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September 1, 1994

Thomas Muster


Q. Thomas, did you expect such a tough match today against him?

THOMAS MUSTER: Pretty much, because, he must have played pretty well again Bates in the first round. I didn't know him so well before, but by my information I expected a pretty tough match, and I mean, I lost one set, which doesn't mean much in best of five, so-- but I think it was okay.

Q. Thomas, some are driven by money, the money in the game, some are driven because perhaps their parents are always expecting them to play well; what drives you to play so hard?

THOMAS MUSTER: Basically, I think if you're playing 11 years and you have made money anyway, it's probably because you like the sport. When you come out as a junior and you start playing first, you play for attention, then you play for press, then you play for your living and then I think there's a stage where you enjoy playing. The man who was in here before probably knows that best.

Q. Does your motivation have anything to do with proving to yourself as well as others that you can play on a surgically repaired leg?

THOMAS MUSTER: I think it has to do with setting up goals which is pretty much what you have to do in every kind of job. If you don't have goals anymore, you don't have motivation, then everything is gone. So it means that's the basic thing to set up goals and follow your goals, and everybody has a certain goal, you know, which you want to reach and one has the ability to be number one in the world and another one top ten, and another other one top 20, but I think you have to go to your limits and I think you have to find out where that is. And this is probably what keeps you playing, even if you have money, even if you have, you know, other things.

Q. And you probably work harder than 95 percent of the players on the tour?

THOMAS MUSTER: I won say that. I would think that today everybody is working pretty hard, because tennis is a business, and tennis is, I think, a very professional sport. I've never seen that many players in the gym like when you look around here, everybody is working out in the gym. Everybody is running and stretching and having physicals and whatever. Ten years ago, that wasn't usual. It was very unusual to have all these things. There were a few guys working out like that. But today you have a whole bunch of guys working out and being fit on the tour and maybe they don't have the strokes, but they're physically fit.

Q. You've talked this year about being in the last third or last quarter of your career; do you think when you come to a tournament like this might be your last realistic opportunity of winning it?

THOMAS MUSTER: No, I don't think so. I'm not the guy who comes here or -- maybe I'm going to Paris to be in Paris. I'm not come to go U.S. Open or Wimbledon or Australia to win it, because I'm a guy who can probably reach the semifinals or finals in a tournament like that. I mean, I had chances and I proved that I can do that, but I'm not somebody who comes here and can say I can win this tournament, like Pete Sampras or probably Courier, whatever, You know, Ivanisevic. They come here to really -- they're favored to win this tournament. I'm not a favorite. I would say I'm a decent player and with a good draw can get to the semifinals and -- even in the finals, it's unexpected, I would say.

Q. Does it feel any different coming into this tournament after a couple of American hardcourt tournaments as opposed to last year when you came straight off European clay?

THOMAS MUSTER: I don't know yet, but last year reached the quarters, so with the preparation I could do the same -- to prove that it was better to come here early and practice. But what I found out is there's no difference coming here, I've been playing, stepping off the Concorde and playing or just playing here two weeks before, it feels the same pretty much.

Q. You were complaining about his pace during the match today, but he wasn't taking any more than the 25 seconds.

THOMAS MUSTER: I wasn't complaining about his pace, he was complaining about my pace.

Q. But you said he had to be ready when you were ready to serve.

THOMAS MUSTER: So he has to go with my pace and I have to go with his pace. Those are the rules.

Q. He wasn't taking the 25 seconds, it's just that you were ready very quickly.

THOMAS MUSTER: That's the most you can take between points, but if I'm ready to serve, he has to take my pace if it's decent. That's what the rules say.

Q. I realize that it's just that you were very quick to get to serve?

THOMAS MUSTER: That's okay. The crowd appreciates this.

Q. Dreekman or Enquvist, you play one of them; can you say anything about them?

THOMAS MUSTER: Doesn't matter. Dreekman, I think pretty much came out of the French Open this year and Enquvist had a knee surgery and is playing pretty well since that time so...

Q. Have you played either?

THOMAS MUSTER: I haven't, so it's pretty hard to say.

Q. Do you feel the surface slower as Boris and Sampras said?

THOMAS MUSTER: I think the balls are a little bit slower than last year, so, I would say it is a little more an advantage for baseliners this year, which, you know, if you are a serve and volley player, he will complain. If you are a baseline player he will probably appreciate this change, but if you win, it's fine. If you lose, you complain.

Q. Thomas, anything you have to do with the leg on a daily basis to keep it at the best possible condition?

THOMAS MUSTER: Not much. It stays pretty well. Just get rid of my blisters.

Q. Do you have the full range of motion that you had?

THOMAS MUSTER: No, I don't have that, but I'm never going to get this back, but I didn't struggle to much. I didn't play two finals in the last two, three weeks. So, I'm a pretty good rester and I practice well, so, it is not much of a problem. My knee is holding up pretty good.

End of FastScripts...

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