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July 1, 2006

Dmitry Tursunov


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. After this odyssey was over, you gave a wave of the racquet to the crowd. Were you just too tired to go into too much emotion?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: No, I was thinking of doing a cartwheel, but that didn't seem like the right place to do it (smiling).
I don't know if you remember, but I don't celebrate that much. Even when I won that coveted title in Sunrise, I didn't, yeah, celebrate too much.
So, you know, the waving a racquet is as much as I can do just at any point.

Q. But you are happy?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Yeah, yeah. I mean, definitely happier than if I had lost that match.

Q. You've had some really big wins. How does this compare to Henman, Gasquet, all that? How does this compare?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Well, you know, if I want to move up in my rankings and if I want to win some titles, I have to start winning those matches. You know, at this point I didn't have that many big wins, but I'm trying to change that because the more I -- you know, the further I go in the draw, the more people, more top 10 players I'm gonna have to play.
So, you know, I don't want to say that it's becoming ordinary, because it's not, you know. It's always nice to win against a top 10 player. But, you know, if I do move up in the rankings, I am becoming one of these people, so I have to win more of those matches. It's not like winning a title, you know, to me.

Q. What is your emotional state after you're down two sets?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Uhm, I mean, I'm definitely not smiling. But, you know, you're playing out of five sets, so...
I was up two sets against Nalbandian at the French Open and he didn't seem to care too much. So, you know, you have to kind of try to grab on to anything you can, and hopefully you can win the match.

Q. Were you flashing on the Nalbandian match?

Q. During the match today, were you flashing back?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Oh, flashbacks, no, no. I mean, I don't think about it too much. All I was thinking is that, you know, You still got one set to go so there is a possibility of turning things around. I mean, it's definitely not a good place to be. You never want to go that far down.
But, you know, I wasn't playing too great in the second set. I've had some really bad mistakes in the first to give the first set away. I was just trying to kind of pick my level up a little bit. I think I did it.

Q. Why do you feel comfortable on grass? What in your game can explain that?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: You know, I wouldn't say I feel comfortable on it, but I seem to do well on it. I think that, uhm, I'm able to hit maybe more winners because of the surface allows you to do that. That's a comfortable place for me, is when I can hit a winner off a first or second shot.
So, you know, I don't say -- I wouldn't say that I'm a natural grass court player, but it seems like I'm doing well on it. So I kind of came to like it, I like to play on it, because I have good results.
But I still feel more comfortable on hard than on grass courts.

Q. Next up may be a guy that's even faster than you are, Jarkko Nieminen. Second match with him. Different in this one?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Yeah, I mean, different surface, outdoors, you know. Grand Slam. I played him in Bangkok, so indoors. So a lot of things are different. You know, I'm also -- I would say that I'm a different player right now.
I think I've got as good of a chance as he does, so hopefully I can win that. But I think, you know, again, having those chances and capitalizing on them is a whole different story.

Q. You have a good record with lefties?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: I don't keep records, sorry (smiling).

Q. Some players don't step up exactly at Grand Slam tournaments on the biggest stages, but you've done quite well and have had some good wins. Can you talk about that. Do you really focus on that? Just talk about it.
DMITRY TURSUNOV: No. I mean, obviously, you realize that it's more important tournament and also the matches are a little bit longer so you can get your rhythm going. Maybe that has something to do with it.
A lot of players seem to work on their schedule so that they peak during Grand Slams. I wouldn't say that I particularly do that, but, uhm, I think that just because the matches are a little bit longer, I mean, you do feel that this is a little bit more special and it's a bigger stage. You seem like you concentrate a little bit more than at a regular tournament.
But, you know, if you just -- it's also not the best way of approaching the game because if -- you only have four Grand Slams. If you had one every week, then it would be good that you could peak every single week. But you only have four, so maybe, you know, that's why they also feel special. I don't know.

Q. Could you just go into a little bit more detail how the match turned around. You touched on that briefly, but could you explain.

Q. Just how did you orchestrate the comeback?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Well, I think that the first set I had a couple opportunities early on and I didn't capitalize on them. Then a really bad game at 5-6 in the first set. So realistically I should have been in a tiebreak, if you could just take that game back.
But, you know, the good thing about it is that I was in control of my service games as much as he was on his, even probably more so. So the good thing about that set was that he didn't wipe me off the court, and I was the one that kind of handed him that set.
The second one, also similar story. I didn't serve well. Probably made maybe only one or two first serves the entire set - at least it felt like it.
So also, you know, he didn't really have much to do with me losing those two -- I lost those first two sets instead of him really winning it. So that was really the only positive thing out of those two lost sets.
Then third one, you know, I started returning a little bit better. And his serve, you know, changed maybe a little bit my tactic on his serve. That seemed to pay off a little bit.
So, you know, once I got that third set, and the fourth set I felt like I was in command most of the time and really, again, lost my serve kind of, you know, by him hitting three good shots. So there's not much I could have done. But, you know, just try to get back, and kind of that's what I did.
Tiebreak is really a coin toss.

Q. What did you improve during the last month, or what did you learn during the last month about yourself as a player?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Uhm, well, I wouldn't say I magically came to some realization, but I think just, you know, I trust myself in the longer matches more now, you know. I know that I can stay in them physically. I can win those matches. Maybe not playing well, but just really kind of -- I wouldn't say "outgrind," but because of my - what's that called? form - because of my fitness, maybe I can win those matches a lot of times not playing well.
So that changes a little bit your attitude and your tactics because you don't get as upset if you don't play well. You know that there's still a backup plan, and you can still, uhm, like in this match today, maybe lose two sets but still have a chance to get back in. And the longer you play, the more chances you have. So that's one thing.
And, you know, just kind of my whole game has been a little bit more stable than in the past, you know. I've had enough matches under my belt for a long period of time, so I think I play well, you know, just really because of that better than because of anything else.

Q. If I could change gears quite a bit, so many athletes really for decades have come from Russia to live in the United States. What's the most striking difference between those two cultures?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Well, uhm, I mean, there's obviously a lot of them. It's a different culture, different language. Mentality is slightly different. Different values. Because, you know, depends I guess on the level of living for people. So, you know, maybe in Russia people appreciate certain things more than in the United States because, you know, in America every family has one or two cars at least, so they don't really treat their cars like it's, you know, something special, like a special possession. In Russia, until fairly recently, not very many people could afford cars. So, you know, just a lot of things like that are different.
I don't know what else. Are you looking for tennis specifics or just anything?

Q. I was just asking a general question in terms of an athlete.
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Yeah, that's kind of like basically a general answer that I can give you. A lot of things are different. But, you know, I think I'm -- in my case, I'm kind of able to understand maybe both. Maybe not fully, but I can understand both of them.

Q. You take pretty good care of your car?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Yes, I do. It's always sitting in the shop, unfortunately. But, yeah. The more money I make, the better care it gets.

End of FastScripts...

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