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August 19, 2005

Lleyton Hewitt


THE MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, Lleyton Hewitt. Questions, please.

Q. Must be good to go out and get a quick one like that while Andy struggles a little bit and has to be out there a little longer. Is it nice to go in and be done quickly?

LLEYTON HEWITT: It's nice to finish before midnight. I didn't really care when Andy finished, it was more trying to get in bed at a decent hour.

Q. You and Andy have had some pretty interesting matches over the years. Is there one match that sticks out in your mind as the definitive match between you two?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Not really. You know, the first couple of matches we played I was probably, yeah, I was one of the top guys in the world and he was on his way up. So first time we played in Miami - I think it was - that was one of his first tour events; he beat Sampras earlier in the tournament. The last couple of times, last three or four times we've played, we've both been at the top of the game and we've had some extremely tight matches. The biggest one was probably the Aussie Open semifinal I'd say this year.

Q. What is it about the matchup between you two that has given you the edge?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Well, as I said, the first couple were, yeah, he was on the way up and I was at the top. So, you know, that was probably a little unfair advantage. But, you know, the last few, the one he got me at was on grass at Queen's Club and he played extremely well that day. I probably didn't play my best tennis in that period. But, you know, still, he's a tough player to play any time.

Q. You've cruised the last couple matches. Do you feel like you're starting to get into a groove?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it got better and better. Yeah, tonight's the best that I've played all week, so that's a huge positive. And, yeah, it's good to play a guy like Davydenko who's ranked, you know, six or seven in the world now. He's not easy, but you've got to play well to beat him. He's not going to give you the match. It's good to come through those matches, especially in preparation for the US Open in just over a week's time. Now step it up and play I guess a better player, better all-around player than Davydenko is Andy Roddick now. So it's good to see where your game's at and, you know, really test yourself a week before the Open.

Q. What's been your toughest match so far in the tournament from your perspective?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Uhm, well, score-wise maybe the Rusedski match in the second round, but I didn't nearly play my best tennis in that match so I made it a lot tougher on myself than it probably should have been. But he played extremely well and there was a lot of tight, crucial points in that match. The last two rounds I've really stepped it up when I needed to against both Ancic and Davydenko, who are two worthy opponents.

Q. Does a player with a big serve bother you very much other than -- is that a challenge for you?

LLEYTON HEWITT: It's always a challenge, but a lot of guys out there now got pretty big serves. Obviously, Andy's one of the biggest - if not the biggest out there. But you go out there with the mindset that he's going to hit a lot of aces, he's going to hit a lot of unreturnable serves, and you got to really focus on your game and take your opportunities when they come because against guys like that you're not going to get as many opportunities as maybe playing some other top stars or players out there. So you really got to take your chances.

Q. That serve is so much more effective on grass. How much does moving to the hard court take away some of that?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Uhm, I don't know. When I played him in Queen's, I didn't find a huge difference on grass than grass and hard court. I think he comes off pretty well on hard court as well (smiling). You know, he still gets a fair few aces and cheap points on hard court. I don't think there's a huge difference. I think clay, there's a lot bigger difference.

End of FastScripts….

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