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April 20, 2006

Tim Henman

Andy Murray


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Tim, bad luck. What do you think about the new doubles format? I mean, do you enjoy it, or do you think it's --
TIM HENMAN: I do enjoy it, and I think it kind of suits the singles guys quite well because it certainly shortens the match up. It makes the opportunity for the match to change very quickly because if you win the first two points up 30-Love or, you know, you're down 30-Love, you feel like the game is going quickly. Obviously, with the third set just being a tiebreak, it appeals.
But I can certainly see how the doubles guys feel that it's a little bit more of a lottery.
But it was good fun out there. We played some good tennis.
Q. Andy, what was it like playing with Tim?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, it was good. I was a bit disappointed with his first volley (laughter).
But, no, it was great. I obviously learnt a lot playing with him. He's got some of the - well, probably the best volleys in the game just now. Mine aren't exactly the best, so I know I've got a lot to work on.
But it was good. We had good fun. We played well for the majority of the match. Just, you know, when you don't play a lot of doubles, we didn't play some of the big points as well as those guys, and that's why we lost.
Q. Andy, you took such a pelting at the net at times. Did you feel like reminding them who the British No. 1 was?
ANDY MURRAY: Not the British No. 1 at volleying (smiling).
But, yeah, I think they changed their tactics towards the start of the second set because, you know, we were having loads of chances in their games and they weren't getting too many chances on our service games.
You know, they started playing a lot at me. You know, I managed to get a few back. But when, you know, on the fourth, fifth one, my volleys just weren't quite solid enough and I missed a few too many.
Q. As the match unfolded, there were one or two of us watching who thought we'd like to see this team in a Davis Cup. Any chance, do you think, ever?
TIM HENMAN: I never said never but, you know, it's difficult. Obviously, you know, I've made a decision with Davis Cup and I said I feel comfortable with that. I don't think anyone, you know, could deny my commitment to the event over the previous decade. And, you know, if I did have a change of heart, then, you know, I'm sure that, you know, the dialogue I've had with Jeremy has been good and I'd let him know.
But, you know, as I said, at the moment, I don't feel like that's going to change, but I've always tried to stress that I'll never say "never."
But, yeah, certainly the doubles is always something I've enjoyed. It was great playing with Andy. I think doubles on clay, as well, is even more enjoyable. When you're playing on some of these really quick surfaces, it's very difficult to get into service games. You know, we could really use a lot of shots out there.
And I think at this time of the year on clay it is beneficial. Sometimes when you've played a lot of matches and you're playing well in the singles, then perhaps you don't need that extra exertion, but I think both of us benefit from the matches.
Q. What about other tournaments this year, any chance of doing it again?
TIM HENMAN: Yeah, I mean, I certainly, on the clay, wouldn't be against it because, as I said, I think it's important to get used to playing in the match conditions on clay.
So, you know, it's whether we'll get in. We were a little bit fortunate to get in here. I've got to try and get in singles first let alone doubles (smiling).
Q. If it was necessary for you to play qualifications in either Rome or Hamburg, would you?
TIM HENMAN: Probably not at the moment. But, again, yeah, I'm optimistic. I mean, you look at Agassi and Hewitt, maybe Johansson, Novak, Verkerk.
Q. Greg.
TIM HENMAN: Yeah, maybe Greg could do me a favor (smiling). I think there's a realistic opportunity that I'll get into Hamburg. You know, I'm very, very keen to play if I can.
But we'll just, you know, wait and see.
Q. Andy, how useful is just playing with Tim in a doubles for an hour and 15 minutes? How much do you pick up and learn from just chatting with him and playing points?
ANDY MURRAY: No, yeah, you obviously -- it's hard to say. I can learn things, you know, like concentration and realizing when there's a big point and knowing when you're 30-Love up to kind of keep the pressure on and not play a couple of loose points. Obviously, Tim has had a lot more experience than me and he knows when to kind of keep the pressure on.
But, you know, when I practice with him, you know, when we practice together, you know, you learn a lot. You can learn a lot there as well. We have good chats there. So, you know, Tim has obviously been a great help.
You know, thanks for helping (laughing).
Q. What about the interaction? Any good lines today?
TIM HENMAN: The spin of the racquet at the end. We both sort of had a try on, you know, the sudden death point. We couldn't really decide. So it was a spin of the racquet, heads or tails who won it, and he won it so he took it. But Zimonjic hit his best serve of the match on that point, so it was a tough one.
Q. What was it like to play against Zimonjic after winning Wimbledon two years ago?
TIM HENMAN: You can see his strong points. You can see where he also struggles. You know, he's a powerful player. He can serve big.
But, you know, I always felt that -- I think we both felt, we both talked about we get second shots, we were going to go at him at the net because we don't think he volleys as well as Fabrice.
But I think Andy hit the nail on the head. When you're playing in that format and the games are so short, when you do have a sudden death point, it's just an enormous point because it's both ways - it's game point, it's breakpoint. You win your fair share of those, I think you're going to be in a strong position for the match.
Q. Andy, can you say what your program will be in the next few weeks now.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I'm playing Barcelona next week and then I'm down to play Estoril. I'll see how it goes in Barcelona. I wouldn't mind doing -- getting some good practice and some training while I'm in Barcelona in the next few days before that starts. Then, obviously, I've got Rome and Hamburg and then I've got one week off before the French.
Q. Tim, do you enjoy being around Andy and, if possible, passing on some of your experience and know-how to him at what is a very important time in his career?
TIM HENMAN: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, I do enjoy that.
Q. What can you do?
TIM HENMAN: I think a lot of it, you know, when we're talking about his game and playing today, you know, it's not a question of -- it's not really a question of shots because it's obvious that he's got all the shots. But I think there are aspects mentally that it's something that you learn through experience. I think that's an aspect where I can pass on my experience and say, "Well, this is an area that we worked on and it took a certain amount of time to develop, but I think it's very, very important and it's something to focus on now."
You know, I remember Jeremy, you know, helped me when I was coming up. I was obviously a little bit older than Andy. But those types of things are important so you can have a focus on those key aspects. I think a lot of it is on the mental side of things.
Q. Any thoughts about a new coach?
ANDY MURRAY: Tim (laughing).
TIM HENMAN: I don't think he could afford me (smiling).
ANDY MURRAY: No, I have thought about it, but I've obviously not made any decisions. I don't want to rush into anything just now because it's such an important time of the year. I might take somebody to travel with me the next couple of weeks, but not a full-time coach. I might make a decision before Rome and Hamburg or maybe just before the French. I'm not sure yet.
Q. How important is Jean-Pierre to both of you? I mean, he's good company, a fun guy to be around. Has he kind of helped you, Andy, in this current circumstance? Is he good to have as a traveling companion, keep you on a nice, even keel?
ANDY MURRAY: He's very positive and he wants the best for you. Also not only that, he's great at his job. He keeps you in good shape. You know, he gives you very good treatment.
TIM HENMAN: Chiropractor by trade, not fitness trainer. I think he gets a bit insulted by that.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, and he's a doctor, too. He likes that.
TIM HENMAN: Yeah, we'll send you through all his --
Q. CV.
TIM HENMAN: Yeah, exactly.
ANDY MURRAY: No, but he's great to have around. He's a good help. He comes to all the Slams and the Masters Series.

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