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August 3, 2004

Roger Federer


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Can you just start by describing the end of that match and the way it went from your perspective.

ROGER FEDERER: Well, it was a pity, you know. I couldn't get a win in two. Had the chances definitely in the second set. You know, missed many occasions. I thought I played really well for one set and a half. Like I said, you know, the missed opportunities in the second set maybe paid because in the beginning he was, you know, giving me quite a few points. You know, he was missing his shots. And in the second, end of the second and the third, he wasn't. So that's the ones I was calculating with, and he didn't give it. So he played well.

Q. How did you feel going into this match: Ready or a little bit still tired?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, I have to be ready. You have to do everything to be ready. Obviously, it's difficult, you know, always to bounce back from victories. But I've done it in the past, you know, in tougher conditions, you know, tougher changes, like in Wimbledon to Gstaad and those kind of tournaments. So, you know, it's maybe one tournament too much for me, you know, to always keep winning. So, you know, I'm not too disappointed. People shouldn't feel sorry for me, because I've had a great run. The streak's at its end now. So I can leave, I've got a few more days off. That's the positive side of it.

Q. Do you think you've got any kind of an advantage because you know each other so well, you play doubles together?

ROGER FEDERER: No, not at all. I mean, I've played many friends on the tour. I play them, you know, almost every week because I don't have only one friend on the tour. So I don't think that plays a role. I mean, he was really strong with his rhythm in the beginning. Took advantage of it. I really served well. I got one break in the third set, which cost me the match. So that was unfortunate. I didn't serve well that game. But at that point I already felt like from the baseline there was not much I could do anymore. I was really strong with the rhythm. Balls were flying here. Was different conditions to Toronto, so I didn't have enough time to get used to it.

Q. You mentioned the streak. Had you won today, it would have equaled the longest winning streak since 1995. Is there any disappointment knowing you were so close to that mark?

ROGER FEDERER: Not at all. Not at all. If it would have equaled it, you know, it really wouldn't matter, you know, those streaks. I'm on the board. I'm I don't know what number now. So that's not going to do anything to me. You know, I would have been really disappointed to have lost in Toronto in the finals because that would have broken a couple of streaks at the same time so...

Q. Cincinnati doesn't seem to agree with you. Your fourth tournament here, first round loss.

ROGER FEDERER: Well, you know, two years ago there was different problems, you know. This year, you know, I came up against a good player. I was tired from Toronto, and my opponent took advantage of it. And last year I lost to Nalbandian, you know, who was always tough for me, you know. And at least I could turn that around. But the first time I was here, you know, I was not the favorite. So there always has been reasons why I lost here. But the conditions, you know, they are tricky here. The ball flies very much. It's very humid and hot. But, you know, I'm -- so far I'm happy with this American trip, you know, to have won a tournament. I would never have thought I would win Toronto. Now it's obviously a little bit of a disappointment to really leave so early. But like I said, it gives me a few more days and important days' rest because I need them badly.

Q. Is there any shock that this happened in the first round? Some players have called you "unbeatable" this summer.

ROGER FEDERER: Unbeatable, that's not gonna mean I'm going to win all my matches. I've lost four this season. This is my fifth. There's no problem with that. I always know how difficult the early rounds are. I haven't lost since I think French Open in the first round, French Open last year. It's over a year, and that was also something I was proud of, you know, to have never lost in the first round. But there are reasons today why I lost. But I have no problems to accept this, you know, because he got into it. I couldn't close it out. I should have, and I didn't. Because usually I would say I would sneak through these rounds and then get the feel for the tournament. But, you know, he got me, so...

Q. Is a loss easier to take given all the success that you've had?

ROGER FEDERER: I didn't understand the beginning.

Q. Is a loss easier to take because of all the success you've had?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, obviously. Yes, very much. I mean, obviously, I'm a match player, I'm a winner. I always want to win. When I lose, you know, obviously I'm disappointed and I ask myself "Why," "What happened?" But I gave it all I had today. Was just unfortunate. That second set, you know, I was very disappointed with myself I couldn't play better on the big points. But it was just -- I felt it, you know, the feel wasn't there. I tried to, you know, play around it and I couldn't. So that was a disappointment. And I think the more, you know, the more you win, also the easier it gets when you lose. Because you're not as excited when you win, but you're not as excited when you lose as well. Because I've been through so much. So for me, this loss is tough, you know, because I would like to play better in Cincinnati. But that's how it goes.

Q. So where do you go now? Do you go back home for a couple extra days?


Q. For the Olympics, that will help a lot, big-time for you, right?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah. I mean, obviously, I would have preferred to always have the good problem and be tired and leave at the end of the tournament like in Toronto. But if you forget what just happened, you know, 15 minutes ago, half an hour ago, you know, I'm looking forward to actually almost a week's rest now. So I'm leaving on Wednesday to Athens and until then, you know, I have nothing on my schedule, which is nice.

Q. At this stage in your career, would you rather have the Olympic gold from this year or this year's US Open title?

ROGER FEDERER: I don't compare, you know, what is more important, you know. I said that my three goals of the year are No. 1 in the world, Wimbledon, to defend that title, and the Olympics. So I guess this year the Olympics are more important than US Open. But once the Olympics are over, I want to win US Open as badly as Olympics, you know. Basically it is a goal to win every tournament very badly because I love playing matches and tournaments. But I would say, you know, I would rather come home with a gold medal than maybe the US Open. But that's just this year because it's the Olympic year.

Q. You've played so much tennis this summer. How much was fatigue a factor out there today?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, definitely very much. Especially yesterday. I was totally exhausted. But in a way you don't allow yourself to be tired, you know. For me, tiredness is no problem, you know. Where I'm getting worried is when I'm getting injured, you know. So far I haven't. I'm happy I'm not injured leaving this place. I know it's all about recovery, having some time for myself, having time for my body to recuperate from all the traveling, from all the stress happening off court, on court, the moving. So there was definitely fatigue out there today, but I've been playing with fatigue for quite some time now (smiling). Eventually, it catches up with you.

End of FastScripts….

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