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September 3, 2006

Roger Federer

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You kind of had some more fun moments, overhead smash. Nice to have some moments like that in a Slam match?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I mean, I think it was a great atmosphere out on Armstrong. I've had some great matches out there, you know, playing against Ferrero years ago, like six years ago. Other ones, too. The crowd's much closer to you. There's less space behind you. They're much more into it. So it's good for a change again to play on that court. You know, that good rallies that turn up, that's usual. But overhead smashes and stuff is always good fun, yeah.

Q. Talk about being down 2 3 and breakpoint way, way early in the match in the first set. Were you aware of, Okay, I'm gonna what was going through your mind at that point, nothing?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I guess, just try to serve well and try not to get behind. If you do, it's okay. Then try to fight back, you know.
You're not overpositive or anything, you're just normal situation. You try to deal with it. I think I did well today. I didn't concede a break. I think that was key to the match, especially in the first two sets.

Q. Can you talk about your form going into the second week. You're playing extremely well. Are you personally happy with it?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, no, I'm very happy. Not losing a set the first three rounds, that's always awesome, you know. From now on, you try to keep it up. Of course the rounds are getting tougher. Even though I don't know my opponent very much in the next round, I've seen him play a little bit today, obviously, you know. And then also that Kiefer match at the French Open where he played, you know, five sets. So I know a little bit about him.
But the rounds are definitely getting tougher. Now either you play the guy with more experience, a guy with momentum, something is getting tougher. I have to be ready for it.

Q. Are you one of those people that likes a tough first week match or are you satisfied with blowing through them?
ROGER FEDERER: I prefer the second part (smiling).

Q. Did you get to soak up the atmosphere of Agassi's farewell match? Getting to play so late, other guys were going on after that match or playing during it.
ROGER FEDERER: I was in the city. I saw the first set. I came back just when he was sitting in the press conference. I basically missed the end, unfortunately, you know. But the other matches, I've seen them all. This time around I had to go for lunch and stuff. I decided to go out of the room, you know. I was hoping by the time I come back he's in the fifth set and everything.
But, yeah, I mean, in a way it's a pity, you know. But in a way also, expected, you know, that after all these tough matches, it's gonna catch up with him. I don't think the result matters too much in the end. It's his fantastic career. We all dream about a career like he had.

Q. To achieve such a level as yours, to be a great formation behind you, tell me, do your coaches, when you were a kid, told you to be merciless or to look for perfection? There's no way that you can just let a guy just go away with it, you know.
ROGER FEDERER: I had different type of coaches, you know, growing up, of course, with different temper. I think it's for me anyway it worked out good because I had very nice coaches early on, then I had a tougher coach from 14 years old till 16. This was a time when I really improved a lot. I was growing. I was getting stronger. I started to understand, you know, what tennis is all about, you know, how it works.
From 16 years old, you know, I had a coach which was very quiet. Gave me advice on technique and tactics. I think that was also key at that stage. Then later on I was with Lundgren who knew the game from playing himself, you know, out on the tour.
I think I've always had pretty much the coaches at the right time. I think now with Tony Roche, I can just really tune up all the little things. That's key right now. Try to get overall more and more solid. I think I've been very lucky with the coaches, coaching situation over the years.

Q. Is there one thing above all that you admire about Andre and his career?
ROGER FEDERER: Uhm, I guess winning the four Slams is what stands out the most, and the length of the career, you know. He played through three generations. You know, his foundation, what he's been able to do in a very short time. I think it's been maybe eight or nine years since he has it, and he's been able to raise an incredible amount of money and, you know, help kids and everything. These are for me the things that stand out most.

Q. You mentioned your coaches. You had Peter, won Grand Slams. You went without a coach, won Grand Slams. You're with Tony now, won Grand Slams. Has it mattered, having a coach or not? Why at those particular points did you decide to go with or without a coach?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I guess things like this happen naturally, you know. You can't plan an entire career. There's always things like that that happen, you know. Fortunately or unfortunately, you know, I lost, you know, a Davis Cup captain really through an accident. Then, you know, it was just time to kind of move on with Lundgren, you know. After that, I didn't have anybody really in mind, you know. I just knew that the time came for us to stop.
Look, I don't want to rush into a coaching decision, you know. I want to take my time. I'm not in the mood to go three months with a coach and then move on. I decided to wait. I was quite lucky actually to get Tony Roche in the end, which was good for me. I'm happy to be working with him, you know, for the second year running. He confirmed that he's gonna do it, you know, next year as well, which is great.
I'm surprised he still does it, you know, because he's getting older and older and he's done it so often with Lendl and Rafter. It's a great pleasure to work with him.

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