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September 8, 1992
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK
Q. Stefan, how scary was that?
STEFAN EDBERG: It was a tough battle all the way through, I
felt, and it was a lot of ups; a lot of downs in this match.
So it happened-- a lot of things, you know, fourth set, fifth
set, so I don't think-- okay, I won the first set. Then I had
a chance to win the second, 6-4 in the tiebreaker, but a few bad
points. I won the third set pretty comfortable. I had the break
in the fourth set, then, suddenly, I lost four or five straight
games. To be down a break in the fifth set, so at that time it
was not good news, but somehow, I managed to get back in the match,
and I fought the way through, and it was nice to come through.
Q. With your performance of today, do you think you will
be able to get through, eventually?
STEFAN EDBERG: Yeah, I think a match like this helps a lot,
because I had to be out there for a long time, over four hours,
and I am feeling, you know, good, physically, so that is not a
problem. I think with a day off tomorrow I am going to be fine
here, when I come back to play the quarters. So it is a good
one for me, I hope.
Q. How does it help you?
STEFAN EDBERG: It helps me, because mentally this was a very
tough match for me. I mean, with having chances-- almost having
the match, losing it, getting it back, and that is always going
to help you when you are-- when you go into the next round. Being
out there for over four hours, you know, that is going to help
me too. Because, I guess, sometimes you need one of those matches,
because the other matches I played, I sort of played under two
hours. So it is sort of good to push yourself in a match like
this, physically, and mentally.
Q. Stefan, that backhand return that you hit in the fifth
set that he stood and watched along with everyone else, if you
were on his side of the net, is that a shot that you would have
to go for; coming back at you?
STEFAN EDBERG: As it all ended up, I had a bit of luck because
it was a reflex off the return and the ball took a funny curve
in the air. He didn't really have any chance on it, because it
was a perfect lob. It was a little bit of luck that I had there.
And it is great, because sometimes you need a little bit of luck.
That is what I needed at that stage, and that brought me to life
Q. And also, we are not accustomed to seeing such emotion
from you; up and down emotion, especially, you actually through
a towel after losing the second set and constantly punching your
fist in the air in the fifth set.
STEFAN EDBERG: This was a match I really wanted, because I lost
to him twice. I have never beaten Richard before, and I said
to myself, you know, before today, I am going to give everything
I have. And if I do that, I know I have a good chance of beating
him, because he is a tough guy. When he is on with that serve,
you know, and he also plays well, returns pretty well, occasionally.
He has got hands-- he is a good player, when he is playing well,
and he is tough to beat.
Q. As you came back after losing that second set, did you
think the match-- at that point, it had the potential to being
about a 90-minute, two hour match; you came back in the chair.
Did you realize this was going to go four hours?
STEFAN EDBERG: I had no idea. After that second set, I was
disappointed, because I had played three or four bad points, lost
the tiebreaker when I had the chance, then, suddenly, I got the
first three games of the third set, then I was actually feeling
very good. There was no problems. I had the chances, Love-40
first game of the fourth set. I didn't take that. I went on
and then I broke him, and I lost, like, 4-5 games. I lost the
rhythm, lost everything. So that was sort of it.
Q. The previous two times that you had played him, do you
think he lost because he was mentally stronger because his game
STEFAN EDBERG: I lost to him in New Haven last year. I wasn't
playing great then. Then, he played a very good match against
me in Tokyo, Suntory, the semi final this year, and you know,
I guess I knew he had a good chance; had beaten me twice before,
I guess he felt pretty confident going in.
Q. Despite that record of 0 and 2, would you consider with
your overall record coming in to Grand Slam like this, that you
would be a favorite?
STEFAN EDBERG: Yeah, I think the way I looked at it today, we
are playing best of 5 set. It's a slam, so I think in that way,
I have an advantage over him because I played enough Slams to
know what it all takes to come through these matches. So I had
that in mind and it is like when I was down three sets in the
fifth set, you know, I thought, you always think back, being down
3-1 in the fifth set in Wimbledon against Boris, and that went
through my mind, sort of quickly, and that makes you sort of believe
Q. You said this was good to push yourself physically and
mentally. What do you take out-- what can you carry out of this
kind of match into a quarters or the rest of the tournament?
STEFAN EDBERG: I think like I said, I will be more prepared
mentally if it gets close like breakpoints. That is why you have--
where you have the edge. I think also when you push yourself
for four hours; sort of you are going -- you always feel a lot
better the next day, even if you are sore, you are really feeling
that you are hitting the ball well. I am sure that is going to
be the case tomorrow. It is always nice when you feel you are
-- you feel like hitting that serve for four hours. You need
those, because it is not the same thing practicing for four hours.
It is you know, playing a match like this, it is like 20, 30
hours of practice.
Q. In a tough long match like today when momentum shifts,
do you sense like he is a younger player so he like gets down
on himself or you just concentrate on yourself?
STEFAN EDBERG: He didn't get down on himself. I mean, okay
he makes mistakes, but he also makes great points sometimes, because
I think he has got nothing to lose really. I mean, he is the
underdog in this match, and okay, once he gets tight, he may not
have as much experience.
Q. You are looking across the net. Do you sense he is down
or do you concentrate on your game?
STEFAN EDBERG: Of course you notice what your opponent is up
to. He didn't look to tense at any point of the match really.
He was concentrating pretty well, I thought.
Q. Anyway that you can tell-- last year when you got to
this stage, you played super tennis, great tennis for three, four
matches. Anyway you can tell from this kind of thing that maybe
you can click it in to the same way?
STEFAN EDBERG: If I can tell you, I would tell you. I think
the momentum is there, at least I am feeling, -- I felt good all
the way through in this tournament, and you know, I got a tough
battle next round here, but I know the potential is there, and
sure, as long as I go in with a positive mind, it should be a
good match next one.
Q. What do you think about playing Boris or Ivan in the
STEFAN EDBERG: They will have to play first, but I think there
is-- I think Boris will be the favorite because he has beaten
Ivan quite a few times now, and I am not sure whether Ivan is
playing well enough right now. But you never know, if he gets
up to it, he can give Boris a tough match, I believe.
Q. Did you hear somebody call "fault" on his last
serve and do you think it interfered with his last volley?
STEFAN EDBERG: I think it was a doublefault. Something happened,
I didn't really know. I just hit the ball over the net. But
something happened. I thought it was a doublefault, but I just
hit the ball, and then I saw him hesitate, so there may have been
somebody called in the air.
Q. How strange would it be if you would have to play Becker
in the quarters finals after you guys have played so many times
STEFAN EDBERG: It is like going back to 85. That is what would
happen. In the last few years, we are always going to be on one-half
or we play in the semi-finals. So it would be a little bit different
if that would happen, but you know, whenever I play Boris, that
is something which I know it's a tough one to beat. Is he a tough
cookie. On the other hand, if you can beat him, you are always
going to feel good after that.
Q. You talked about losing your rhythm at the end of the
fourth set, early in the fifth. How did you get it back?
STEFAN EDBERG: I had to work, I had to work for it. Sometimes
if you fight for every point, just give that little bit extra,
it is going to come back. And it did. But you also need to hit
a few good shots, that is always going to help.
Q. Before this match did you know-- you said the potential
is there. Do you know now that the potential is there to play
STEFAN EDBERG: Yeah.
Q. Before this match did you know that the potential was
STEFAN EDBERG: Yeah, I did, because like I said, I have been
hitting the ball well during this tournament, and I just need
to keep it going. Just need to keep you know, fighting every
match here. That is what it is going to take, I think.
Q. You were much like they were saying earlier very emotional
today. Are you at all conscious of being an entertainer at all
or are you only thinking tennis?
STEFAN EDBERG: Well, I am still a tennis player.
Q. I realize--
STEFAN EDBERG: No, I mean, the way I play on the court, it is
sort of a day like that, it was exciting and I wanted to win,
and then it is always going to help if you push yourself, you
know, you keep the fist going, and get excited; that is always
going to bring you that little bit of extra. And it did today.
It helped me today. But of course, it helped the crowd to get
going a little bit. I guess that is nice.
Q. Thank you.
End of FastScripts....