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August 9, 2006

Roger Federer


THE MODERATOR: Questions for Roger.

Q. What did you think about the game today?
ROGER FEDERER: Similar at yesterday: good. I think I played a little bit more aggressive. I again, you know, had very, very good patches where I played very good tennis.
I was really pleased really the way I played because he's a tough player. I haven't played him in a while. He's a veteran. He knows how to play. He reads the game very well and he's quick, so I had to play a good match today.

Q. There have been comparisons made between you and Tiger Woods at times. What do you make of those kind of comparisons? Are there athletes in other sports that you look up to, that you look at and say I would like to have the same status in my sports that they have in theirs?
ROGER FEDERER: I think being at the Laureus awards where the best athletes all come together, are all up for nominees, it's always obviously nice to come through like I did the last two years. As soon as you not only have one great season, but back them up season after season, you get compared outside of the sport with other sports. For this reason I'm very happy to hear that people compare me to Tiger and other people, and the same way around.
I enjoy watching many sports. I have the great pleasure all the time of meeting all these other great athletes.

Q. Is it tough for you to live up to your own standards? What is that like to know you have to be the best every single day?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I mean, you get used to it after a while, you know, having the pressure from the media or the fans, the expectations and everything.
But losing is a normal thing, too. You can't just win, tennis especially, because a lot has to do also with the day form. Sometimes you run into another guy who's playing excellent tennis, then it's also important to understand that today you were not better than your opponent.
In the last few years, I've been able to eliminate many matches where maybe I would have lost in the past because of mental fatigue, physically tired. That hardly ever happens any more these days because my preparation is so much better, my belief, my understanding for the game has improved so much that now actually I've kind -- for me, I've passed all the tests. It's just now for me really to enjoy the tour out there, try to win as many matches because that's what makes me most happy.

Q. There was a time when Hewitt was the guy chasing you. There was a time when it was Roddick. Now it's Nadal. When you see what's happened to Roddick or Hewitt, do you realize how difficult or how improbable it is that you're doing what you're doing?
ROGER FEDERER: I mean, I obviously know how difficult it is. I don't break many racquets for nothing. I know that what I'm doing is not the usual thing, only losing four, maybe a maximum 10 to 15 matches a year. That's not a whole lot. On top of that, I've been winning 11 titles a year the last two. This year again I have six. All the Grand Slams I've been able to win. I'm very well aware what I'm doing.
It's of course a pity to see other players kind of fading away, coming back, not being able to play consistent. I think that leaves the opportunity to other players, like, for instance, a Nadal, Ljubicic, Nalbandian, all these guys have opportunities now to come up really high in the rankings, like Blake. That gives him great opportunities. For this reason you also have many more stories now in the game.

Q. When someone like Andy is seemingly getting close to you, that seems to be the rivalry people were looking for, you beat him so handily, do you think for them how hard it is, for an Andy Roddick, Lleyton Hewitt, to take a shot at you?
ROGER FEDERER: I mean, rivalries is obviously nice if you have it. To be able to have a rivalry, usually you're not going to have against the No. 50th player in the world. You're going to have that against another top three or top five guy usually.
The thing about that, it's not so easy to make the finals every week, like what Nadal and myself have been able to do over the last one and a half years. All of a sudden he's only playing against myself, it's not true. You first have to get there to the finals to get it going.
We didn't play that a whole lot, me and Andy. I played Lleyton Hewitt many more times. I almost played Andre more than I played Andy. There was not that big of a rivalry after all except the three Wimbledons in a row when we played each other the semis and then two finals.
Look, I enjoy the guys like the greats who have all been No. 1 like Lleyton Hewitt who is there for a long time. I like still now. I fancy their chances to coming back to the very top. It just seems like they need just a little bit more time right now.

Q. You were talking about breaking records. Is there one record that you want badly to break in your career, one that's most valuable for you?
ROGER FEDERER: I mean, I guess the one with the most Grand Slams. If you could choose, that is probably the one you would want to beat because that's where you probably are measured up at the end of your career.
Of course, it would be nice to be the longest No. 1 in the world or the most titles. I think one of those three is definitely very special.

End of FastScripts...

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