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August 15, 2003

Mardy Fish


MODERATOR: Mardy advances to his first career Tennis Masters Series semifinal and will take on Rainer Schuettler. They played once before in Sydney this year and Schuettler won that, 7 -6, 6-4. All right. Questions?

Q. Did you feel as good as you looked out there?

MARDY FISH: I did, yes. You know, I felt very much in control of my serve games, and you know, that's very key for me to play well, you know, when I play well, you know, I'm holding easily and not having too many scares of getting broken. You know, and I did that well today and I served well and I volleyed really well, and I was just, you know, I just stayed as focused as I could on every serve game. You know, and I think that kind of ran over into the return games a little bit, and I kind of would be so focused in my serve games, and then I would kind of let up a little bit. And that game that I broke him, you know, I kind of just said to myself, okay, let's focus here and put as many returns in play as I can and see what happens.

Q. You've won a couple of tournaments, but does it feel different being in the semifinals at a tournament of this magnitude?

MARDY FISH: Sure. I mean the prize money is definitely the most that I've ever gotten. The points are definitely the most that I've ever gotten, so I mean in a tournament standpoint, no, it doesn't feel any different because, you know, like you said, I made finals and I've won challengers and things like that, and once you get out there and get into the flow, it's all the same. So you know, I might say something different if I win tomorrow and play a final of a Masters Series, but you know, I mean I don't know. I mean I just got off the court, so it hasn't really sunk in too much, so I can't really answer that correctly quite yet.

Q. You have just beaten two top 20 players in the world this week, though. Something's gotta be going right for you all the way around.

MARDY FISH: Sure. You know, but I've always said to myself and not to be -- not that I'm cocky, just confident, that you know, I think that on some days, and hopefully most days, I belong in the top 20. It's just a matter of time before, you know, the points come and the ranking spots go -- the numbers get a little bit lower, but you know, it's, again, tomorrow will be a learning experience, and every one of these matches in the later rounds of these big tournaments are learning experiences and will help me in the future.

Q. When you serve and volley like you did tonight, you did that in Del Ray and everything, you seem to do very well, yet a lot of matches you seem to stay back still. Is it that you don't feel comfortable in those situations or?

MARDY FISH: No. I mean I think that when I play well, I come to the net, and that's my game, and I have to play my game to play well and to win, and you know, I don't think that I could have beaten that guy from staying back. That's for sure. You know, because that's what he does best is he moves you around, and he, you know, he can hit any shot in the book from the baseline, and so I knew -- I knew what I had to do. And you know, luckily my game fit well to play someone like that because I know exactly what he's going to do. He's just going to rip from the back, and he's going to, you know, not do anything different from what I've seen him play, you know.

Q. Can you just talk a little bit about Rainer?

MARDY FISH: You know, I mean he's a tough cat. He doesn't give you anything, and you know, I played him in Australia, and we didn't lose our serves in the first set. And you know, breaker in these days is kind of a crap shoot, so you know, he won the breaker and broke me once in the second set, and you know, that's kind of what I've gotta -- you know, I've gotta be focused. I've gotta -- you know, if I can play as well as I did tonight, you know, not as well, but as focused, on my serve games and maybe hopefully carry that over into the return games, I should be okay.

End of FastScripts….

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