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August 31, 2007

Mardy Fish


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Looked like you were pretty much in control there in the fifth set, then it kind of got away from you.
MARDY FISH: Yeah, uhm, you know, I felt like that. You know, I felt like the momentum from the fourth carried into the fifth.
You know, there's one side out there that was unbelievably easier to play on than the other. You know, for a while there in the beginning it was the sun and the wind against you on that side.
The other side was no sun and wind with you, just free swinging. That was the side that I was trying to get myself to there, you know, at the 4-2 game. I just wanted to get to that side. I wanted to get back over there.
You know, I mean credit to him. He stepped up his game. But, I mean, I froze. Against top 10 players, top eight players in the world, you just can't freeze like that.

Q. Does this match typify what your career has been about, playing well on the court but ultimately not prevailing in this type of situation?
MARDY FISH: I mean, I don't think so. But if you do... I mean, you want me to say, yeah, that's what my career is like? My career is like getting there really close and then coming up short? I'm only 25 years old.

Q. When you say you froze, what do you mean?
MARDY FISH: I think a lot had to do with nerves. You know, the thought of, you know, being in the third round, having a favorable draw after Robredo didn't cross my mind, but, you know, obviously you get a little tired.
I mean, he runs down everything. That 3-1 game was a tough game, even though I held, hit two unbelievable running passing shots. You know, I felt like I was in control of my serve games the entire time. You know, if I made first serves I won the game almost every time.
Just felt like if I could, you know, get back to that good side and hold serve at that 4-2 game, you know, that was basically my match game, if you will.

Q. Even the last game it seemed like you were pushing yourself to swing out. You'd hit a couple good forehands. Came in and missed the two easy backhand volleys.
MARDY FISH: Even though I lost serve in the 4-2 game, I'm still on the good side at 4-3. Last time he was over there, you know, I broke him at 15. I was still looking forward to being up in the set, playing on that side.
You know, just didn't come through with it.

Q. How does your mind switch out? You did such a good job of making it through the breaker. Playing well in the fifth. All of a sudden that Mardy Fish goes away.
MARDY FISH: You know, I wish I knew, to be honest. You know, just coming off the court and thinking about it a little bit, you know, I mean, the best thing I can give us is that I got tight.
That was a new situation for me. I played big matches before, but lately having played so well last week, played well here, I mean, I still can come out of the match losing 6-4 in the fifth to a guy that's a top seed.
You have to play pretty well to get that far. I guess there's a little bit of positive you can take out of losing a match like that.
But, you know, I got tight, I guess, is the only thing I can give you.

Q. What kind of factor was the crowd?
MARDY FISH: They were great. I mean, they helped me through that fourth set. There were no breaks there at all. You know, I was really looking forward to getting in that fifth set, using the momentum, using the crowd. They were huge.
You know, it was almost like five minutes -- it feels like five minutes ago I was up 4-1 in the fifth and now I'm in here losing 6-4.

Q. James kept us up pretty late last night. Did he keep you up?
MARDY FISH: No. I went to sleep at 10:00 I've seen James play a bit.

Q. It was a special match.
MARDY FISH: I didn't speak to him. He was sleeping in. He got the monkey off his back. It's nice.

Q. Do you feel like the experience of being in a match like that would be the best way to avoid that tightness the next time you're in it?
MARDY FISH: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, that only helps. I haven't played too many matches on Arthur Ashe. You know, the past few years coming in here I've lost -- not last year, but the years past -- last year I lost to Djokovic in the second round. Years past, seems like I always get through the first round fine and then I run into a little bit of trouble.
I lost to guys I should have beaten, you know, in those years. This was a great opportunity for me to show everybody that, you know, that I am playing well, that this is a great surface for me.
It's a little bit disappointing. I almost felt like, you know, having success against him, like the favorite going into the match. For whatever reason, it didn't work out.

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