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November 23, 2009

Lukas Dlouchy

Leander Paes


6-4, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Any explanation? It seems like the top two, three teams have all struggled in their matches in this round robin.
LEANDER PAES: Just takes a little getting used to. Different surface, different arena. It's the same for everybody. I think it kind of evens it out a little bit since we're playing here for the first time.
I can't really speak for the other top teams that have lost, but I can speak for us. We just didn't play our best game today. We had a bunch of chances, especially in the second set. Had a bunch of chances to break. I think it was four or five break points. Didn't take it. Weren't good enough for the mark.
Also you have to give credit to the other boys. They came out and brought the game to us. We knew their weaknesses, we knew their strengths. But they managed to play well enough to beat us today.
That's something we have to learn from because we were definitely not half of what we could do normally.

Q. What is your take on that incident in the third game?
LEANDER PAES: I could actually sit here and give you million answers because I saw his interview after.
Really that's the beauty of professional sport. You see people's characters, you know. Especially out there on the court with all the cameras around, all the people watching, you live in a fishbowl environment where everybody sees what you're doing. There's no question, no shadow of a doubt that it touched him. I was very amused to see what he had to say after. That really shows off his character. I just leave it at that.

Q. A few bruises left in the second set. How is the throat?
LEANDER PAES: Well enough to speak (smiling). It's all right. It happens in doubles. That was a fair shot, you know. It was no-ad scoring point. That would have been a decisive break for us in the second. It was a really fair shot.
If anything, I should be ticking off my partner here because he had a fairly comfortable volley. But stuff happens, you know.

Q. He backed you up, didn't he?
LUKAS DLOUHY: I didn't mean to hit him. I was going just for the volley. I hit it hard, but I didn't mean to hit him. Maybe, I don't know (smiling).

Q. I haven't checked the stats, but I can't remember when you weren't on the tour. How long is it? What is the motivation? You're still so competitive out there. It's been a long time? When did you first play?
LEANDER PAES: 1990, September of 1990 was my first tournament in Singapore. I just came off winning junior Wimbledon singles and finals in Australia. I got a wildcard there. Wally Masur was my first mate.
What's my motivation? I think we're so blessed to have such a great profession, being a tennis professional. For a little boy coming out of India, traveling around the world, earning money in dollars, getting to live my dream, getting to make friends all over the world, educating myself by the travel. I guess being Indian was sharp enough to have made some good business contacts, so after my tennis, I can continue with it.
Especially now, 23 years after that, sitting here and looking at the way the economy is around the world, thing like that, to have a profession like tennis, I think I've been so blessed. I sometimes just bow my head and say, Thank you. I think it's a fantastic opportunity we all get.

Q. What is better for you, if you won two Grand Slams and nothing more or one Grand Slam and five Masters 1000?
LUKAS DLOUHY: Actually, we were talking about it.
LEANDER PAES: I think he heard the question before (laughter).
LUKAS DLOUHY: So it's two Grand Slams definitely.

Q. And you, too?
LEANDER PAES: Two Grand Slams and five Masters, no? For sure, two Grand Slams. I think that's what people remember. But for me I guess after winning five Grand Slams now, 10 Grand Slams, you want to play to keep getting better. I think especially after a loss like that today for me, the beauty of tennis is every single day to challenge yourself every single day, to see whether your returns are up to the mark, to see whether your volleys are crisp enough, to see whether you're physically ready to go every day. For me that's the challenge, Grand Slams or not.

Q. You still have this tournament to ask you, but could you look ahead on Davis Cup in a week's time, give us your feeling about your own excitement about being in a final of Davis Cup.
LUKAS DLOUHY: Actually, to be honest, I didn't think about it because I was preparing for my best tournament of the season, which is this Masters Cup. After this one, I want to focus for Davis Cup.
But still, if you tell me before the season that we, with Leander, would win two Grand Slams, get to the Davis Cup final, it would be my dream. So I do my best to get ready for the next week on the claycourt in Barcelona.
So we will see how does it goes here, and then with which confident and which feelings I'm going to Barcelona.

Q. To be part of a team that's the first team from the Czech Republic to be in a final in almost 30 years, it must feel pretty special.
LUKAS DLOUHY: Yeah, it feels very good. Like you said, it was 1980 was the last they won the Davis Cup. All the team, we are pretty excited to make a new one after 30 years. So we do our best.

Q. The fact that you're among one of the best doubles players in the world, Grand Slam titles all that, yet it's so tough for you to get a jersey to be on court to play.
LUKAS DLOUHY: Well, if you have a team, such a good guys like Radek and Tomas, it's tough to get in because they won all the matches what they played in Davis Cup. So it's very difficult for the captain to change the nomination for all of us.
I fully agree with him, because if you have a team that never lost, what can you do? I'm still waiting for the chance. When he call me in, I try to fight as much as I can and be the best.

Q. Is it disappointing to be in that situation? It's a tough situation to be in, but at the same time you're a member of a team and you're supporting the team.
LUKAS DLOUHY: Of course, it's disappointing that I'm not playing in this winning streak in the Davis Cup. But, like you said, I'm part of the team. If team do well, I'm happy.

Q. Do you think there's a chance in Barcelona?
LUKAS DLOUHY: Before every match, it's 50/50. So this is the final of Davis Cup. It doesn't matter about rankings, about players. It matter about one minute in the game, if you get -- I don't know. It all depends on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, three days. We cannot talk about it before.

Q. Will you have the same crowd as you had in Porec?
LUKAS DLOUHY: That's for sure because everybody who I know is going to be there. So I hope the crowd is going to be nice and the people will enjoy it.

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