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March 15, 2001

Gustavo Kuerten

Indian Wells, CA

MODERATOR: Questions for Gustavo.

Q. At one point, the call seemed to upset you, you were quite demonstrative in banging your racquet on the ground.

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: Yeah, sometimes, you know, the match so close that you get to some level stage that everything that happen wrong, it's crucial. That's what happen that time. I think I just did what I felt. Just an impulse, something that happen.

Q. Is that a sign of how much this tournament means to you?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: No. It's a sign that I like to play, like to compete. When I'm angry, I'm angry. When I'm happy, I'm happy. I don't cover my feelings.

Q. What was he doing tonight that gave you trouble?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: He played well, served good. I didn't feel the ball at all. I did not feel comfortable to play my game. Maybe he did the right thing to don't let me play as I want.

Q. We noticed you didn't grunt tonight. Is there a reason for that?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: No. Just the way the match goes. You know, here, the ball comes and goes too fast, not really big rallies. More I get in the match, the better I feel. Hard court, sometimes it's tough for me.

Q. Were the conditions bothering you? Windy?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: No. I think the way I was playing, I couldn't put my mind all the time on the court. I play well one point and then I play bad the other. I didn't feel like the way I wanted to be to really play in a good level to win this match.

Q. The tiebreak was just like we thought you were going to come back. It looks like you lost it in the tiebreak. Do you have the same impression?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: Yeah, the tiebreak was crucial for me. I had a couple of chances to break him in 5-All. The tiebreak, I miss some bad shots. I got a little disappointed. For sure I play worse the second set than the first. Sometimes it's frustrating. You playing, playing, playing to get to a tiebreak, and then lost the set. I think I felt more than I should this first set when I lost it.

Q. How is it for you to play a double-gripped forehand?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: I try to play my game. Every time I go on court, doesn't matter who I'm playing. I try to be aggressive when I need it. But I miss the shots that I had to made. When I try to be more concern and play a little bit deeper, I was missing sometimes, too. I didn't feel my game to start to do some special tactics. I just was trying to play okay, to feel better, then start to do something different.

Q. Will you be returning to Brazil before Miami?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: Probably tomorrow I'm leaving to Miami or to Brazil. I haven't decide yet. Probably I'm staying in Miami for a few days.

Q. Earlier Goran suggested that Marat Safin would replace him as a player on the court that the fans could learn to enjoy. You have a big fan following. Do you expect to let your personality come through on the court to rival Goran and Marat?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: I think it's nice to have the fans, the people watching. I think it makes the game more excited to play. I hope I have this feeling that there's nothing you can do, just be the way you are. Maybe can bring more or less attention from the fans. I hope I will be able to have success in my career. I think with this I going to have many people and a lot of guys watching my games, my matches. Doesn't matter what I play.

Q. We spoke to Mark Miles about the possibility of having a big tournament in Rio or Sao Paolo. What will be your role if that comes true?

GUSTAVO KUERTEN: At least one. They don't have any. I think we should have something. It's much easy, the guy who lives here, they can play -- maybe they travel two times away from their country. All year along I'm away from my country. That's the only bad thing to be Brazilian. The rest is everything good.

End of FastScripts....

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