March 11, 1996
INDIAN WELLS, CALIFORNIA
Q. Steffi, after your first match you said it was too short
to gauge how you were playing. This one was a bit longer. How
would you gauge your play?
STEFFI GRAF: I am trying to be diplomatic now. And I wish I
would have played a little bit better, but I guess it was good
for me to come back after being down 4-1 in the second set and
come back and play a couple of games a little more solid and to
be getting back into the second set and playing two games at 5-4.
Q. You were angry at one stage. You slapped the balls into
the stand. Were you angry at lines calls or yourself?
STEFFI GRAF: Myself.
Q. Did you feel you were tested today?
STEFFI GRAF: Absolutely. I mean, I thought sometimes I really
was playing some really deep and low backhands and she was really
playing them extremely well. She didn't get intimidated by a
lot of shots. She played some good shots off it. I really do
think she was playing, testing me quite well.
Q. What did you think when she missed that easy overhand
and then you were able to break, "thank God", or what?
STEFFI GRAF: No, I mean, actually it wasn't as easy as you thought
because I could have miss-hit it and it came kind of awkward,
so it really wasn't that easy as you might think.
Q. Steffi, do you think a match like this makes you a little
bit more tournament-tough or --
STEFFI GRAF: Absolutely. Absolutely, because I did get into
some situations where I had to play well or I had to play solid
and I did. At some point maybe I didn't as well as I could, but
these kind of matches you need to get to that point when you play
the top seeds, to get tested at those moments, you have to get
Q. Julie made the point that you don't have to get to that
point; that your history suggests that you don't have to be match-tough
STEFFI GRAF: Well, I do feel that I need to and I think it is
inside. I mean, at some points today I felt like I was not really
stepping in and I think that will probably come with the more
matches I am going to play. I think I was stepping up; be a bit
more confident and go out and be a little bit more looser and
more relaxed and I think that is what I was missing a bit today.
Q. When you are behind 4 to 1, did you ever get tempted to
let it go?
STEFFI GRAF: No. Not really my attitude, even though I wasn't
really happy about the game that, you know, where she broke me
from 2-1 to 3 1, and got a couple of chances to break back to
3-2 and I didn't use them, but no, it is -- you know, try to --
I know that I still got chances to break her. I just have to
be a bit more concentrated and play the points a little bit better.
Q. When you are in that situation, down 4-2, second match
of the year, is it the physical part that takes over or does the
mind take over and carry you through it?
STEFFI GRAF: It is the mind. I mean, you really got to focus
a little bit better and try to think about more about what you
want to do and she plays pretty predictable, so you just have
to put your mind on the court and I think I did that a little
bit better then; returned a little bit better and just use the
Q. How much did that backhand service return down the line
that you hit have to do with you winning today, Steffi?
STEFFI GRAF: My backhand down the line -- which one was that?
Q. The break --
STEFFI GRAF: Oh, yeah, when she was trying to come into the
Well, it helped me a lot. Also I think it was very important
shot when I got the game to 6-5 and when I played the backhand
down the line and she came in the passing shot, I think those
were two key points.
Q. When you have time off, which parts of your game get the
more rusty than others?
STEFFI GRAF: Get a little bit defensive. I think that is what
happened a little bit. You don't go as much for the lines as
you maybe would do and so it -- getting a little bit more defensive
and also lacking a bit of confidence to step in.
Q. Did you note that the Knicks beat the Bulls last night?
STEFFI GRAF: I watched it, yeah. Didn't expect that one, though.
Q. Last time you were here you bought a dog.
STEFFI GRAF: The store is not there anymore. It is luckier
Q. You already went and looked?
STEFFI GRAF: Yeah, the second day I was here.
Q. You already went and looked?
STEFFI GRAF: Yeah.
Q. Are you looking for a new dog?
STEFFI GRAF: No, please, I do have to say after being home for
three months and being with my two German Shepards, it is extremely
difficult and I miss them so much and that is why I know I would
be tempted for another one because I do miss my animals a lot.
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