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April 18, 2000

Jerome Golmard


Q. How does it feel to come back in this club one year later?

JEROME GOLMARD: It seems short time. In fact, I almost didn't play after last year. It is a small season and what will be funny will be to play the other tournaments I didn't play the year before. I hope the sun will be there. I hope everybody will be happy to see good matches and I think the quality of the game will rise.

Q. You said that you had a physiotherapist with you. Was he the one who helped you to cure your need?


Q. Do you feel it necessary for him to follow you everywhere?

JEROME GOLMARD: Yes, because what was great is that he cured me in the first place. After four weeks I didn't hear about my knee anymore. I stayed six weeks because I wanted to continue. I felt I was improving and after that I trained for six weeks in the United States. I felt like I had wings; I was confident, and I told myself: Great, he cured me, I feel good. This opened up my mind. I thought if he could be with me all the time I would have really a lot of energy. I was discovering my body without pain when I was playing in matches in three sets or when I was playing two difficult days in a row. After I won that famous tournament in India regularly I went to see him afterwards and every time after I practiced with him I was feeling good. All the tensions I accumulated because of my work and my matches were disappearing with him. So I asked him if he was interested to work full-time with me. He was busy with other sports like soccer and he sees the mistakes made by athletes that need discipline. He said: Why not, because of the level I reached with my physical condition. And he said if I am with you, you will be able to raise your game. It was a challenge for him.

Q. Therefore, he is going to follow you everywhere?

JEROME GOLMARD: Yeah, we started in Estoril. I lost first round so we had time to work out and we changed my habits. It was not obvious, but I am sure that in the long-term it will be fruitful.

Q. What kind of habits?

JEROME GOLMARD: When it is cold he obliges me to start training with a track suit. He is changing my habits for warming up my muscles. Things like that which seem not important, but they change a lot of things in the end.

Q. The loss of last year seems far away?

JEROME GOLMARD: In fact, so many things happened. I concentrated on many things. I am not thinking about that too much. I rather have short-term objectives. When I was injured I was aiming at curing myself. After I was trying to win matches because I hadn't played for a while. These are small objectives in the short-term. Now I have to see things bigger. In the first moment I have to get used to my new physiotherapist. For me it is a new start and I hope it is a new career opening up to me.

Q. Today's match, you believe it was quite well?

JEROME GOLMARD: It is a match where I felt I had an advantage. As soon as the beginning of the match I saw that he was not very comfortable on clay and when I was playing the ball far from him, I saw that he wasn't sliding very well on clay so I didn't need to force myself too much to win my games. This helped me to be relaxed and it was my advantage because I served well the game after. It is good and building up my confidence by winning. So it is an extra match before playing a good player tomorrow -- a clay court specialist. Tomorrow's match will be a good test. It is good to come in with confidence and to be able to play relaxed. But it is still the Super 9 and since I didn't play well in the Grand Slams and in Super 9s I need to score points.

Q. You said you were serving well today. Did you have the impression you had lost your serve before?

JEROME GOLMARD: This comes back to the Davis Cup where I changed my rackets in order to hit harder and because of that I had a contrast in my back. I was not throwing my ball very well because my arm wasn't rising high enough. The toss was varied and my physiotherapist saw me serving and he said it wasn't going well. As soon as he gave me a massage and pulled the muscles of my back I was able to have -- to raise my arm higher thanks to the muscle which was not contracted anymore and I felt immediately better on my serve. I had that problem for a while before, but it is coming back fast. Today it went well. The important thing is that it was good weather today because the balls were faster and I didn't need to make so many efforts. If I had played yesterday I would have had a hard work and I would have maybe a sore back.

Q. What is your tactics for Costa tomorrow?

JEROME GOLMARD: Well, I believe I am going to bother him with my backhand. I am going to mix up my game a lot. He has a typical Spanish style with a big forehand and top spin. I am going to try to hit the ball early. I played him in Estoril last year. I lost in two sets. But I felt I could bother him. Tomorrow I will be fresh and ready for the fight and I hope I will be able to play a good match and mainly that I will be able to win.

Q. You have the same feeling than last year?

JEROME GOLMARD: The road is still very long. If I don't reach the semifinals I might become No. 150 therefore I have no pressure.

End of FastScripts….

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