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June 28, 2002

Taylor Dent

Wimbledon, England

Q. It was obviously pretty tough out there. You got fairly excited when you took a point off Wayne, slapped everyone's hands in the crowd. How difficult is he as a 31-year-old to play?

TAYLOR DENT: On this surface, you know, you just described how difficult it is. I mean, it's so tough to get points on his serve. I felt like if I got my racquet on the ball cleanly, I had a decent chance to just get the thing back. But 90% of the time, I was shanking them off into the crowd or getting aced. I think he had something like 35 aces for a match. That's ridiculous. So it's really tough. He's got an unbelievable serve.

Q. He said he has a joke with you and calls you Aussie Taylor, Aussie Dent. He said out there today it was like being in Australia, there were so many Australians in the crowd. How does that work out? Do you feel friendship towards the Australians?

TAYLOR DENT: They weren't very friendly to me today, that's for sure (laughter). But I don't really think about that too much. The crowd's going to be with me sometimes, and the crowd's going to be against me sometimes. So they were with Wayne today, which is totally -- you know, it's fine. It makes it fun. It makes it fun to play. It makes it fun to watch and be a part of. So it doesn't really bother me either way.

Q. How far do you think Wayne can go? He's looking at the quarterfinals possibly for the first time.

TAYLOR DENT: Do you know his draw?

Q. He's up against either Nalbandian or Bastl in the next.

TAYLOR DENT: Well, if I was a betting man, which I'm not, I'd put a few bucks on Wayne to win that match. If he serves that well, I'd like to see anybody break him. I mean, I had three breakpoints in the fourth set or third set, he hit aces on the line. You see the chalk all three times. I mean, he served really well. There's not much you can do. If he serves like that and backs it up with his volleys - he volleyed well - if he plays like that, I don't see him getting broken. He'd be tough to beat.

Q. Were you pleased with the way you played today?

TAYLOR DENT: I was. You know, I can criticize myself and say I wish I hit more returns in, but he was serving so good that it would be just kind of ridiculous to ask myself that. I didn't serve as well as I normally do, as well as I'd like to. I volleyed okay. I didn't get broken. If I play a match where I don't get broken, I think, "Good job, pretty good effort."

Q. Have you ever been in a match with just tiebreaks?

TAYLOR DENT: I've played in a match where I've won and I haven't broken the guy. I lost a break in the first set, so it was 6-4, 7-6, 7-6. But, no, that's my first where it's been all tiebreakers.

Q. How hard is it to lose a match like that, without being broken?

TAYLOR DENT: I think a loss is a loss. I mean, if I go out there, lose 0, 0, 0, four tiebreakers, it's frustrating both ways. But, you know, I can walk off the court and say he had to play that good to beat me, and that's a good feeling. So a loss is a loss, in my opinion.

Q. On the other hand, you did make it to the third round at Wimbledon.

TAYLOR DENT: For sure. Like I was saying earlier, I think this is a breakthrough tournament. I think I'm finally starting to play good match after good match after good match. And if I can do that, I think my chances of, you know, succeeding in this sport are very good. Before I would play a good match and then not so good. You know, I'd be real mixed. But I'm starting to put good performances in a line, and that's what the best players do.

Q. If you were playing him again, with the knowledge you have at this moment, would you change anything?

TAYLOR DENT: Yeah. I started off the match trying to hit the returns, you know, trying to hit them by him. I wouldn't do that again. I think I would just try and get my racquet on as many as I possibly could. I mean, I did that for the last two sets. It still didn't make much of a difference. But I felt like I was in the games more. So that's pretty much it.

Q. I think the Australian fans were just louder. I think you had just as many.

TAYLOR DENT: No, they were tough out there. They were tough.

Q. What are your plans for the rest of the summer?

TAYLOR DENT: For the rest of the summer, I've got one more tournament on grass in Newport, Rhode Island. I'm excited to play that. That should be fun. After that I play LA Open, Toronto, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, New York. Depending on where I get in and all that, schedule may change. Just trying to play as many tournaments as I can. Like I said, I think I'm on the right track finally. I think if I can just play a lot of matches, I'll have some decent results in there - hopefully.

End of FastScripts….

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