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September 1, 1995

Byron Black


Q. Is that the longest last game of your career, that one?

BYRON BLACK: Yeah, nerve-racking one, too. Had a lot of chances in that last game there, and when he had the breakpoints, I would play a little more aggressively at one point and when I had the matchpoints; hold back a little bit; he came up with some good shots because he had nothing to lose at that stage, but I didn't want to try to break to win the set.

Q. Vaguely remember it being a day where you had a big win and Nick Price won a big golf tournament?

BYRON BLACK: Is that right?

Q. No?

BYRON BLACK: You could be right. I am not sure. It feels good when Zimbabwe athletes do well because there are not so many of us.

Q. You don't remember that?

BYRON BLACK: You could be right. I don't remember it though.

Q. Did you feel this coming, Byron?

BYRON BLACK: I have been feeling well this week. Been hitting the ball well. Last week I took a week off and just really trying to work my groundstrokes. I have played Thomas a few times now, played him four times. He beat me here two years ago in the third round, same court, actually, and I beat him last year in Washington and this year in Nottingham on grass, so I like the way we match up. He has got good ground strokes. We sort of battle it out from the back. I like the courts here because it doesn't bounce up to high. With my two hands, I can take it on the rise and sort of dictate.

Q. With his flat strokes like that, when he is missing long, he is at a disadvantage because he is really not used to -- he doesn't really have easy adjustment to make --

BYRON BLACK: Well, he was -- I think he was finding it frustrating playing against me because he would serve some big serves; I would get them back. I would try and get into the points and, you know, in the third set he just started hitting a second -- first and second serve as hard as he could, and, you know, then he just went for it. And I couldn't break him in the third. But in the fourth, I really tried to focus and get the momentum back on my side, and I did that. Tried to hang in there on his serve and tried to guts out mine.

Q. Have you phoned home yet?

BYRON BLACK: No, I'd like to tell my dad. Have to get him to a Grand Slam one of these days. Told me when my brother and my sister are in the main draw he will come over. It is tough to get him off the farm.

Q. Do you know how many wins you have had over top ten players?

BYRON BLACK: I think this is the first. I beat Krajicek when he was top 20; Lendl when he was 13 or 14. Is Thomas No. 10 right now?

Q. 9th.

BYRON BLACK: I think this is my first top 10 win.

Q. How old are you?


Q. Where are you based now? Where are you doing your training?

BYRON BLACK: I just got a place in London so I am based out of London now. I love to get home to Zimbabwe. Obviously, it is pretty far, so I have got a place in London now. It is closer to Zimbabwe and to the states and it is obviously very close to Europe.

Q. Which of the centers are you using to train, Byron?

BYRON BLACK: I just actually got it this year, you know, I have been sort of travelling out of my case the last four years. That is pretty rough, so I am pretty excited to get a place now and I haven't really figured that out yet. I haven't been there too much, so...

Q. You don't have a full-time travelling coach, right?

BYRON BLACK: Jacques Hervet, from the ITF.

Q. But he is not with you all the time?

BYRON BLACK: Not all the time, but most of the Grand Slams he is with me. All the Grand Slams and some of the other tournaments also. He has been working with me for the last three years now.

Q. Is it nice to have Wayne around on occasion?

BYRON BLACK: Yeah, it is great. He is also working with Jacques and he is coming along. He is almost top 100 doubles and getting singles up there too.

Q. Make it nicer for you on the road to see him?

BYRON BLACK: Sure, it is nice to have close friend like your brother around, it helps. It can get lonely out there sometimes. It is nice to have him around.

End of FastScripts...

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