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June 13, 2008

Lleyton Hewitt


6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Lleyton.

Q. You weren't quite able to launch a comeback like you did yesterday. What do you put that down to today?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, he served a lot better than I did, you know, throughout the whole match, especially on big points. I felt like I was able to get into quite a few of his service games, got to deuce a couple of times even in the first set, and then obviously had three breakpoints in a long game there to break back in the second.
He served well on the big points. I gave him too many looks at second serves. I got off to a slow start, as well, and didn't take it to him probably as much as I could have I think early in the first set.
Yeah, he's as good a ball-striker as there is around right at the moment. And when you let him dictate, he's a very good player.

Q. Did you notice differences in his game on grass this time to Wimbledon last year?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, not a whole heap. He didn't make a lot of unforced errors out there today, though. Last year he served well, as well, on the big points. He's been doing that since he got to the top 10, top 5 in the world. He does that fairly consistently, hits a lot of lines out there, especially on his first serve.
He didn't give a lot of cheap points away out there today. But, you know, I didn't quite put him under enough pressure to be able to -- to put him under that pressure to have him give me a couple of easy points, as well.

Q. Does a loss like that make you feel like you've still got quite a way to go for Wimbledon or are you encouraged by how you've played this week?
LLEYTON HEWITT: It was a strange match because I actually felt like I started hitting the ball pretty well towards the end of the match there. Yeah, he's obviously extremely confident right at the moment. Every time he steps on the court, no matter what surface it's on, he's always going to be a tough player to come up against.
The big difference today was the serving. He served a lot better than I did. If I could have put him under a little bit more pressure and stayed with him early in both sets, then that could have made life a little bit more difficult for him.

Q. Everyone is talking about the aftermath of that final in Paris last week, if the two of them meet up again in the Wimbledon final. Obviously Novak is a contender now, isn't he?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, last year he obviously beat me in a tough match, then beat Baghdatis in a tough match, took the first set off Nadal before he forfeited in the semi of Wimbledon. Up till then he hadn't really had great success on grass.
Yeah, he's just going to get more and more confidence I think playing on grass over the years. He moves as well as anyone out there, as well. He can flatten the ball out, make life tough for both Roger and Rafa, I think.

Q. How is the injury, the hip injury?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it's still hanging around there a little bit. I don't expect it to disappear overnight. Yeah, it's a matter of just getting on the court, trying to get through as well as possible.

Q. Does the hip rule out the golf course?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I haven't played golf for a few months. I haven't actually tested it with golf. When I was home, I couldn't do much for a couple of months really. Haven't been able to test it. But I won't be testing it before Wimbledon.

Q. Normally next week...
LLEYTON HEWITT: I played once last year here. Yeah, I don't think I'll be going out this year.

Q. Next week will just be practice? Will you play a couple of matches in the exhibition?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Not sure. At this stage just practice. I'm happy with the matches I got this week. A couple areas to still work on. Yeah, once I get over to Wimbledon hopefully in a week's time, I'll have more confidence on the grass, as well.

Q. Is there a difference at Aorangi and Wimbledon compared to here?
LLEYTON HEWITT: There's a little bit. I'm not exactly sure what it is, though. That's the hardest thing. But it's definitely a little bit of difference. It probably starts a little bit longer I'd say at Wimbledon, but it's got to last two weeks as well, whereas here it's only a week's tournament. The first couple days at Wimbledon, it's probably a little bit longer than they need to have it here.

End of FastScripts

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