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September 9, 1998

Amanda Coetzer

U.S. OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP, Flushing Meadows, New York

Q. You kept saving those match points. Looked like you may do something there.

AMANDA COETZER: With a little luck, maybe I could have. With just a little more luck, maybe I could have, you know, gotten back. 5-All would have been good.

Q. You've played her before, but this is probably the biggest physical mismatch in the history of women's tennis. What is it like playing against her?

AMANDA COETZER: I mean, just the way -- not so much the size, but the way she hits the ball is intimidating. She hits really hard and deep. Points are over pretty quickly. You know, you often feel like you don't really have a say in what's going to happen at the end of the point.

Q. Think she's playing a lot better now than when you played her in the past?

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah. I mean, I've played her quite a few times. I think she's definitely moving a little bit better. Yeah, I think she's got a lot of confidence behind her, so she doesn't get down on herself too often. She's definitely playing well.

Q. What is it like, you're out there, probably 15,000, 16,000 people, you get bageled in the first set? Is it an awful feeling? What do you do to pull yourself together?

AMANDA COETZER: I mean, it's not a good feeling. It's a huge challenge to try and somehow focus on the next point, you know, not really think about the score. I mean, obviously I realize there's not a lot of tennis going on, not a lot of good balls being hit. There's a lot of errors in the beginning. It's tough. It's definitely a huge challenge to try and concentrate. I think that's really a big test for your concentration.

Q. How about the weather conditions, the delays, in and out, stop and start?

AMANDA COETZER: I think, you know, if I really have to look at it, probably the wind and the delays probably helped me a little bit. I was definitely struggling with the way she was hitting the ball on the one side specifically. But often the wind is a little bit of an equalizer. Just the rain delays gave me a little bit of an opportunity to slow things down, really have a chance to speak to my coach, you know, just have some time to think about a few things, because it was really going very fast in the beginning.

Q. Do you think that Lindsay could win this, the way she's playing?

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah, I think -- I haven't really -- I've been -- I haven't watched too many of Lindsay's matches. I've been watching a little bit of Venus. I think it's going to be a big test tomorrow. I think Venus has been hitting the ball really well. I think it's going to be a really interesting match. I think from here on, it's really hard for me to say, to pick one winner. I think it's wide open.

Q. What do you think has been the biggest improvement in Lindsay's game, say over the last year or so?

AMANDA COETZER: I'd say just, you know, she's gained a lot of confidence. Like I said, she's moving pretty well. Obviously, today it wasn't -- the last time I played her was in Tokyo. I thought she was serving really well. Obviously today with the wind, it was hard for anybody to serve great. But I think that's probably helped her over the last few months to do well.

Q. Is this the worst wind conditions you've ever faced at the US Open?

AMANDA COETZER: At the US Open, yeah. Australia, it gets pretty windy. But I think this has been one of the toughest conditions.

Q. Can you in your mind, to us or somebody sitting there, you see 6-0 --

AMANDA COETZER: You don't want to let that go, Bud (laughter). You keep coming back to it.

Q. But you lose a set 7-6, it's still a lost set. Is that how you try to put it in your mind, It's just a set?

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah. You know, that's what my coach said to me. "It's one set. It could have been 7-6. It's over." But I think the best way to relate to it is just putting myself in that position. I've won sets 6-Love to somebody. It's very difficult, especially if you maybe just let your concentration, slip a little, all of a sudden you lose the first couple games of the next set, which I did have the opportunity to do. It's very difficult. It's not easy winning a set 6-0, because you know that your opponent all of a sudden has nothing to lose, and they can just start going for a few shots.

Q. What do you think of Martina versus Jana?

AMANDA COETZER: It's hard to say. I think probably the way Martina played her match last night against Monica, she would have gained a lot of confidence. But, again, Jana has done great. It will be an interesting match.

Q. You said the field was wide open. Would you say this is Davenport's best chance to win a Grand Slam she's had?

AMANDA COETZER: I guess, you know, last year was probably an opportunity for her. I don't know, she lost to Jana in the quarters or semis or something. So it's hard to say really. There are really a few tough opponents there right now. It's by no means going to be easy, I think. But, yeah, she definitely has a chance.

Q. Do you think there's any difference in the way players regard Jana now that she's won Wimbledon? Do you think it's changed at all?

AMANDA COETZER: It's hard for me to say really. I can't really answer that.

Q. Lindsay said, at one point, I guess it was the last game, probably the longest of her career. Have you played one that long, that rally from the baseline?

AMANDA COETZER: I may have in my match against Conchita. I'm not sure.

End of FastScripts…

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