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August 31, 2003

Roger Federer


MODERATOR: Questions for Roger, please.

Q. Have you ever played a match where you missed as many breakpoints?

ROGER FEDERER: You know, I don't know how many I missed. I know I missed a lot, especially in the second set, you know, McEnroe told me over the speaker, over that head phone. But I've had some tough matches, you know, where I missed probably a similar amount. This is five sets so it gets more. That just happens, you know. I should have maybe made the first or second one. Then you miss it, he gets into the rhythm of serving. Then it gets more difficult. Just happens.

Q. In a set like that, do you think before, you would have worried too much and lost that set?

ROGER FEDERER: No, actually, I always felt, you know, in control of the second set because I was up, I was leading, you know. They were cheering him on, which is normal, you know, like he won the match, basically, when he just held his serve after saving a lot of breakpoints. I still knew I had my break, you know. I was basically in control of my own serve. But obviously when it gets down to a tiebreak, you know, you never quite know. I felt good going into the breaker, actually.

Q. What was it like to play under the lights?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, I've experienced it at the Australian Open a few times. This is different. Crowd got much more into it. They were very, very loud, you know. Very nice experience, really.

Q. No problems with concentration?


Q. Edberg and Borg hated playing under the lights out there?

ROGER FEDERER: I've only played one time and I like it. I might change; I might not change. We'll see.

Q. Did you feel a little like this was just a case of you doing everything this much better than he did (indicating)?

ROGER FEDERER: I don't know. I thought that first set especially, didn't get the rhythm, both of us. There was a lot of fast points. I really didn't feel good out there, especially in the beginning. Just didn't get the grip on the ball, you know, in the cold night session. So I think it took us a while. I started to play better in the end of the first. Got the break. I think really the match started from the second set on. I had like a one-set lead, which was nice, you know. I thought it was great tennis, you know, especially the second set. The third, it always starts again until the end, the sets get better. I'm happy with my performance.

Q. You have a good chance of winning this tournament, especially the way you played today. You have to get through an opponent you've never beaten in the next match. Can you talk about that.

ROGER FEDERER: Beaten him in Juniors (laughter). But also lost to him in Juniors here, at the US Open in the finals. But, you know, obviously, no, I don't have a great record against him. I'm really looking positive into this next match because it's really time I beat him. I've been very close a few times. I'm ready, you know. I got to change something about my game plan, I guess. I'm ready to fight, so...

Q. Could you give us a sense of how well you feel you're actually striking the ball at the moment, tonight.

ROGER FEDERER: Well, I was disappointed in the beginning, as I said. Then it got better. I thought in the end I was playing well. I have the feeling especially I'm returning pretty well. Serving is still a little bit up and down occasionally. I'm happy the way it's going. Also the movement is fine.

Q. The pace of the court, as far as... does it suit you, do you think?

ROGER FEDERER: I think so, yes. You know, if you serve well, you can really play serve and volley. Second serve is difficult. No bad bounce, you know, and all that. For me, it's difficult to really say. My last match was very, very easy, you know. Tonight was in the night. So I don't know what I'm gonna play, you know, next match. Really, the best I felt was in the second-round match, not today.

Q. Do you feel more confident with yourself now that you've won a Grand Slam? You come here as, "Roger Federer, Wimbledon Champion"?

ROGER FEDERER: Yes, much more. I'm much more relaxed towards everything, you know. Much more relaxed (smiling).

Q. He said that your demeanor is such you never give anything away to your opponent. You stay very calm. Your expression stays the same all the way through. That can be a little bit disconcerting. When you go back to the junior days, you were a little bit less than that. Are you pleased with the way you're able to control your emotions, whatever the circumstances of the match are?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, I think it's an advantage. You know, they don't know if I can pull off maybe a shot 10 times in a row. Maybe it was the luckiest shot, you know. I don't need to show them what it was, you know? So I'm keeping kind of also secret for myself, you know.

Q. If you struck a good one out here, do you tend to have a look up?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, is a little different, you know, always the big screen on top. Tend to look a little too much, you know. Got to get used to it. It's really not so easy.

End of FastScripts….

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