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 7, 1999

Tommy Haas

Flushing Meadows, New York

USTA: Questions for Tommy.

Q. What makes Pioline such a difficult player?

TOMMY HAAS: Well, I don't know if he was difficult today. I think it was more the tough conditions, you know, with the wind. I had a tough time getting a little bit used to that. I started off the first and second set with a break. If I can't finish off those sets in the Round of 16 in a match in the Grand Slam, you know, that's tough.

Q. Were you carrying an injury coming into the match?

TOMMY HAAS: No. I actually got the injury in the first round that I played, beginning of the third set against Enqvist. I pulled something in my hip flexor.

Q. Still suffering from it?

TOMMY HAAS: Hurting me a little bit, sure. I would be lying if I said no. It's not that I can't play or give it 100%, so.

Q. Was the weather brutal out there?

TOMMY HAAS: Yeah. It's really tough to play. I'm usually not a very calm person. I go pretty crazy. You know, easy things can bother me. It's very tough for me to keep quiet and calm and just play. I think I have to do a little bit with that. That was a factor today. Obviously if you're up a break, you got to try to hold it. I lost it twice in the first and in the second. It's tough.

Q. Based on your expectations coming in, to have reached the Round of 16, can you come away feeling at all good about that? Right now, you're just experiencing disappointment?

TOMMY HAAS: I mean, you know, I always try to come here and play my best tennis. That's what I try to do. I'm happy about that. Obviously, you know, it's nice to go farther, if you can. Today was not the best day that I have. Obviously the conditions were tough. Just have to look at the bright side; I could have been out in the first round, too. Round of 16 for me, it's all right. I got some points again for my ranking. It's all right.

Q. Is that a match you should have won?

TOMMY HAAS: I don't know if I should have won. I mean, Pioline is a very difficult player, obviously. He's very dangerous. You never know with him. From the papers, maybe I'm in front of him in the ranking, so that's why I should have won. Like I said, you can lose against anybody, even out of the Top 100. Depends on how you feel during the day, how you play, how the conditions are. Just today wasn't a good day for me.

Q. Sure you'd like to see yourself into a final in the Grand Slam. You're into the Grand Slam Cup. That says you've been very consistent through the four Slams. Will you come away from this year thinking you made very significant progress?

TOMMY HAAS: Yeah, definitely. I mean, when I was in the Compaq Grand Slam Cup last year, I did the draw there, pulling the names. They were asking me if I would like to play one year. I said, "Sure, why not next year?" I'm happy I qualified this year so can I play there. It's in my hometown. That's the important thing. You have to try to be consistent, you know, all the time. That's why I say, you know, with the Round of 16, I can't be too disappointed. I was seeded, I don't know, 14 here. If you can keep that up, maybe once in a while you get a break also, you know, you can go farther in tournaments.

Q. You are responsible for German tennis after Becker.


Q. After Becker retired, now you're the No. 1 of German tennis. Do you feel more responsibility or pressure?

TOMMY HAAS: No. If Becker would still play or not, it wouldn't make a difference to me. It's my game, my life, it's the way I play tennis that's important now. Obviously he's gone. Germany maybe looks for other players who come into the top. I think they have, with me and Kiefer, two good players that are pretty high in the rankings. Each played very good this year. Won a couple tournaments, get to the finals, whatever. But there's no pressure. You just have to try to do the best you can.

Q. Do you have expectations of winning Grand Slams?

TOMMY HAAS: No. Obviously, if I win a Grand Slam, I'd be very happy, but it's not a must.

Q. What is missing in your game right now that will take you to the next level?

TOMMY HAAS: I don't know yet. If I figure it out, I'll tell you.

Q. Do you think you played the big points well today? There were big points the first set, second set, third set. You had lots and lots of opportunities. Were you unable to focus?

TOMMY HAAS: I think he played them better than me. Every time I got close, he returned the ball right in front of the line. Even if you have short balls today, you had to be really focusing and set up the point really well. Otherwise, if you had a little miss-hit or you were not setting right with the ball, you'd miss it because of the wind. He won the big points. That's how you win the match.

Q. The casual fan probably never heard of you before this tournament began. Arthur Ashe Kids Day, that was great exposure. Have you found that people have recognized you more? Has it been better for business endorsements being visible here?

TOMMY HAAS: I mean, obviously it's nice to play on the Arthur Ashe Stadium. Obviously, before that, I haven't done really much in the Grand Slam here at the US Open. In the States, it's tougher to get recognized. I mean, it doesn't bother me at all. If you play well, you get far, obviously you get recognized more because you have more attention. If that comes, it's good. If not, it's good also.

Q. Will you be sticking around New York City for a while?

TOMMY HAAS: No, I'm going home.

Q. When is Nick getting married?

TOMMY HAAS: I have no idea. You'd have to ask him.

Q. You'd know.

TOMMY HAAS: I would have no idea about that. I would tell him maybe not to.

Q. Why would you tell him not to?

TOMMY HAAS: That's private. I keep that to myself.

Q. Is Pioline playing well enough to win this tournament, or players like Agassi and Kafelnikov, maybe Krajicek are a little bit of a level above him?

TOMMY HAAS: Well, like Kafelnikov said, there's only three people who can win the tournament. You know, I don't know. I personally have my person I think who's going to win the tournament. Obviously the draw opened up a little bit with Pete not being here, who was obviously one of the favorites to win, and Rafter also who played here good the last two years. Pioline, I don't know, he has a good game. Personally I don't think he has enough strength now. He has had a tough four matches maybe to go all the way. You never know who can go farther. You just have to wait and see who wins.

Q. Who is the person you think is going to win?

TOMMY HAAS: I don't know. I mean, I think Agassi looks pretty good.

Q. Why?

TOMMY HAAS: Well, if you look at him, you know, he's very fit. He looks fitter than ever. He's on fire. He's playing really well every tournament, very consistent. I think with the crowd and everything, I think he has a good chance. Hopefully, the conditions are going to get better for him. If it's windy like that, it's tough for anybody.

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