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September 2, 1994

Stefan Edberg


Q. In the -- I think it was the fifth game of the third set you played two -- three very good volleys and he seemed to say something to you?

STEFAN EDBERG: Yeah, he did. I didn't understand what he was saying. I don't know. I couldn't hear what he was saying. He said something, but I couldn't hear what he was saying.

Q. It looked like you were volleying very well today?

STEFAN EDBERG: I played a good match, played a very sold match, and served pretty well and I did everything basically well, and, you know, I felt comfortable out there and it was a really nice match for me to play. It was -- this is the best I've played since Cincinnati.

Q. Is this court taking enough speed away from your serve that you're concerned?

STEFAN EDBERG: No, I won't say so. It is a very fair court and you can stay back, you can come in. I think it is a very nice court to play on. I just wish I can play all my matches out there. It really plays well, I think, but you're always going to have different-- today is pretty cool and dry. You're going to have different circumstances when it gets humid and hot. It varies, but it is a great court.

Q. Is there anything in your game you're not happy with right now?

STEFAN EDBERG: Well, I'm quite happy with the way I'm playing and all I need to do is keep the focus on what I'm doing and going out there working for every point and I have a chance of doing well. It's nothing wrong with my tennis or anything, it's just being out there and fighting.

Q. Is it possible for a time-champion to sneak up on people? Are you getting less attention than --

STEFAN EDBERG: It's always been the same where there's been a lot more attention around other players which has always suited me fine, and this is the way I've liked it in the past, and I still like it that way.

Q. The other day you reminisced a bit about the years past here, both the good times and bad, and it seemed like it was a pretty good atmosphere, pretty light atmosphere here; does the mental approach as the Open gets into, say, the second week, does it start to get a bit more serious?

STEFAN EDBERG: No. Exciting, once you have done the work for the first week, you get into the second week and that really is when you wish you play your best tennis and when it really starts getting exciting. I think you start playing against better players who have already won a couple of matches. So I just hope I will get in there.

Q. Stefan, the last four years you've either won it or gotten out early. Is this a good sign?

STEFAN EDBERG: It's a good sign. I'm in the third round here, but I'm feeling good, I'm playing good tennis this year. I'm feeling pretty fit at the moment, so there's no reason why I should have an early exit here. I just feel good about myself and just try to do what I'm supposed to do out there.

Q. Stefan, did you ever have a different style when you were very young or you were always a serve and volleyer?

STEFAN EDBERG: Well, I started becoming a serve and volleyer when I was about 15. I think, because as a kid, 13 years old, all you know how to do is lob around the back court. So that's really where you sort of start playing serve and volley, I think, if you want to become a serve and volleyer. But I've always played -- try to come in.

Q. Was it your idea or your coach's idea?

STEFAN EDBERG: No, I sort of have developed my own game. I've had a lot of help as well. People tell me what to do, but, you know, you got to find your own way in this -- in tennis, sort of can't copy other players. You can copy it to one extent, but you've got to feel comfortable out there. I always had a good serve and that's the way I want to play tennis, pretty simple.

Q. Did you perfect the volley with a lot of doubles when you were young?

STEFAN EDBERG: I did play a lot of tennis when I was young, a lot of doubles, that helps. Playing doubles and singles is more difficult because you have to move over bigger areas, but I think, you know, if you're going to play serve and volley today, you've got to be a good athlete. You've got to be able to move quick around the court and be flexible around the court. The balls are coming back very quick today.

Q. Stefan, in your free time, are there any other sports you enjoy playing just for fun?

STEFAN EDBERG: I do play a little bit of golf, that's probably the sport that a lot of tennis players do and I do it because it is not physically tiring at all, and you can go out in the nature, see some trees. It's really a great relaxation. I think so. To golf and play 9 holes is two hours of fresh air, get away from the tennis courts, buildings.

Q. You find it rejuvenating?

STEFAN EDBERG: I find it very good.

Q. In a two-week tournament with the best of five sets, at what point does a little bit of the fatigue factor begin to set in?

STEFAN EDBERG: Well, it all depends on what kind of matches that you do have and how you feel, but, it's hard to tell. I mean, if you're in physically good shape, it is not going to affect you too much. But, you know, if -- the schedule can hurt you; rain, having to play back-to-back matches. Actually, if you have a lot of rain, you can end up playing three matches in three days here. Those are the tough things to cope with, but once you play every other day, you have a day off and you have time to recover. So, that's the toughest thing, I think.

Q. As somebody who used to really not like it here at all, would you go so far as to say you've come to love it?

STEFAN EDBERG: Well, I'm not sure. Yeah, I guess I could say that. I do now, but -- because I've won it here. If I haven't had won it, it still would have been a very special place -- it is. It's been around here for many, many, many years because like I once said, who can play tennis here with all the things going around, with airplanes, and it's really tough to come here the first couple of years, but once you've been through it, you almost laugh about it and just get to enjoy it and it's a special atmosphere here, it is.

Q. Are there young players who now come to you and voice those complaints and you kind of shake your head?

STEFAN EDBERG: Not yet, I don't know anybody.

Q. About the style again, Stefan, it seems the serve and volley games leaves a small margin for error. Do you think that because of that it may be one reason that fewer players play it, that it's riskier?

STEFAN EDBERG: I'm not sure why, but it's been a trend that there are less and less serve and volleyer players and there's very, very few around that actually play serve and volley. First and second serve -- there's hardly any left, me and maybe Stich, Krajicek, maybe five guys. And it is -- it is a more difficult game to play because you do play it with smaller margins, but if you can play it well, obviously, it is a very effective way of playing tennis.

Q. Who do you think is on this tour that doesn't play it that would be good at it if they work at it?

STEFAN EDBERG: I don't know. It is a lot. Depends how early you start. If you're going to be a true serve and volleyer, you need to start at a young age. That's the only way to be a true serve and volley player because it takes so many more years to play serve and volley than to play the back court.

Q. Of the Slams, you still like Wimbledon best?


Q. But this has sort of snuck up?

STEFAN EDBERG: Yes, it's been good for me the last couple of years. It has moved up.

Q. The other day Pete Sampras was in here talking about how his game measures up against a lot of other people's. We were talking about whether he could ever totally dominate this tour and he talked about the way he plays Chang well, along with Agassi, Courier, he left you out; do you think that's a total oversight on his part or do you think that's a good example of how people might be forgetting about you a little?

STEFAN EDBERG: I don't know. I usually don't mind playing Sampras too much. I mean, we played quite a few times and we got a pretty even record. If I'm playing good serve and volley, I can stay with him. That's the benefit that I have and obviously he's playing great tennis, there's no doubt about that. It won't last forever. And the biggest problem he has is staying away from injuries. Having an injury like this, he probably can get away with that, but if he has another one, then it's going to be tough.

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