home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


June 22, 2010

Jarkko Nieminen


6-4, 7-6, 5-7, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You played Andy twice before, but not for three years. How have you changed? How are you playing at the moment? Obviously he's changed.
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Yeah, I have had some injuries over the years, and a big injury last year. I missed five months of the season. I started to come back after US Open.
Yeah, I think I can play at least as good as before when I was, yeah, top 20. Maybe I'm still for working to play consistent and more solid. Still, sometimes like when I was 13 in the world, I had a solid season and my worst game was better.
But I'm pretty happy how I started to play when I started to play tournaments again and I came back. Yeah, now I'm on the way back and feeling good again, healthy, and, yeah, looking forward to play him.

Q. The perception is with the queen coming Thursday that it's gonna be a special day. I suppose you don't want to be cast in the role as the extra, because you have your own ambitions, don't you, for this tournament?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Of course. I mean, I understand Andy's a big favorite. I'm gonna enjoy the situation. I have nothing to lose. I'm just gonna go out there and give my best and still believing I can challenge him.
Obviously it's a great honor that the queen is coming. I heard it already few days ago. Little extra motivation. That's a very special experience to play in front of the queen. So that will be obviously big honor.
But, yeah, I'm looking forward to play Andy. Like I said, nothing to lose. I'm feeling good, healthy. Just go out there and fight hard for the win.

Q. Is it possible it could be a distraction, both a physical distraction, but also mentally coming into this? There will be a lot about the game, won't there?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Yeah, not -- at least not -- I mean, I'm pretty good at concentrating to what happens on the court. Obviously there's a special -- I guess there are some special things we do before the match.
But I think at least I forget very quickly who's -- it's a big honor, but, yeah, I think it's not -- I mean, if it's something, I think it's something positive.

Q. You know that you will discuss this with Andy just before you go out, because it's not a must. You two will decide if you want it curtsy to the queen. And the story is he is Scottish.

Q. If he asks you, you will be okay?

Q. It's your wish to do it?

Q. Have you met royalty before in any shape or form, any queens or kings? The biggest person you've ever met?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Finnish president. But royalties, no.

Q. Do you have to bow to him?

Q. Her, sorry. (Laughter.) She won't like me.
JARKKO NIEMINEN: A handshake. Yeah, little one.

Q. So you've met important women before?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Yes, yes. The most important person in Finland.

Q. What makes Andy such a difficult opponent?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Well, he doesn't have -- obviously he's a top 5 player. If you are top 5, you are great player. But he doesn't have many weak parts or any weak parts in his game when he's playing his best tennis.
He moves well; he serves, returns well; both sides are very solid, forehand, backhand. He's very good changing the pace and the spin of the ball.
At least here in Wimbledon, I think he can play well on any surface. Yeah, it's tough. For the opponent it's not easy to find a weak part in his game.

Q. Are you surprised he maybe hasn't won a Grand Slam already?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: He has been very close. I haven't been surprised. It's just only one player can win. There's always -- most of the times there's Nadal, Federer, maybe one of the best players ever to play the game. So it's also difficult era to win a Grand Slam.
But, yeah, I think if -- obviously he is still quite young. I think he keeps improving, and for sure he will get more chances.

Q. But not at this tournament, if you've got something to say about it?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Yeah, hopefully not this year in this tournament. That's right.

Q. So are you looking forward to playing him. Obviously the crowd will be on his side and it'll be a good atmosphere. Is that something you enjoy?
JARKKO NIEMINEN: Yeah, I like playing on big courts. I was close to beat Roddick on center court in Roland Garros. I had two sets to love against Henman here. Good match on centre court.
So then I played against Nadal in the quarterfinals, 2006, Court 1. So I played -- in all the slams I have played in the biggest arenas, tennis arenas, so it's nothing new for me.
Obviously it's not everyday habit for me. But still, I play many years and also have played against big players on big courts. So, yeah, it won't be anything new.

End of FastScripts

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297