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September 7, 1998

Amanda Coetzer

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

Q. Seemed like you kind of lost your way for a bit after her injury time-out. What kind of effect did that have at that time?

AMANDA COETZER: I didn't really think I lost anything, concentration or anything. It was a tough game that we played. It was a very long game. You know, just kind of gets to the point where, you know, it really gets hard. Especially because I had all the ads. I rushed a bit here and there. I don't think the fact that she had an injury time-out affected me.

Q. How nice is this win? She's beaten you 12 out of the last 13 times you've played.

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah, it's very nice. Definitely, she's been a very tough opponent for me my whole career. It's great, especially because it's at a Grand Slam.

Q. What does she have that makes her difficult for you to beat?

AMANDA COETZER: I think, you know, I just never felt like I really went out with a good game plan. I went out playing her, getting a little bit confused and frustrated. I think today, you know, I really set out to -- even if I lose the match, to not get frustrated, just go out with a specific game plan and stick to it.

Q. What was your game plan today?

AMANDA COETZER: Well, I mean, I'm not going to go into every single detail of it.

Q. In general, did you try to attack her backhand or something like that?

AMANDA COETZER: No, not specifically. I mean, it's more based on just my own game and trying to play my own game the best I can. That's pretty much it.

Q. Did you notice her neck injury? Could you tell she had a neck injury?

AMANDA COETZER: No. I know she's had something, a chronic neck problem. I mean, I don't really -- I try not to pay too much attention to that kind of thing.

Q. I might be wrong, but I think this is the furthest you've gone in a Slam since the beginning of last year.


Q. Are you playing your best tennis since then at this point?

AMANDA COETZER: I think I'm definitely getting there. I've been feeling very good coming into the tournament. Just every match, feeling a little bit better. I feel like it's all coming together. So, yeah, I think it's the best I've played in a long, long time.

Q. How would you describe how Lindsay Davenport has been playing this summer, and what are the biggest challenges of her game?

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah, she's -- you know, she just hits the ball so well. She hits her groundstrokes really well and hits them deep and hard. She takes control of the point very quickly. I feel like, you know, she's improved her serve a lot over the last couple years. So, yeah, she's tough to beat.

Q. Could you give us a scouting report on Nathalie?


Q. Yes.

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah, I mean, she's a tough opponent. She comes in very well. She's very effective coming into the net. She serves well. She can really make good shots. She really has very good hands, so she can come up with some amazing shots. She's a dangerous player, I think.

Q. Is there a sense that Davenport is much tougher mentally now than she has been in past years?

AMANDA COETZER: I mean, I guess, yeah. Her results have shown that. So, yeah, I guess I would go with that.

Q. The third set today, was it a test of nerves? What did it take to overrun her?

AMANDA COETZER: Well, I think conditioning today was a key factor. It was hot out there. We were out there for a long time. We had some really long points. It was really a test, you know, physically, whether you can stay with it. I think also concentration-wise, because we have such long points, you really have to make an effort to stay with it, be there on the next point after a very long point. Often you play a long point, then you play a couple easy points. I think, especially in the third set, that was something I really had to concentrate on, and really, really make a commitment to do.

Q. Pretty rewarding then to accomplish that?

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah, very, very much.

Q. Do you still have the same fitness regime that you had with Gavin, even though you're not working with him anymore?

AMANDA COETZER: No, I've changed it a little bit, adapted it with my new coach. I think, yeah, it's working really well. I like the way -- I like his approach. Yeah, I think I'm probably not as fit as I can be yet, but I'm really looking forward to the end of the year, giving it some time to really set in.

Q. But are you as fit as you were when you were with Gavin?

AMANDA COETZER: I think, yeah, definitely, at times.

Q. Do you generally enjoy The Open and the atmosphere, surface, coming here? Or is this not one of your favorite tournaments?

AMANDA COETZER: It's definitely one of my favorites. I love coming here. Especially this new stadium has really made a huge difference. I love the way it plays in there, definitely more than the old stadium.

Q. What's the difference?

AMANDA COETZER: Why does it play different? I don't know. It's just a feeling. I think because there's a lot of concrete around you, you really hear the ball very well when you make contact. I think just the way the seats are structured right around the court, it's a little bit more of a friendly atmosphere than the old one.

Q. A lot of the players have said that this surface is faster than the surface on the old stadium court. Because you're so quick, does that help you? Does that give you a specific advantage?

AMANDA COETZER: Yeah, I'm not sure about that. I did practice on the old stadium. I thought that was pretty quick, too. I didn't really notice the quickness today. But, you know, I was playing somebody who plays a lot of topspin. I think it suited my game today, definitely.

End of FastScripts…

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