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January 17, 2006

Amelie Mauresmo


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Everyone can play, can't they? Pretty tough?

AMELIE MAURESMO: I didn't get that, but "pretty tough," I can get that. You know, it's just the way I started this tournament. It's not always easy to play first match. I guess the first set was not so easy for me because, obviously, made way too many unforced errors and really took really one set to adjust to the conditions and to the game. Yeah, that's how it starts, and then hopefully it will get better and better as the tournament is going to go. I have the opportunity for the next round, you know, to do better, to improve on a few things and obviously try to avoid the unforced errors.

Q. What did you know about her?

AMELIE MAURESMO: Nothing. I played against her once in doubles, and basically, you know, I could see a little bit of her game, but that was two or three years ago. I guess things change since then. It was very strange and tough to walk on the court without really knowing your opponent, without knowing really what to expect. But, you know, I had to adjust to that, as well. That's the way it is. It has happened to me pretty often in the past. Just have to deal with that.

Q. Did you ask around, how she plays?

AMELIE MAURESMO: I think my coach did here and there to some coaches, so we were able to maybe have a few ideas of what was going to happen.

Q. A game in the second set you had five breakpoints and didn't take any of them. Is that a point where you felt a little panicky?

AMELIE MAURESMO: No, no, no. Not really. Even though I wasn't really playing great tennis, I was still - I think - consistent enough for really give her some trouble. Right from the beginning of the second set, I really felt I was much more into it. Again, even though I wasn't playing my best game, I felt that she was starting to struggle a little bit to make the points. Without the errors I was giving her in the first set then, you know, things are pretty different once the second started.

Q. She was mixing up the speed, moon balls, fast groundstrokes, to upset your movement, I presume.

AMELIE MAURESMO: Well, yeah, honestly, I didn't expect her to do that. I thought she was more of a pace player, on both side hitting the ball pretty hard. I was a little bit surprised when she start doing that. But, as I was saying, you have to adjust. That's just the way it is.

Q. Were you adjusting to your game getting going, or what she was doing?

AMELIE MAURESMO: I think a little bit of both. Actually, my game, the rhythm wasn't really here today. Still, again, you know, it's the first match. Sometimes it goes very well, sometimes you struggle a little bit. That was the case today. Not only with my game, but a little bit surprised with the way she played. I think most of it was my game.

Q. Always tremendous relief first round in a Grand Slam to get through?

AMELIE MAURESMO: Not tremendous relief. It's just a good thing to, you know, be over and done with. Again, you have the opportunity, if it didn't really went the way you wish it was, you have the opportunity for the next round to really do better and make sure you avoid a few things that you didn't do really well.

Q. Do you need to cut down on errors?

AMELIE MAURESMO: I think that's the main -- basically the main thing. Because then, you know, my game is really coming together. Once I cut down on the errors, then I can go forward, come in, go to the net and really be more consistent.

Q. Can you work on that on the practice court?

AMELIE MAURESMO: I think it's a little bit of practice. It's also a little bit of focus and really getting the rhythm back.

Q. It was a good finish to 2005. Obviously, hoping to build on the momentum here.

AMELIE MAURESMO: Yeah, but sometime -- you know, it's two months now since we finished The Championships. I guess it's tough to keep the momentum going when you have such a long period between these two big events without having competition. That's what I'm trying to do. That's what I've been doing actually in practice. It's been working pretty well. Probably need a little time, you know, to do that in competition.

Q. Made the final here way back in '99. It would be nice to get there again.

AMELIE MAURESMO: It would be great, you know. It's a long way till the final day. You know, you just -- I'm just take it one match at a time. But, yeah, would love to be there on the last day.

Q. Did you think back then it would take as long as it has to sort of get to this point, maybe getting close to another one. I know it's the first round, but I'm talking about after your performances last year.

AMELIE MAURESMO: Yeah, I would -- probably at the time, I would have hoped that things would come earlier. But in the same time I then realized how tough it is to be in the last day of these kind of events. I'll just take it as it comes really.

End of FastScripts….

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