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September 7, 2009

Roger Federer


R. FEDERER/T. Robredo
7-5, 6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How confident are you in the Hawk-Eye system?
ROGER FEDERER: Doesn't matter what I think about it. I've talked enough about it.

Q. Everything worked very well today for you except for the dropshot.
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I won one point on set point in the first set.

Q. You lost two.
ROGER FEDERER: Won one, lost two. Not the end of the world, I think.

Q. Talk about what made the first set so difficult.
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I tried to figure him out a little bit, you know, the way he played me. I thought he really played my backhand a lot. I expected him to open it up sometimes towards my forehand, but he didn't.
I was a little bit unsure for a while there, how I should play him. He was doing a good job of keeping me off-balance and being intense from the baseline.
So it was a key to get the break and not having to maybe go through the tiebreak. I was even down breakpoints, so it was kind of tough. Once I got the lead, I could also hit a bit more freely. That didn't allow him to play his game anymore. I got on top of him and played good tennis.

Q. You're coming to the net more and more. Any motivation for that?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I think against the better players, you've got to take time away from them. It forces you automatically to play more aggressive, to go for your shots more. I'm very much a player, the better my opponent plays, the better I play as well. Not that it pulls me down when a guy doesn't play well. It's just I play quite often against guys in Grand Slams that I've never played before.
I'm always a bit cautious. I don't take too many chances, which I should. But it's working. So I'm happy where my game's at right now. Next match is going to be tough, so I'm excited.

Q. Is it true that you play chess as a preparation for a game?
ROGER FEDERER: If I play chess?

Q. Yes.
ROGER FEDERER: Uhm, 15 years last time, so I don't use it as a preparation, no.

Q. What about playing Soderling?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, it seems like he's on a good run again. I think of him, I think obviously of the French Open final, which was a great one for me, a great tournament. He's been able to stay strong.
He played well I think in Bastad, won that. Sort of played okay also through the summer. Here he is in the quarters.
It's a tough challenge. I hope I can play well because it's always kind of close with him. He's a tough player.

Q. Before your match was the Oudin match. Perhaps you got to see it a bit. What observations do you have of the way Melanie Oudin is playing and conducting herself?
ROGER FEDERER: I mean, she's beaten great players on the way now. And I think it's nice for a change that sort of somebody's coming up we haven't heard about much before, because it seems like many women now are kind of known. So if they make a breakthrough, it's not much of a surprise anymore like it used to be. Because before we had 14-, 15-, 16-year-olds making a breakthrough. Every time it was a big story. I think this is very exciting and very much needed on the women's side.
I thought she's done very well. I mean, I haven't seen all of her matches, but the quality players she beat, I mean, it's fantastic. Today, as well, the way she fought and the way she stayed with Petrova was very nice to say.

Q. Any specifics about the way she plays that particularly impressed you?
ROGER FEDERER: No, I guess just the fighting spirit and being solid off the baseline, having some options in her game. It's something that sometimes you don't see so often, unfortunately.

Q. One more win and it will be 22 straight semifinals in slams. Even at 21, are you almost as proud of that as winning 15?
ROGER FEDERER: I mean, I guess when it snaps is when it's a pity. As long as it's going, you go with it, you know. It's not something I aim for. I'm aiming for almost bigger, to be quite honest. I try to defend the title here, not just to reach another semi so my streak stays alive.
I've got to look at the bigger picture, that I stay healthy, that I play a proper game, I choose the right shots, break it down. All of a sudden you forget about the streak.
I hope I can get there again. For this, I need to go through Soderling. I hope I could do it. It would be great.

Q. Having seen up close what Mirka has gone through the last several months with pregnancy and motherhood, what do you think about what Kim has done here coming back and playing as she has?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I mean, I think also there again is a beautiful story. I think she's played very well. Right off the bat in Cincinnati when she came back, that was nice to see and gave you an idea of her almost being also one of the favorites for the US Open, which is quite an amazing achievement.
But it's like riding a bike: once you know how to ride a bike, you never forget that. That's why I'm not that surprised. But it's nice that she found -- she hasn't lost the love for the game. Going out, what was it, 23, out of the game, that's for me just shocking. I don't understand how you do that.
But, sure, they make the breakthrough earlier. Being a woman, obviously you don't maybe want to wait till you're 35 to have kids. But it's nice to see her back in the game and she played great.

Q. It's the 40th anniversary of Laver's Grand Slam in 1969. Can you to talk about that, winning two Grand Slams, '62 and '69, put that in perspective.
ROGER FEDERER: Amazing achievement, no doubt about it. Back then things were obviously very different to the way they are today. But nevertheless, the achievement was, you know, as great, I think.
He was a wonderful person, too. He conducted himself very well, I think an inspiration and a role model for even our generation today.

Q. You have 11 victories against Soderling so far. What has he improved? The last games have been a little bit close. What has he improved since you started to play him 11 times ago?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I mean, I think he's always been a dangerous player. I think once you come on tour, you have a certain game, certain game plan, you can adjust it a little bit. But at the end of the day when it gets important, they play the way when they came on tour. Maybe they're more solid. I think that's what he's become. He's become mentally and physically stronger. And then he knows the game better today than he used to.
These are already three amazing improvements. That's what makes him a great player today.

Q. Is it fair to say at this point with the streak going so well you're playing more out of instinct than you were in the beginning of the year?
ROGER FEDERER: I guess. I guess if things go well, you don't ask yourself that many questions. So yes. But at the same time, I remember almost six years ago, I don't care almost what my opponent's best serve is, for instance, or what his best shot is. I'll just improvise, because I'm very good at that. I concentrate on what I do best. Then I'll decide what comes from my opponent. I'll adjust.
I like playing the game that way instead of, you know, trying to figure out every possible move there is out there.

Q. What has been your favorite thing to do with the twins? How are your diaper-duty-changing skills?
ROGER FEDERER: I don't know. Thank God nobody is judging me on it, but I'm trying hard. I'm trying to be good at it. I guess women are always going to be better at that stuff, you know.
I try hard. It's been a lot of fun, you know, spending time with them. Yeah, every day is something new and something different a bit. Obviously we're waiting also and excited about interaction we're going to soon have with them, being healthy. So we're having a pretty good time.

Q. You're hands-on?
ROGER FEDERER: As much as I can. I'm here. I'm not quite hands-on the way I should be. But, you know, got to play tennis, too. I like it too much to go away.
But, no, I'm hands-on as much as I can, yes.

Q. Talk about you and Genova, playing Davis Cup. Do you remember anything?
ROGER FEDERER: Genova, yeah, I played under-14, I think, maybe under-16 as well. I don't remember, but I was there a long time ago. I used to go on vacation there, as well, with my parents.

Q. When you were a child?
ROGER FEDERER: In Camogli. I used to go there a couple times. Yeah, I mean, I like going to Italy in general. But I wasn't very good back then yet, so let's talk about something else.

Q. How do you keep motivated to go out and beat Hewitt, beating him 13 times in a row, undefeated against Robredo and Soderling? What gets you motivated for the matches?
ROGER FEDERER: It's not like even trying to beat him again; it's just about having fun out there, playing a good match, playing good tennis, enjoying the moment, playing in packed stadiums. It's something not many people get an opportunity to do.
I think everybody would love to be in my shoes. Why should I give away my spot really because I enjoy too much and people love to come see me play? So this is motivation alone for me. I mean, it's plenty. I have plenty of reasons for me to keep on playing.

Q. How important is it to specifically work on footwork exercises? Is it just natural talent?
ROGER FEDERER: I guess the fluent [sic] movement I have is talent maybe. Then again, I needed to work on my coordination after all, even though it was very good as a kid.
Just a lot of hard work, you know, make myself stronger so I have options out there, because if you're not fit, you know, you have to maybe end the points shorter. You know, you're worried about going maybe four or five sets, so it's first of all just getting that out of the way so you can really play point by point, not think about what's going to happen in two hours so that you won't be fit.
I work hard on it, you know. Not every day, but as much as I can.

Q. Robin says you basically don't have any weaknesses. How do you feel about your own game? Do you have any weaknesses?
ROGER FEDERER: Sure. I mean, there's always things I prefer to do over other things. But the good thing in tennis is I think you can avoid those problems, you know.
Look at a big guy, he's going to come to the net. He doesn't need to rally 10 meters behind the baseline. Takes the return early. A little guy is not going to serve and volley because maybe he's not built to play at the net.
That's what I like about our sport. You really have options out there. You play where you're best at and most comfortable at. I try to do the same thing.

Q. What are your impressions so far of the ATP's new CEO? What do you think his priorities should be in that job?
ROGER FEDERER: I think Adam is doing a good job. I really think he's close to the players. We have good interaction. I think the future looks good.
We have a great product at the moment obviously with great players at the top, great characters. It's very exciting now.
Priorities, I don't really discuss those in public. We're trying to be quite more on the side where if there's something to talk about we'll let you know, but otherwise we'll just do it the way we can. I think it's also still great that myself and Rafa and Novak are still on the Player Council, trying to take the best possible decisions not only for the top guys but for the majority of all the players out there because we also came through the little tournaments.
You know, you got to look at the big picture. We're trying to do as good of a job as we can. Seems like he's doing a great job. He's enjoying it, too, which is very nice to see.

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