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June 7, 2010

James Ward


6-3, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I suppose you're a little disappointed having got that lead in the second set, James, that you didn't go on and get to a third?
JAMES WARD: Yeah. Definitely I played -- played a good game to go to Love-40, and then he served well the first point.
Next point played well, as well, still had a chance. Then he threw in the double fault. It was a cheap point, which I gave him a few of those, as well.
Disappointed to lose my serve straightaway back. If it would have gone 5-2, probably would have been a bit different. But even then at 5-All, had 40-15 on my serve and maybe risked a bit too much on the second serve then. But again, next point he still hit a couple good shots.
I mean, I had chances. You could see there's not much difference between the two players. I've seen him for the last few weeks. He obviously did well in the French, but apart from that he's been on the Challenger tour, as well. I'm very much there or thereabouts.

Q. Can you say what the difference is -- I mean, I've seen you do tremendously well, going around and picking up points going to the plateau almost where you are now, the difference between that and then getting to, say, 120 in the world, what is it in the players? Is it consistency?
JAMES WARD: I think it's consistency every week. You've got to put in the same sort of performance every week. Everyone has dips and everyone obviously plays really well for a few weeks of the year.
If you just look at the point breakdown of most players at the top, they have a couple of good weeks, and then the rest of the year they're just solid. They don't play 10 amazing weeks where they win 10 tournaments. It's only Federer and Nadal who does that. Everyone else is pretty solid. Court finals, second round, first round, court finals, the second round. It goes pretty much like that everywhere.
And even our level is the same. If you stay around 350, it's because you're making quarters, again sort of first round, you're not really that consistent. It only takes a couple of good weeks and you'll be up to sort of the 150 area.

Q. How can you get more consistent?
JAMES WARD: I'd love to know, because I'd be there. (Laughter.)
No, obviously working at it and playing all the weeks and trying to play to your best ability every time and focus and work on different parts of your game so that you know when you get into different situations in the match what to do.
It's different being out there than it is to being on court 17 in India, you know. It's completely different. And at 5-All, maybe you've got a short forehand, you don't hit it as well as you normally would on any other day in practice. But it's just about getting that experience and on a more regular basis playing the bigger tournaments and on the bigger courts.

Q. Do you still feel as if there is that step within...
JAMES WARD: Yeah. I mean, I'm obviously comfortable. I played a good match at Davis Cup last time and that was good atmosphere to play in.
I played Queen's the last two years. Last year I played Baghdatis, and he played really well on the day here before he passed quallies and lost to Safin in three. I've been on that court a couple of times, but still it's the first time this year I played on a big Stadium Court really. The rest of the year you don't really get that many chances.

Q. Do you get the sense also that it takes the crowd here a little bit of time to warm to the fact that there is a British player out there?

Q. That crucial moment in the match when you could have done perhaps just a little bit more oomph there, it wasn't really there?
JAMES WARD: Yeah, maybe so. Obviously if you're at home you expect the support just like any other foreigner does when they're at home.
I mean, I can't complain about the sport today. I had family there, and those are the important ones for me. That's what my focus is while I'm on the court and try not no listen to too much about what's going on around me.

Q. Have you spoken much with Leon since his appointment?
JAMES WARD: Yeah, Leon has been really good. I've been in contact with Leon the whole time I was in America. I was away for seven weeks. E-mails, text messages, BBM, everything. It's been really good communications.
Since I've been back, he's been to see me practice a lot, and I'm looking forward to working with him at Davis Cup.

Q. And getting the sort of the Lithuania result -- I know you have your win, but getting that one out of the system, it will be nice to get out there and be on the winning side?
JAMES WARD: Yeah, it would be nice, yeah. Obviously I think we could have won the last tie as well, but we're definitely favorites for this one being at home and on the grass and me personally playing -- played Ilhan twice already this year and won both times, so I'd be backing myself to win a third time if I do get to play.

End of FastScripts

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