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January 27, 2001

Jonas Bjorkman

Todd Woodbridge


MODERATOR: Questions for Todd and Jonas.

Q. Todd, it was such a long and great partnership with Mark Woodforde, how long did you spend thinking about retirement?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: Did I think about it? In the sense of the two of us?

Q. When Mark made the decision to go, did you --

TODD WOODBRIDGE: Did I think of going with him?

Q. Yes.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: Not really. I'm still only 29. I still played well last year. I still felt like I had some majors in me, like one today. I still think I have some more. That was one of the driving forces of not wanting to go with Mark. It would have been easy to, mind you. But I still think I can play well enough and do well enough with the right partner to continue on. I guess I was right. You know, I still am able to hang in there. It was good to get a bit of time off after Mark and I finished at the Olympics and separate what was our career, I took three months off and then started a new, fresh perspective and a new look at what would be like a second career or another phase of my career. That helped enormously coming into a new partnership.

Q. What is he like?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: He's bringing me out of my shell a little bit. I have to go and dance on the court, all this sort of stuff. Occasionally I put my hat on backwards, let my shirt hang out, all stuff I never did before (laughter). He's a lot of fun. You know, I enjoy playing with him because he gives 110%. That was one of the things that was important to me. Jonas is an all-around tennis player: he plays singles, he plays doubles, he plays mixed, and he wants to improve his game. That was the same motivations for myself, and has been when I've wanted to be a tennis player. That's I think why, you know, we can be successful.

Q. Jonas, was that a criteria of the partnership, that Todd had to come out of his shell?

JONAS BJORKMAN: Yeah, I'm going to try to get him the pink shirt and the pink pants, as well, for the golf. That's the next step. But, I mean, for me it's great to get the opportunity to play with Todd. Unfortunately, Mark finally took the step to retire. But for me, it sort of gets to another point in my doubles career, as well, that I get the feeling of, you know, winning the big ones maybe more often, and not only in Melbourne, maybe have a chance, with his experience, to win one of the other ones. I just hope we can manage to do that. You know, the team has been working very good. Today Todd managed to hang us in there in that very important third set when I was struggling a lot. That's what it's all about: when you have a good partner you can trust. That's a good combination when someone is down, the other guy can lift you up. That was a big key today.

Q. Is this Australian Open championship any different to the one you won with Pat, or the one that you won with Mark?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: It's a lot different for me because it's the first Slam since the '80s, I want to say, that I've played with a different partner. I played with Mark Woodforde in every Grand Slam from I think we teamed up in 19 --

JONAS BJORKMAN: -- 60 something (laughter).

TODD WOODBRIDGE: Whatever he reckons, whatever the maths is. It's the first time I played a Slam with another partner. It's a totally different experience for me. I started in straightaway really well. It didn't faze me anyway.

Q. Any news on the endorsement side?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: No. Maybe I can ride on the coattails of Jonas now. We can look at his company and see what happens. This certainly will help, that's for sure.

End of FastScripts....

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