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July 3, 2006

Dmitry Tursunov


THE MODERATOR: Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. Questions, please.

Q. Jarkko Nieminen wasn't sure what happened there at the beginning of the last game of the match. Can you shed some light on what happened as far as the point penalty goes.
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Uhm, I had a point penalty.

Q. You did.
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Yes. So instead of 0-0 or Love-Love, it was 15-Love.

Q. I know you did, but what did it result from?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: I'm not quite sure myself, but what the referee said is when I lost my serve and I hit the ball and it hit the bottom of the chair, he said that I was -- I hit the ball at him, so that's why he gave me a point penalty.

Q. He defended his position saying that a tennis pro knows exactly where he's hitting it, and where else would he be hitting it. What would your response to that be?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Well, my response would be that the professional umpire would never make mistakes. So, I guess he says that -- if all of us make mistakes, then if hitting at him, I would have hit him and I wouldn't have been hitting the bottom of the chair.

Q. What did you say to him at the end of the match when you shook his hand?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Good match. I don't remember, to be honest. It probably wants something positive, though, I'll tell you that.

Q. You seemed to sort of yank his hand a little bit. Do you think there will be consequences? Did I misread that situation?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: I'm sure I'll be fined for, I don't know, for anything that they can possibly fine me for. But I think the only frustrating thing is that, you know, if I had two, you know, I don't know, two things that I got penalties for and they're gonna fine me for two things. If he made 16 mistakes during the match, he's gonna go away and get the same prize money for his job, and he's gonna -- he's not gonna be punished for anything. That's the only frustrating thing about it.
But, yeah, I will be fined, I'm sure.

Q. After you were broken at that point, you had the ball, you seemed to hesitate for a moment before you hit the ball. Do you recall that?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Yeah, I mean, you know, you have a choice of where you want to hit it. I mean, if you're gonna choose to be angry, I mean, you have a chance of hitting it in the net and hit a girl that's running by, then maybe missing the net, hitting an umpire in the back. You know, hitting it in the crowd is obviously a point penalty as well.
If you hit it in the only direction -- you got to pick a direction where you're gonna hit the ball because you're gonna be fined for hitting anything on a court. Tim Henman got, you know, defaulted here, and there has been cases where people get defaulted for hitting it behind them, not even looking where they hit and hitting somebody.
Hitting the bottom of the chair seemed like the only viable solution, but apparently I was aiming at him when I did that.

Q. Have you ever had an incident with Murphy before?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Actually, yeah. I mean, for the last three matches that he's been -- the last three matches where he was on the chair during my matches, you know, I've always had problems with him. He's -- I mean, I'm not gonna go into details, but I think he's a very bad referee.

Q. Something bad enough, I'm not just talking about a line call or an overrule that you disagreed with, something like that?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: No, I mean, I don't know. Maybe it's something personal now because I've always argued with him during my matches. But I think he's terrible. I mean, he never makes an overrule. Then he, you know, as you saw, gives me a point penalty at 8-7. Four hours on the court doesn't seem to be a good enough reason for him to be more lenient.
You know, if the guy's an idiot, the guy's an idiot. I'm gonna let him know that I feel that.

Q. He said that he's been officiating for many years and he knew the job he was doing and that he didn't overstep in terms of that point of the match deep in the fifth. What are your thoughts on that?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: Well, just because he's been doing it for many years doesn't mean that he's been doing a good job, does it? I mean, I don't know, to bring up -- to bring an example, but -- I don't know.
I mean, I guess with politicians, you could disagree with politicians, and they can be serving 16 terms or whatever. Saddam Hussein has been in Iraq for a while, but not too many people agree with his point of view. I guess a person can be doing a bad job for many years and still get away with it.

Q. Now that you stepped away from the heat of the battle, if you could do it again, would you try and just hold on to the ball and not bash it anywhere or just do the same thing?
DMITRY TURSUNOV: I mean, if I'm hitting it in that direction and, you know, seven feet away from me, I really don't see why you would say that I'm hitting the ball at you, especially when you say the tennis pro is very good with his aim and knows where he's hitting.
If I was hitting it at him, I would have hit it at him. So from that point of view, no, I wouldn't hit it anywhere else. Where else am I gonna hit it? Umpire in the back? Umpire in the front? I don't know how many people, but at least 15 people on the court, I got to hit it somewhere, right?
Hitting it out of the stands is obviously out of the question because that's a definite point penalty. Unless I can giggle it off, there's really not much you can do. Throw a racquet, same thing, he can say I was throwing a racquet at him.

End of FastScripts...

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