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June 29, 2009

Lleyton Hewitt


L. HEWITT/R. Stepanek
4-6, 2-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Lleyton Hewitt. First question, please.

Q. What happened there with your thigh?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Just a bit of a strain midway through the first set. Was just, yeah, causing me a couple of issues out there. I wasn't quite able to move the way that I would have liked early on in the match.
You know, it was frustrating through the second set. So, yeah, just got some treatment. Yeah, tried to forget about it as much as possible.

Q. It was like a different game from then on.
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, a little bit. Yeah, I was able to start dictating play a little bit more and sort of put a bit more pressure on his forehand. He was hitting his backhand extremely well. He was attacking both sides off it and returning well if I missed my first serve.
My serve definitely picked up from then on in, though. I was struggling a little bit pushing off with my left leg on the serve. Got better as the match went on.

Q. Did the treatment do the trick, or were you pushing through a bit of pain in the last three sets?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Still a little bit of pain. Had to get more treatment during the rain delay, as well. Just, yeah, tried to give myself as much chance as possible to go out there and compete.
Yeah, still a little bit of pain out there. But it was enough to get over the line.

Q. Sometimes if you cool down during the delay, it might come up again.
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, a little bit. Wasn't sure whether it was going to work in my favor or not, to tell you the truth. Wasn't a lot I could do. I was able to see my physio, as well, obviously in the locker rooms and then. He knows my body as well as anyone. Yeah, I have a lot more trust in him, as well, knowing what's going on.

Q. Will you have to have any more treatment? Are you confident it's going to be all right for the next match?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I hope so the way I finished off today. Hopefully I didn't do any more damage to it, you know, from that first twinge when I first felt it, yeah, late in the first set.
Yeah, well really we'll do all the same treatment we were doing and everything. Obviously we can work on it today and tomorrow. I'm sure I'll be very close to a hundred percent by Wednesday.

Q. What was going through your head? You're two sets down, probably hurting a bit. Are you thinking, I might be out of here?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Not really. It was tough 'cause I was trying to block out my leg more than anything and focus on not looking at the big picture, trying to get back in, and yeah, winning in five sets.
I was more trying to get the third set under my belt. I really wanted to try to get up a break. Even though I lost the first two sets, in the second set quite comfortably, I felt like I had chances on his service games and I was going to have a lot of chances on his service games.
I just wasn't quite returning the way I would have liked the first two sets. I felt like I if I could start getting into his service games, and put pressure on that, then, yeah, hopefully my whole game could pick up. That's what started happening. I started returning a lot better and I started putting a lot more pressure on his serve.

Q. Are you starting to feel the invincibility of the days when you were first in the world?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, I don't know. Right at the moment I'm just taking it match at a time. Yeah, obviously when you're making the second week of Grand Slams, you know, all the time then sort of on autopilot a lot of times.
You go out there and you trust what you do. Yeah, that's why I've tried to play a lot more tournaments the start of this year to get back in that groove of playing a lot of matches. Obviously winning, you know, these tight matches against quality opponents, that gives you a lot more confidence.

Q. Going back maybe 18 months, two years, do you think you would have been able to pull out a comeback like that with the state your body was in back then?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I've always been fit enough an hungry enough to keep fighting and that never-say-die attitude. Probably more so only that last that year, that eight months whatever with the hip, six to eight months that I was playing and not feeling a hundred percent. Just wasn't a hundred percent sure whether the hip would hold up more than anything. And then other muscles around the hip would start shutting down.
So, you know, it was probably more a question mark just in that period last year.

Q. You made a point of going over to thank your supporters. How much of a role did they play in lifting you today, and how much have they helped you through the tournament?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, they've been great. Yeah, they've been fantastic. I draw a lot of emotion and energy from those guys out there, as well. Yeah, the rest of the crowd, as well, seemed to be all going for me, as well. It's been nice playing Court 2 the last couple of matches. It's been a good arena to play at. I've had a lot of crowd support.
Yeah, especially in today's match when you've got to dig deep, try to find a way out of it, you know they're going to be there for the long haul.

Q. Given the Australia/England thing, do you particularly want to play Murray?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, doesn't bother me. At the moment, I'll just start worrying about Roddick leading at the moment. You know, I'm not worrying about Andy Murray too much yet. I'm worried about Andy Roddick.

Q. How do you feel about Andy Roddick? Can you turn around that result from Queen's, do you think?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, Queen's was only one or two points in the match. You know, I felt like I had the better of him in the actual service games that we were playing. I didn't face a breakpoint in the whole match. Had one breakpoint opportunity on his serve. Wasn't able to take it. Two or three Love-30s on his service games.
You know you're going to get aced out there. You know he's going to come up with big shots. You've got to weather the storm and take those small chances when you get the opportunity. That's what it comes down to playing these big matches at the end of these tournaments.

Q. With Andy Roddick, you're both veterans on the tour. Probably nothing that is going to surprise him about you, and vice versa. How do you go about preparing matches against an old rival like that?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, I'll probably focus more on my game than probably his. As you said, we both know each other's games pretty well. We played at Queen's on the same surface, similar conditions only a couple of weeks ago.
So, you know, I'll just try and work on my game and make sure that I'm executing how I want to, and obviously I'm gonna have to go out there and try and take care of my service games quite comfortably, as well. You know, just wait for those opportunities.

Q. The fans today, are they the same guys that have followed you over the years?
LLEYTON HEWITT: A few of them are. Obviously a lot of expats living in London that have sort of joined in with a couple of the regulars. Yeah, a couple of the guys I know as part of the Fanatics that are at all the Davis Cup ties. There's a couple there that I know.

Q. You haven't got them tickets?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, they've camped out the last -- I keep getting text messages from Wozza saying the boys are camping out every night. I think they're already starting to camp out tonight for Wednesday.

Q. Is he here, Wozza?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, Wozza is not here.

Q. Do you think it gets annoying or a bit unfair for your opponents when you've got them being quite as loud as they were today, being told by the stewards a couple of times to tone it down?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I don't know. You know, I've played in a lot more hostile places I think than playing here. I think they've been great. It's been a good atmosphere. Yeah, for an opponent I'm sure they're not thrilled about it, but, yeah, going against them. But then again, they're not in their face either.

Q. Bec sort of left. Not sure whether she needed a comfort break. She came back at the start of the third. Are you superstitious who is in your entourage, where they are?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, not at all. She might have been seeing the kids. I don't know what she was doing. Yeah, doesn't bother me at all.

End of FastScripts

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