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June 25, 2003

Roger Federer


MODERATOR: Good afternoon, Ladies and Gentlemen. Roger Federer. Questions in English.

Q. Next round, Mardy Fish, very dangerous player who had a pretty good Australian Open with a good win there, reaches a final last week in Nottingham. What is your personal scouting report on Mardy Fish?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, you know, I'm not really thinking yet too much about this match. First of all, I know myself that he's dangerous. You know, he's the same age. He's got a good hard court, fast surface game - good return, serves well. Very well all around. Yeah, I've got to watch out and prepare like I do for every match.

Q. Going back to this match today, a solid, good match under your belt. Can you tell us what are the areas where you feel comfortable, and if you have a few problems still adapting to the grass?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, you know, first of all, it's a big change, you know, to suddenly play on Centre Court, from Court 2, you know, it's much bigger. It's maybe the best court right now on this planet, you know. It's very special to go out there, you know, especially with a friend, Koubek, you know, I know him well and I like him. I was just getting used to this big court also a little bit. Where I'm really happy is that after the rain delay, you know, I came back and played more aggressive. You know, I served better. Peter told me here and there what I have to adjust. You know, I came back and I did all this really well. You know, in the beginning he hit really hard. It was tough for me to play aggressive. You know, almost lost that first set. No, I'm very happy to have won today.

Q. Any things you should improve maybe?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, always. You know, I thought, you know, the grass is quite slippery. You have to watch out. You know, I fell twice. Could have been injury. Who knows, you know. But this happens. Otherwise, serve and volley game can always improve. But, you know, I was pleased with my serving in the end, and the returning today was solid, so...

Q. A couple years ago you played a pretty good serve and volley player here and beat him, Pete Sampras. Of course, Mardy is going to be playing a lot of serve and volley. You do feel comfortable returning serve on this surface, don't you?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah. I mean, as I said, today I felt good, you know, already. In my first round match I felt good returning. Same thing in practice in the last week, you know. So I really feel like I'm returning well. But I know he's got a bigger serve than the two guys I played so far.

Q. How easy is it, with Lleyton out of the competition, to kind of make sure you don't lose focus on what lies ahead and look at the draw and think this is a big chance and forget that you have to go out on the court and perform?

ROGER FEDERER: You know, best-of-five-set matches are too tough to think too far ahead - for me anyway. I know, you know, I'm the best seed now in the top half. But I don't look at myself like I'm already in the final. You know, other guys have good chances to do the same, you know. Next round, you know, is difficult with Fish. I cannot look too far ahead. I don't want to do that.

Q. You mentioned you slipped a couple of times. Is that something that's in the back of your mind, you might fall over at any time?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, you know, it doesn't help. You feel a little bit unsecure (sic) with your movements. You don't actually know why you slipped, you know. Putting normal pressure, you know, on the leg to hit the ball, and then you slip away. You know, you get a little worried. But it's just important to try to forget this, you know.

Q. Do you find that the court is playing true - the ball is bouncing well, you're not getting many awkward bounces? Last year particularly I know you were only here for a short time, but players were saying that the courts were playing rather slow for grass. This year, particularly Agassi was saying in a way it's because it's playing well, it's playing true, not bouncing too low or sliding.

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, but there's definitely not a lot of bad bounces here. It's quite amazing. I started in Halle, you know, and you get bad bounces all the time. Such bad bounces, you're totally lost, you know, sometimes. Here on Centre Court or basically practice courts, even at Aorangi, you don't get any bad bounces. This definitely improves the level of play. It definitely helps the returner. If you have bad bounces, especially where the area is where you move around for the net, it affects where you're going to serve, you know. Normally there you get some bad bounces. Here it's just nothing. You know, this helps to return serve a lot. This is why maybe also it's very difficult to serve and volley on second serves. This is why also the guys return no problem. I'm serving a hundred miles an hour and the guy just blocks it back, no problem. The bad bounce has definitely got something to do. But also, you know, I feel the ball is bouncing high. So you have no problems playing baseline tennis here, too.

End of FastScripts….

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