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September 11, 2010

Mikhail Youzhny


R. NADAL/M. Youzhny
6-2, 6-3, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Rafa said in the interview on court after the match, he said that he thought perhaps you might have demonstrated that you were a bit tired, and maybe it was a result of the difficult match that you had to get to your quarterfinal match. Would you agree?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: I cannot say I'm really tired, but, yeah, was not fast enough today. I mean, my decision was not really fast. I mean, I moving well, but my head was one step back of my hand and my legs.
So that's why I thinking too long, you know, where I have to play. That's why some mistakes and that's why made the score like this one.

Q. What were the conditions like out there?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: Conditions today, it's was okay. Little bit windy, but, you know, after windy it was previous matches, it was okay.

Q. You've played Nadal a few times. Do you think he's playing better than you've ever seen him play?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: I feel now he looks like serve better than to play before. But tough to say, because play last time against him I think one-and-a-half year ago, long time ago.

Q. More specifically, how do you think his serve is better? I didn't hear the other thing that you said was better. Can you explain a little bit more, please?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: No, my opinion is it's not maybe little faster, but now he serve T wide, the same percentage, I think, and really high percentage first serve.

Q. In terms of defense to offense, is there any better player in tennis than Rafa?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: Well, tough to say, no? Now tough to say who is better than Rafa. I mean, he's No. 1 and he play really good tennis.

Q. You've come close twice now to getting to Grand Slam finals. What do you think you need to do different to sort of take that next step?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: No, it's two different semifinals. Four years ago it was another story. I playing more from emotions in all matches before. Maybe I have little bit tougher draw in this year.
But this year I really glad because I didn't show really my best tennis, my opinion, because I actually serve not so well the whole tournament. But anyway, I was in the semifinal.
So this year, I didn't show my really best tennis and I am in the semifinal. This is good. So maybe if I can show my really best tennis in semifinal or Grand Slams, maybe I can do something more. Maybe no? We'll see.

Q. Overall were you pretty happy with the last couple of weeks?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: Yeah, but right now, you lose the match you cannot be really happy. But actually it was good tournament for me.

Q. First of all, if you can elaborate on that a bit. I mean, you know, I guess it takes a little time to look back and reflect and say, Hey, I got to the semifinals of a Grand Slam. But is it almost that much more difficult? Because you were playing such good tennis coming in, and, you know, you start to think about maybe I can be a finalist here? Or can you look back and say, This was a great two weeks for me; I've played some great tennis?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: No, have to be realistic. Okay, how Rafa play today I don't have lot of chances to beat him, actually. So that's why if thinking like this one, I can start to think about, Oh, I can win Australia; but I pull out third round; I can win Wimbledon, but I lost second round.
So anyway I try to be optimistic, and anyway it was a good two weeks for me.

Q. Do you feel in a way today you might have beaten yourself as opposed to Rafa beating you? Is there a bit of that?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: I feel I play really good one game at 4-3, first set, like was lot of emotions. But if I can play like this on every game against Rafa, maybe - it's not for sure - maybe I can get chance to win.
But I don't have so much emotion like I have this game, so I can like sometimes wake up for some points or some games, but I cannot be consistent for all match.

Q. I think you said in your last press conference that you're hoping to be the bad guy.

Q. You were hoping to be the bad guy or the bad person. That didn't happen.
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: Anyway you have to be nice.

Q. Do you think you have to play your absolute best tennis against Rafa? Is he in that kind of form, that that's the only way you can beat him? Generally, not just you.
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: I think some part of my games has to be best, like I have to -- if I serve like best what I can, maybe I have chances.
But, no, now it's tough to say what I have to do. Match is done and I lost this match. Now I can say whatever about how I have to play to beat him or how he has to miss some points.
But I doesn't want to dream about this.

Q. What do you think overall are the one or two things that make him so tough, that make him the No. 1 player? What are his greatest strengths?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: He's consistent. He play really high level for all year. Not everybody can play like this. Some players play really well maybe three tournaments, and four, five tournaments play not so well. Even top players.
But Federer and Nadal I think is more consistent players. His level is a little bit higher than all other players.

Q. So if final against Federer and Nadal, which one you think?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: No comment. We will see tomorrow. (Smiling.)

Q. The atmosphere out there was quite electric today. I mean, you know, it's the final weekend of the US Open; it generally is. But particularly when you broke back at 4-4 in the third, you really seemed to be able to pump yourself up, and the crowd was clearly with you at that point.

Q. Did you feel that? Can you talk about your mindset at that particular moment and the atmosphere in general?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: No, atmosphere was well today, I mean. And, yeah, in 4-All crowd for Youzhny. I feel this one, but I going slowing down after this game actually.
I play good one point, and finally I miss really easy volley and Rafa played good.

Q. Was there a moment when you thought you might be able to turn things around?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: No, I didn't try to think about now. I don't know, because it's -- I just try to continue to play little -- maybe a little bit more emotions, but it was not easy.

Q. I saw you had a black ribbon on your T-shirt today. Was that to mark today's events, or was that the reason?
MIKHAIL YOUZHNY: Of course the reason because everybody remember the 9/11. Today, nine years, so that's why we still remember.

End of FastScripts

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