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September 3, 1994
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK
Q. Were you a little anxious in the last couple games there?
TODD MARTIN: I don't know if I would say anxious. I just didn't play it the way I
played the first three and a half sets. I was a little lucky to get through it, obviously,
but, you know, I did some good things when I needed to and especially in the first set,
but definitely finishing the match was a bit of a struggle; one, because he played much
better, and two, I think the fact that he didn't play great in the second. I let up a
little bit on my serve and stopped asserting myself so much on my serve, which I think
made his service games even easier. It took me at least three or four games before I won a
point on his serve in the third set and I still had a good chance to break, but you know,
he played pretty well the whole second, third, and fourth sets.
Q. Did you expect this match to be even a little tougher than it was because he is such
a good server?
TODD MARTIN: Well, three sets to one, that's pretty tough. And it is not far from going
five sets. About 4-2, I'm fighting off breakpoints and choking almost as bad as I did at
Wimbledon against Ferreira, and that's pretty close. It's closer than I wanted to be, but
-- and the first set I was lucky enough to hold, break him at 2-1. I think in the first --
or 3-2 -- maybe in the first, and after that, I sort of caught my stride a bit and played
well from there. But he's really tenacious and he plays actually a lot better from the
ground on his returns than I imagined he would. But, obviously, I was very impressed with
the way he served and volleyed.
Q. But, most of the match you kept him fighting from behind, stayed on top?
TODD MARTIN: I think -- I don't know, I just played well at the beginning couple of
sets -- beginning -- not at the beginning of the first, but beginning of the second, and
beginning of the fourth I broke him early and stuck to it and held my serve. I don't think
I got broken after the third game of the match. I'm not positive, but that's pretty good
tennis for me. Especially against a guy who is putting as much pressure on me as possible.
And coming in on all my second serve returns and even when I'm not going for much on the
second serve, I'm still throwing in a couple doublefaults which hurts at times.
Q. He said it didn't look like the groin was bothering you; what's your feeling?
TODD MARTIN: At the end of the third set I hit a pretty good backhand pass at 5-6, and
I needed every bit of that backhand pass. And the next time I moved to my backhand it was
a little bit tender. So I took it easy on it as much as I could, but after I started
stretching out at the changeovers, I think it loosened up again a little bit, and it felt
pretty good for the fourth, but obviously I was very nervous going into the fourth,
considering I didn't feel real great and I was just pretty happy to get that break early.
It just was too bad that nobody else was too happy about it.
Q. Any sense of satisfaction, you know, getting this far the first time at this or are
you used to doing much better and not being satisfied --
TODD MARTIN: Well, there's no satisfaction. It's exciting for me. I've had three very
tough matches in the third round before this year and I've played well, basically, in all
of them, and I just ran into better players than I was at the time, and it's just nice to,
you know, win one more match and hopefully, you know, I'll keep it going.
Q. Today a lot of the baseliners were very successful, Chang and Agassi, Bruguera and
others who stay back. In your match you stayed back -- are you the --
TODD MARTIN: See you, Rich--
Q. You were a 56, Rafter approach the match 105?
TODD MARTIN: I was only 56. Well, I hit a lot more aces. I didn't have to volley.
Q. I was wondering if the courts are playing a little slower --
TODD MARTIN: I think at night things speed up a little bit and if they don't, it seems
like they speed up because of the lights. I felt like I came to the net quite a bit. It's
very hard to come to the net against the guy who's serving and volleying first and second
serve, so he's able to come in on my serve when I'm hitting second serves, but I'm really
never able to come in on his serve. So that's the difference. I think obviously his
percentage of coming to the net is going to be higher than mine, but, you know, in
relative terms compared to our normal games, I came to the net quite a bit more than the
first two matches.
Q. Becker lost, Reneberg has been doing well-- even Sampras, when he won, has been
staying back more than he has in the past.
TODD MARTIN: The courts are very fair, I think, this year. I think there are a handful
of guys who play big regardless of whether they come to the net a lot or not. I think,
Pete's serve is still going through the court pretty well and if you hit a good volley,
then it is a good volley. If you don't hit a good volley, then you're going to pay for it
sometimes. And that's the way tennis should be, and that is what all the complaints were
about Wimbledon. But, it's hard to make a grass court slow. It's much easier to make a
hardcourt slow and they've come up with a pretty good composition of court and the ball,
Q. This might be the best test of tennis overall?
TODD MARTIN: I think it always is. If you take the atmosphere out of it, and some of
the noise and some of the hecklers, whatever, I think it's -- it's certainly the fairest
court, because you can serve and volley unlike on clay, but you can stay back. You can do
both. I think it gives everybody the most equal shot at winning the tournament.
Q. Todd, what your is your impression of the rule of preexisting injury; are you
allowed to have a trainer come on?
TODD MARTIN: I asked him if he was all right after the match and he said he was fine. I
certainly thought his serve lost a little bit for the second set, even a little bit of the
third, and things got tight and I guess he loosened up a little bit and really went after
it. If it is a preexisting injury, there's very little that a trainer can do to fix it.
And I certainly think that somebody deserves -- somebody to come out to you and look at
him and if they can make a physical improvement, it's better than somebody having to
Q. Was that shirt at all a distraction-- seriously?
TODD MARTIN: No, I think what people wear is their own business, is the company's own
Q. No, I'm --
TODD MARTIN: Yeah, and the only thing that would be distracting is if the shirt were as
shiny as the shorts -- no, just because the shorts do reflect a little bit. But they
really don't --
Q. Todd, you played so well in Australia, Wimbledon, beat Sampras on grass this year,
do you feel like you're close to --
TODD MARTIN: This is my tournament--
Q. How close do you feel to winning a tournament like this?
TODD MARTIN: I feel close. There's no reason I shouldn't be close again and I'm not
sure if there's a reason why I shouldn't win one of the these tournaments, but if God
doesn't have that in store for me, I'm not go took win one. If I work hard. Hopefully I
will accomplish that one of these days. I certainly won fret about it.
Q. I'd like to ask kind of the same question in a different form?
TODD MARTIN: Can I answer it the same way?
Q. It's a little bit different?
TODD MARTIN: Okay.
Q. Sampras at one, Chang at six Martin at nine, in terms of the Americans here and the
Americans on the computer, do you ever think about the gap or, you know, like whether
you're closing on them -- let me just stop there. Do you ever just think about the gap?
TODD MARTIN: The gap between our rankings?
Q. Yeah, that's not bad, being the third ranked American --
TODD MARTIN: To be perfectly honest, I could care less if I were third, first, or 100th
American, as long as I feel like I'm doing what I need to do to be the best tennis player
I can. And we all have different potential. Pete is probably playing close to as high
towards his potential as he ever has. And Michael has been able to, in the public and the
press's eye, seem to overcome his potential, sort of, carrying his size deficit, and I
don't know what you guys think about me, but I certainly don't think that I'm -- I've
reached my potential yet, and that's what the striving is for. It is not for a certain
number on the computer, it's not for a certain win over a good player. It's about being
the best you can be. Just like you do in any job or anything you do. And that's what makes
the whole thing exciting. If you try to make it overly important and you're ranked high
and that you beat certain players, then you put undue pressure on yourself. If you go out
on the court and say, hey, let's go out and play well and try to do what you've been
working on better, and keep on doing it better. Then, if you do, you should be pleased
with yourself. If you don't, you have something to go back to the practice courts and work
on. I'm not sure if a lot of guys think towards rankings or not, but I certainly think
that's one of the reasons I've improved as a tennis player and if you improve as a tennis
player, I'm pretty confident that you're ranking is going to go up and that gap is going
Q. Todd, are you staying in the City or are you staying on the Island?
TODD MARTIN: I'm staying in Lansing, Michigan, or Palm Coast, Florida. Whichever you
want to think.
End of FastScripts