home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


August 11, 2008

Lleyton Hewitt


L. HEWITT/J. Bjorkman
7-5, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. It's been a while since you've been on the court. Good workout for you? How did the hit come through?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it's always going to be a little bit different playing back on hard court. That's where I first got the injury, so probably been more worried since Wimbledon, whether it was going to be right. You know, it wasn't too bad. You know, there's still times I can feel it now and then.
But, you know, it was good to get out of that second set and, you know, win that in straight sets, you know, especially with so many matches banking up most days now.

Q. Obviously extra motivation playing for your country. Playing Nadal, does that add sort of a spur when you're out there?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Well, you know, I always look forward to the big tournaments. You know, Wimbledon, you know, able to play Roger, probably a little earlier than I would have liked. It's always nice to play the big names, I think, especially when, you know, you pride yourself on playing well in the big tournaments.
You know, second round's extremely early to play, you know, probably the best player going around at the moment. But it's a good time to knock him off, too.

Q. Physically what capacity are you playing at at the moment? Is that going to be good enough against Rafa, do you think?
LLEYTON HEWITT: It's hard to know. You know, I've only been hitting probably a week and a half or so, I guess, on hard court. So, yeah, obviously it's not the best preparation. I would have liked to have, obviously been playing in Toronto and Cincinnati where, you know, I've played well the last few years. It's not the best preparation.
But, you know, I can only play the hand that's dealt to me. You know, this is it. You know, I'm here. I got a shot at him anyway.

Q. You're 3-0 against Nadal on hard court but is that too much ancient history to have any impact this week?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, that was, you know, a few years ago. But two of them were best-of-five-set matches in a Grand Slam at the Australian Open. You know, one of them probably when he was playing pretty well; the second one in 2005. So, yeah, there's not a lot you can read into it.
But even the matches I've had with him at the French Open and Hamburg on clay, even though I've lost those, you know, Hamburg, I easily could have won. I was one or two points away from beating him. He'd won 80-odd matches on that surface in a row.
I've had small chances against him. But there's no doubt that he's improved since then.

Q. I know you're going to fight hard to prevent this from happening, but with big-name matches like Rafa and Federer, would that pique interest in tennis in the Olympics? I know it's probably not one of the most popular events at the Olympics. Would a couple big-name matches help to that end?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I think any time those guys have been playing in finals, you know, they've been playing some pretty good tennis. So, you know, it would obviously raise the profile probably of the final if those two were to meet in the final.
You know, because they've had such a unique rivalry over the last, you know, two or three years now, as well, and probably more so right at the moment, because Rafa started to get on top of Roger.
Yeah, I think obviously a lot of people know who the both of those two are, even if you're not that big a tennis fan.

Q. Is there a difference playing somebody like Nadal in a second or third round compared to playing him semis or finals? If so, what would those differences be?
LLEYTON HEWITT: There's probably not a huge difference purely because, especially a guy like Rafa who, you know, he's pumped up any time he walks on the court, whether it's practice matches, whatever, whether he's playing golf, you know. That's his personality. So nothing's really going to change, I don't think, between a first round for him or a final.
You know, obviously he handles finals and semifinals extremely well - as well as anyone going around. And that's why he plays so well in those big matches.

Q. Which is the best part to be an Olympic athlete?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I think for us, it feels more like a teams event than anything. When you're playing 11 months of the year, it's a very individual sport tennis. It's basically you and your small entourage that travels with you.
So for me to be able to hang around a guy like Chris Guccione, I think I can teach him a lot, because he's a lot younger than me. He's the next best prospect for Australia. I enjoy hanging around some of the other younger Aussie guys and being a team.

End of FastScripts

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297