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DAVIS CUP - RUSSIA vs USA


April 3, 1998


Tom Gullikson


ATLANTA, GEORGIA

PAGE CROSLAND: Let's begin.

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Q. So is this official now what the schedule is?

TOM GULLIKSON: Yeah. Mr. Mills will give you all the details.

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Q. And the Russian, he said something about maybe not playing the doubles tomorrow?

TOM GULLIKSON: You need to clarify that with him. I wasn't quite sure. We were originally maybe going to try to play all three matches tomorrow. You know, possibly the doubles situation needs to be looked at.

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Q. What would you do if you were in his shoes, having a player who is playing singles and doubles?

TOM GULLIKSON: I'm not in his shoes.

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Q. If you were?

TOM GULLIKSON: They wouldn't be Nike.

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Q. Obviously impacts him more than you.

TOM GULLIKSON: Sure. Realistically, they might have both their singles players playing doubles. That's a long day for them, no question.

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Q. So that has not yet been resolved, Tom, what's going to happen with doubles?

TOM GULLIKSON: No. We know for sure that two singles will be played tomorrow. I don't know. We'll have to sort that out with Mr. Mills. We were feeling good in the warm-up, I will say that.

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Q. You looked good.

TOM GULLIKSON: (Laughter).

PAGE CROSLAND: Any other questions for Tom?

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Q. How frustrating is this, when you kind of build up to play today? You had an idea with the weather.

TOM GULLIKSON: Especially yesterday, there wasn't a cloud in the sky, absolutely beautiful day. We had a very good day in practice. After a really good day in practice, you really like to get started. There's only so much practice you can do, then it's time to tee it up and play. So our guys were really eager to play today. Obviously, getting up this morning, seeing the rain, we went down early to Georgia Tech, they all hit indoors. Some of us are going back, you know, after this interview to hit a few more balls. At least we're hitting a few balls. It's frustrating to just kind of wait around. It's the same for both teams. I guess it's a little harder on the away team. At least we're at home, which is nice.

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Q. The possibility that Kafelnikov may choose to play twice tomorrow, was that an advantage, disadvantage, no factor at all?

TOM GULLIKSON: You know, he plays singles and doubles every week, you know. He's used to playing singles and doubles on the same day, but not five sets, except in a Grand Slam situation. He's done it a lot.

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Q. Obviously, it looks like it's going to rain through the night. If they had predicted clearing, what was the objection to starting under the lights?

TOM GULLIKSON: Well, we had agreed at the captain's meeting that we wouldn't start a singles match under the lights. That was the original agreement in the captain's meeting. We kind of wanted to stick to that really, because I don't think -- nobody hit one practice ball at night under the lights. I'm sure the lights are good here. I've been assured that they are. I remember from the Olympics that the lights were pretty good here. But, you know, the guys like to acclimate to the conditions. If they knew they were playing at night, they probably would have practiced at night once or twice.

PAGE CROSLAND: Anybody else?

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Q. Would you have preferred to play in, let's say, kind of chilly conditions where the stadium wasn't quite full today or tomorrow, a sunny day, big crowd? Did that go through your mind?

TOM GULLIKSON: Can I tell you after the match (laughter)? I think we wanted to play today, obviously. Our guys are ready to play. They were ready to play, I'm sure. You're always disappointed when you can't start when you want to. But, you know, these guys are all professionals. They go through this every week, getting rained out. We'll regroup and try to get ready for tomorrow.

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Q. Do you remember an rain-out at all? Have you been involved in that at all?

TOM GULLIKSON: This is my first rain-out.

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Q. Are we going to find out what the format is for tomorrow shortly?

TOM GULLIKSON: Yes.

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Q. Can we ask you how you feel once we find out --

TOM GULLIKSON: I'll be here all day tomorrow.

PAGE CROSLAND: Unfortunately, they're going to go practice.

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Q. Would you prefer to play it all three tomorrow?

TOM GULLIKSON: Sure, I would, just because it probably gives us a little advantage. I would prefer it. I'm not the referee.

PAGE CROSLAND: Thanks, Tom.

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End of FastScripts....

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