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June 11, 2009

Lleyton Hewitt


A. RODDICK/L. Hewitt
7-6, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Bit of a late start. What were you told?
LLEYTON HEWITT: We weren't told anything. They just said that we had to wait, there was something going on. There obviously was a bit of a commotion out on the court. We weren't 100% what was going on, Andy and I.

Q. Have any bearing at all on either of you?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, I don't think so, no. We both -- yeah, I think we're professional enough now and experienced enough to go out there as soon as we had to.
We had another warmup. Strange. During Memphis this year, Blake and I were in the same situation. Someone had a heart attack in the crowd. It was very similar. To have it happen twice within six months is a bit weird.

Q. Pretty tough to lose a match without even facing a break point.
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it's a bit frustrating, but it's tough. You know, playing Andy you always know that's going to be the case and some chances -- you're not going to have a lot of chances out there.
It's a matter of taking those when you get those small opportunities. In terms of the actual service games, I felt like I was having the better of him. I didn't feel under pressure that much on my service games.
I played pretty clean service games, and, you know, I had one break point late in the second set there and I had two or three Love-30s in the first set and second sets. Against a guy like Andy, you have to take those half chances when you get them. That's grass court tennis, as well.

Q. Yesterday you were talking about it being a good test for you. What do you take away from the match?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I take a lot away. Yeah, not many guys, you know, are going to beat him on this surface. There's only a handful of guys that have the opportunity probably if he's serving that well.
But, you know, I felt like I mixed it with him. It could have gone either way. There was only a couple points here and there. I was an early mini break up in both tiebreaks and couldn't just quite close it out when I needed to.
But still, yeah, overall it's been a good week. Hopefully I can get a good draw at Wimbledon and see what happens.

Q. Is he a real contender now for the big one? I mean, people tend to not look beyond the big two these days. Is that wrong? Is Andy still right in it?
LLEYTON HEWITT: He's definitely up there. I don't know if he's probably got, you know, at the start of the tournament as good a chance to put away three or four, or two or three of those guys, I guess, you know, right up towards the end of the tournament, whereas a couple of years ago he was sort of No. 2, No. 3 in the world. He was probably more so just worrying about Roger; whereas these days those top four guys are going to be tough for him.
Yeah, he's capable of beating them. Whether he can do them all in a row at the end of the tournament if they're all there, that's another question.

Q. You obviously know what it takes to win Wimbledon. What's your kind of assessment of the kind of batting order in terms of favorites for this? Would you say Roger is well out in front?
LLEYTON HEWITT: He's not well out in front. He's in front. You have to put Rafa second very close behind. He's the defending champ, and, yeah, what he did there last year, as well. That's got to be in the back of your mind, back of Roger's mind, as well.
Nadal's the only guy who's beaten Roger on grass for five or six years now. Those two out in front and then the next couple, you know, Andy Murray and Djokovic and Roddick and a few others.

Q. What are your plans between now and Wimbledon?
LLEYTON HEWITT: At this stage, just practice, you know. Just getting more used to the grass. I feel like this week's been a positive week for me. I'm happy the way that I've hit the ball. Yeah, now it's just a matter of fine-tuning a few things and being fresh and mentally ready more than anything.

Q. Do you hope to be back here next year for a chance at a fifth title?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, hopefully. I always enjoy playing this tournament. It's one of my favorite tournaments of the year.
Yeah, the tournament director, everyone looks after me extremely well. Yeah, I try and look after them with results and winning matches out there.

Q. Back on Roger, how much of an effect do you think becoming a father might have on him in the future? And also, the fact that he's now equaled Sampras' record, if he were to go on and beat it and being a father, do you think that would lessen his drive at all, his ambition?
LLEYTON HEWITT: It's hard to speak for someone that's won so many Grand Slams. I would doubt it, though. I think he's -- when you're that good a player, you've got to be self-motivated to be that good and to win that many matches. And to be able to do it, he's got to be extremely mentally tough. You don't lose that. He's not going to lose that. I'm sure every time he gets on the court for the rest of his career he's going to be very hard to beat.

Q. Did it change your focus at all when you became a father?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Not in terms of tennis, no. Yeah, travel-wise, stuff like that maybe a little bit more, but in terms of actual tennis and being in the gym and practice matches -- yeah, actually getting in the gym and practicing, I'm still 100% committed to what I'm trying to do and trying to become a better tennis player.

Q. Has he asked you for any advice? Have you offered any advice?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, I haven't spoken to him about it.

Q. Having seen Andy Murray's development over the last few months and a couple of pretty comfortable wins here, do you fancy his chances as a real contender at Wimbledon?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, absolutely. At the moment -- yeah, you'll probably see how this week pans out, but at the moment, yeah, I'd say he's favored to win this tournament.
You'd probably expect him and Roddick to be in the final now, I'd say. Yeah, at this stage, he's got to be third favorite going into Wimbledon.

Q. After your team's excellent performance in the Twenty 20, any thoughts about the Ashes?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I'm still feeling very confident. Very confident. Could be a blessing in disguise.

Q. Do you think it improves Murray's chances at Wimbledon, Nadal and Federer aren't playing at the moment?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I don't think it makes any difference. Roger's won Wimbledon when he hasn't played a grass court match before going into Wimbledon before, and Nadal is that competitive. He's not going to play one of the seeded players until the third round, anyway, those guys. Yeah, I don't think it's a big deal.

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