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November 7, 2009

Mary Joe Fernandez

Melanie Oudin


7-6, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Can you talk about how the rain delay, if at all, affected you? You were playing really well. You were up a break in the first set. Did it affect you? And if so, how?
MELANIE OUDIN: Rain delays, anything can happen. I think it definitely didn't really help me or not help me, but I think it definitely helped her. She came out and started playing a lot better and wasn't missing anything when she came back out.
She changed her game a little bit, and I started off a little bit slow. You can't control the weather, and so it was just what was supposed to happen. I did the best I could.

Q. Mary Joe, a little bit different situation than the last two ties for you. How did your coaching change? Obviously you're trying to keep them up and tell them they're doing their best.
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Yeah, you know, it's about them making the right plays and doing the best they can with their strategy. I actually thought both of them did a really good job. Alexa had a chances early in. The beginning of the match was really important.
Pennetta wasn't hitting the ball that deep, was a little tentative, and Alexa wasn't able to capitalize on that, but still was trying to do the right things by mixing it up and chipping, attacking the serves.
Melanie as well. Melanie, it was just a couple points that made a difference in that match. You know, two points from winning the first set, but she made a lot of good plays. She tried to go for the right shot at the right time.
I think the conditions got a lot worse for us because is it got colder and it was much heavier, so it was much tougher to earn that point. Francesca hits a very heavy ball. I do think the rain and the cold weather did not help.

Q. Was that a harder role for you as a captain?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: No, because whether you're winning or losing, you're still focusing on your players' game and what they need to do each point.
So you're losing and still focusing on the right things; when you're winning, trying to keep doing what you're doing. Wasn't a lot that we wanted to change. It was just trying to continue to do the right things.

Q. Melanie, obviously the match didn't go the way you wanted. Might be too soon, but what do you think you can take from that match?
MELANIE OUDIN: Well, I haven't played Francesca in a really long time. Getting to play her again, she's improved, I've improved. It was a lot closer this time. The first set I think really a key point , because after that she really kind of ran away with it, you could say. I think she started getting more pumped up and the crowd helped her a lot. I had lots of chances in the first set, so losing was pretty tough.
But I fought hard throughout the whole match. She played some really good points, and I thought was a good match overall.

Q. You start off first against Pennetta tomorrow. Is that almost better for you now that you've got that really urge and hunger to come back out and play really well tomorrow first and not have to wait?
MELANIE OUDIN: Yeah, I've been looking forward playing Pennetta because she's done so well this year and she's a top 10 player. I'm just gonna go out there tomorrow and play my game, and hopefully I can win tomorrow.

Q. Mary Joe, what do you say to the players tonight in this position where you're two nil down? With two young girls like that, what can you say and do tonight?
MARY JOE FERNANDEZ: Again, it's back to the process and trying to improve every time you step on the court. Whether you have a win or lose, you're trying to get better the next chance you have a chance to play.
It's an opportunity. Mel goes first. It's her opportunity to do even better than she did today and make better plays, you know, better choices all the time.
Fed Cup, you have to go a match at a time. We've seen a lot comebacks from two-love down. It's a new day.
Really, it's more about trying to be better the next time on the court, whether it's here now and then going forward the next time around. So working on your game and making good decisions on the court.

End of FastScripts

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