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August 31, 1999

Todd Martin


USTA: Questions for Todd.

Q. A little bit more of an adventure than you wanted today?

TODD MARTIN: I don't know if it was an adventure for me. I think it was just -- sure, it was an adventure (laughter).

Q. Were you cramping, too?

TODD MARTIN: No, no, no. Only thing that was sore on me was my toenails from hitting my shoes. I was fine. I would have loved to have been cramping because there would have been reason for me not to play so well.

Q. Were there match points in the third set?

TODD MARTIN: Four match points. Three on his serve at 5-3 and one on my serve at 5-4.

Q. Were you surprised to see that you weren't able to get those?

TODD MARTIN: No. I played fairly good points on match points. It was the points surrounding the match points, the rest of the third set, fourth set, most of the fifth set.

Q. Go through the last bit where he's cramping, I think his leg and his hand.

TODD MARTIN: For me, it really wasn't that noticeable. I'm trying to pay attention to what I'm doing. I didn't see a whole lot of change in the way he was hitting the ball or moving.

Q. What was that you said to yourself after the missed overhead in the tiebreak? Anything that you can repeat?

TODD MARTIN: I didn't say anything except things that shouldn't be in print. I thought a lot of things to myself. The double-fault, I should have caught my toss at 5-Love. Played a fairly good point right behind it. Let cement get in my feet. Just turn my head. At that point, it's pretty easy to ignore. I missed plenty of easy shots.

Q. Pretty brutal wind out there?

TODD MARTIN: The wind was terrible. You know, it's no excuse really.

Q. Decision came down today from Switzerland about the Korda case, and it went against Korda, and strengthened what the players had asked for, what the ITF and ATP wanted, a stronger drug program. The burden of proof is now on the players.

TODD MARTIN: That happened two or three years ago, the beginning of that. You're talking about the press conference we had down in Melbourne this year?

Q. I'm talking about today's ruling.

TODD MARTIN: I understand that. I'm saying a strengthening of the program. The program has always been strong.

Q. They just affirmed it today.

TODD MARTIN: Well, the language is very hazy. That's what's going to be changed now, as soon as Petr's case was over, we're going to get to work.

Q. So your thoughts basically is what I'm asking, your thoughts today on the final ruling?

TODD MARTIN: The final ruling is the final ruling. It's up to CAS. That's what I thought should have been the case right from the get-go. When you leave room to bring the courts into it, like the language of the procedures did, you know, that's what happens. I certainly didn't think that guys should be out to Petr. It's just a matter of upholding the integrity of the sport and the integrity of our program.

Q. Basically you and the other players would be pleased by today's ruling?

TODD MARTIN: Pleased is not the word that would come to mind.

Q. What would?

TODD MARTIN: After four hours of tennis, not many words come to mind. It's disappointing for Petr. That's no way to finish your career. I think everybody, despite the fact that he somehow allowed the substance into his body, I think everybody should have a little compassion.

Q. You've had downtime and surgery. Now Pete is going to have some downtime, but no surgery. You can perhaps be a little more philosophic about what happens to a player when he goes through a period of not being able to do what he does best.

TODD MARTIN: I have no idea the extent of Pete's injury. I really don't. I've heard just now that he pulled out.

Q. The doctor came in with Pete, it was described as a small, herniated disc. No surgery, two months off. You could read in Pete's face -- you've been through some of that, too.

TODD MARTIN: Yeah. I think for me it helped, made something that was ailing, better. It gave me a little time to reflect. One or two months isn't time to sit back and reflect. One or two months is a welcomed break. Six months, a year, or more, I think then you really start to look at things differently and understand how good we got it. I think Pete is going to spend most of those two months in rehab. It's not going to be a lot of time sitting around waiting for things to heal.

Q. Did you have some inner emotional response when you heard about the news of the pull-out?

TODD MARTIN: Yeah. You know, he's a friend of mine. So obviously right there I have some sympathy for him. The fact that he's the best player in the world, this is what I feel is the best tournament in the world, it's a pity that we don't have the No. 1 competing for this title.

Q. Getting back to today. You had a two set to nothing lead at one point. American press is particularly tough on people that blow big leads. Were you thinking about the headlines tomorrow?

TODD MARTIN: No. I was thinking about what I was going to do in retirement. You just play. You certainly don't worry about what the headlines are. Actually, my biggest fault is sometimes I wonder what I'm going to tell you guys.

Q. You said on USA that you wanted to have more fun, enjoy the tennis a little more. What are you going to do in the next round to have it be a better experience for you?

TODD MARTIN: Pray for still weather. Just go out and realize it's just a game, it's there for enjoyment first and foremost.

Q. You're also identified with the Davis Cup. Is it frustrating trying to get the players together, all the pay squabbles? Is there a point where you feel like throwing your hands up?

TODD MARTIN: That point came a few years ago. I think we're getting a little bit better support now. Hopefully that will continue in the future.

Q. When your draw opens up like that, top player goes out, is there a natural tendency to want to get up a little bit more, thinking, "My chances are better," and you have to fight that because you know you still have to play six more matches to play this thing?

TODD MARTIN: You mean emotionally up?

Q. Yes.

TODD MARTIN: That would have very much helped the situation today. I didn't have a whole lot of emotion to get up with today. That's something that's got to change.

Q. Why?

TODD MARTIN: I don't know. I got a haircut yesterday, and I see how much more gray I have. That might actually be serious (laughter). No, sometimes -- I play for the enjoyment. I play for the competition, too. But first and foremost, I play for the enjoyment. The two and a half sets I was up, they weren't enjoyable. It's a pity that I let myself get that way. When things aren't going your way, even though you're winning, I didn't really feel like I was playing well. That's what I wanted to do. It's just hard to change that.

Q. Something externally troubling you right now?

TODD MARTIN: Who is starting for the Browns? No, really nothing externally is bothering me. It's pretty simple. I think everybody has a point in their career where they maybe don't enjoy things as much. I've been very fortunate. I've played for nine years now. I've done a pretty good job of enjoying myself. Just didn't happen today. Hopefully it will happen on Friday.

End of FastScripts….

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