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August 30, 2006

Amelie Mauresmo

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Amélie.

Q. Can you talk about yesterday.
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Yeah, yeah, was a little bit of a struggle yesterday, you know, with conditions. In that second set, I don't know, I just...

Q. Have you ever been happier to see rain?

Q. Have you ever been happier to see rain at all?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Well, yeah, I mean, I just even if I was gonna lose the second set, I hope I would have, you know made myself right in the third.
But it didn't happen, and not even today was not for sure I was gonna be able to come back in that second set. You know, 5 2, it's not so easy.

Q. Dr. Parra, has he been effective for you?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Well, I don't know. It's I don't know. I know that it's tough to say, in fact, because it's really something not concrete can you say that?

Q. How difficult was yesterday? I know they kept you and even tried to get you back out in the evening. Terribly, terribly long day.
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Yeah, it is. I mean, 12 hours on site. Really warm up, you know, go, no, we don't go, so we go back and we warm up again.
Yeah, it's one of these those days that are pretty difficult to handle. It was good that today, you know, it just rained early this morning and then was okay because, you know, to have couple days or three days like this in a row, it's probably like it happened I think two years ago, it would have been, yeah, difficult.

Q. Would you have preferred to see them make more of a concrete decision earlier in the day considering the weather forecast was so dreary for the evening and for the night?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Well, apparently they thought that they had a chance to play us, to finish the match somewhere around 8:00, which was close to be, but couldn't happen.
You know, I think they kept Blake and Monaco for a few hours also after us. I guess they have to do their best to make sure that some tennis is on.
It's tough for us to, you know, to stay in the locker or in the player lounge or player restaurant and really doing nothing. Do we eat? Do we, you know, wait? What do we do? It's not a good day for anybody.

Q. Isn't that a part of talent, being able to keep yourself calm in situations like that?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Yeah, I mean, I don't know.

Q. I think of Sampras at Wimbledon through all the rain delays. Never bothered him.
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: It's probably a little bit of experience. It's a little bit of trying to not to lose too much energy by waiting and warm up. You know, it's tough.
But, yeah, I'm trying to do my best. I don't know if it's being talented or not, but just try to do my best.

Q. You had all night to think about where you were in this match. You're behind 5 2 in the second set.
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I didn't dream about it, don't worry, if that's the question (smiling).

Q. Do you try to dismiss something like that from your mind?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: No, I just I just I could live with it, you know. I could really spend the evening and, you know, have the treatment and go to dinner and really sleep very well on this knowing that nothing, you know that maybe I was gonna be a set all after one or two games today, but then, you know, another story will start for the third set. So it was okay.

Q. Are you proud of the way you were able to respond today?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Yeah. I mean, yes. It's never easy, I mean. And she could have even, you know, closed the set at 5 3 to make it 6 3. So, you know, it's not easy. She serves pretty well. Yesterday she was hitting, I think, unbelievable shots at some times. I really didn't know. I was hoping I could break her on her first service game, but, you know, it was not so easy.

Q. She missed two volleys in that game.
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Yeah, that's why I say she could have closed it probably 6 3.

Q. Did you make a tactical change today as opposed to yesterday, or did you figure, I'll play my game and she can't possibly be as good as she was?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: No, that's not what I thought. I just thought yesterday, and especially in the second set, I was way too much behind my baseline, and so she was able to take control and really hit some great shots.
So, you know, I just today didn't want to let that happen again, even try to be a little bit more aggressive, try to be also more effective on my service games because, you know, that second part of yesterday was not so good. So try to adjust a few things here and there, and worked better today.

Q. We've seen the swift rise of the Russians, but they have some tennis tradition in that country. Can you remember a country like China that has sort of popped out of nowhere with a lot of top players?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: No, you talked about Russia, and that's about it. I think China is really starting to since few years already. But with the Olympics coming up in couple years, I think they really want to focus on the sports, and in all sports. I think we see Chinese athletes in very different sport. And they want to, you know, in their home Olympics, they want to do well, and they do everything they can to do that. You can feel it. They're really responding very well to I guess the government and all these things that are put together in their home.

Q. Do you think a country can manufacture players like that?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Well, it seems to be a little bit the case for the Chinese, even though I'm not quite sure about the structure they all have, you know? Are they all with kind of a federation, or are they in private structures? I'm not quite sure about that.

Q. If you could characterize them as a group, how would you characterize them?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: They're really a group. I think they're really getting along very well.

Q. Their style as players?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: They're working hard. You can see they're working very hard. They're very well organized in terms of recuperation. They're traveling with physios, with physical trainers and everything.
In terms of really style of play, I think it's really they like to be really effective from the baseline. Most of them are hitting pretty flat on both sides. That's what they like to do.

Q. As you know, Sony Ericsson has bought into the Key Biscayne tournament.
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I learned that yesterday.

Q. Aside from the money that they've invested in women's tennis, what things have they done in terms of innovations that you think are particularly important for women's tennis?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I think they want, not only for women's tennis, but they want to really innovate on many technological things. They want to be able for people to watch a tennis match on the phone. They're really trying to push, you know, not really knowing how to do it yet, but really trying to push for this to happen and make sure that the fans are closer to us. That's really their message, is what they've told us in the last few couple years, because they're here for couple years now.
And also, what you see, they pushed a lot for the electronic review, like the challenge system, how you call it. They pushed also for the WTA to try to innovate. We've seen coaches on the court. They were really in favor of that. You know, it's really mixed thinking about this new thing in tennis, but I think they're trying to push for the tennis to be much more entertaining for people globally.

Q. So they've been involved in more than just putting money into the game?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: Than just signing the check, yes. I think so.

Q. I know you received tremendous acclaim at home, everywhere, for winning Wimbledon. Did that Wimbledon victory of yours resurrect the name of Lenglen?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: (Smiling). Yeah, a lot of people in France talked to me about Suzanne Lenglen, yeah.

Q. Was there a lot of publicity about it, though?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I think so. I mean, talk about it to maybe your colleagues, your French colleagues.
But, yeah, a lot, because she was the last French woman to win it. So, obviously, they all mentioned that it was probably 80 or 81 years since another French done it, so it was funny.

Q. Since last year's Open, obviously, you've had these great results and it's been such a breakthrough for you. Do you come into this Open with a completely different attitude from last year? Are you freer? Do you feel more pressure? Mentally, how are you feeling?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I don't feel more pressure at all. I think really what I've achieved since US Open last year has really gave me the right to, you know, to lose actually, and to be more relaxed and to have less pressure on me, when before I was probably inside of me telling me, Am I gonna be able to win one? Am I gonna do it? Am I gonna end my career without a Grand Slam title? All these things probably were in my mind.
Now it's a big relief to think that it's not there anymore. That's something that's been going on for a few months now.

Q. Would you have handled last night differently, you know, if you weren't relaxed?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I'm not I don't think so, because I think I've played many Wimbledons yeah, now, and I'm kind of used to having to wait. So I'm not sure about that.

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