of today's first set and the set with Sabatini, how do you feel with the conditions --

STEFFI GRAF: What kind of conditions?

Q. The players' lounge, the scheduling?

STEFFI GRAF: I mean, this is for everybody to say, if top players and for the lessor-ranked people, everybody has to deal with it and it's just a matter of how you can focus on what you're doing. I mean, I haven't had any problems, you expect-- I've been here more than ten years and I know the place, so, I mean, it's nothing that's new to me.

Q. Steffi, did you watch the other semifinal earlier today and what do you expect from Helena tomorrow?

STEFFI GRAF: The same as she's been doing the other matches, trying to change the rhythm, come in a lot, her strength, her first serve is very good, I expect a match she's going to try to not give me any rhythm at all, mix it up, play high, short, come in, slow, fast.

Q. You've had some problems with Sabatini coming-- attacking the net and Sukova, of course, this is her game, you have to be extra sharp in passing shot?

STEFFI GRAF: Definitely, my passing shot has to be in good shape, but I don't think I've been really passing too bad lately. I mean, I improved that shot lately. It's going to be a difficult game, but I'm looking forward to it.

Q. The fact you have to go from a semifinal to a final tomorrow without a day's rest, does it bother you or are you used to that here now, that's the way it is?

STEFFI GRAF: Well, we play every tournament the same, I mean, I expect-- except Grand Slams, so I'm very used to it. I mean, maybe it is not appropriate for a Grand Slam tournament, but of course, we used to do it in every tournament. It is not a big deal.

End of FastScripts....

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