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April 15, 2011

Andy Murray


6-2, 6-1

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Just a couple of blips today. Other than that, another excellent performance from you. Must be pretty satisfied.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I thought it was good. You know, I got myself a wee bit behind early in the second set, but came back well from it, saved all the breakpoints I think that were against me.
I think my tactics were good today because he obviously plays a lot on clay, has sort of set patterns of how he likes to play points, changes the direction of the ball a lot, the height of the ball. Didn't let him into a rhythm, so it was good.

Q. Are you happy the way you struck the ball?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah. I was hitting the ball very well. I think everyone hit like a few shanks today 'cause it was a little bit windy. Just a couple of spots like on the service line where the ball was kind of shooting through a little bit. I think because the wind has blown a lot of clay off the court, it's actually coming through a little bit quicker.
But I was hitting the ball really clean, dictating most of the points, running well when I needed to.

Q. Now the semifinal against Rafa on clay. What do you think?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, it's a great challenge for me. Obviously, a very difficult match. But I feel like I'm hitting the ball well. So I need to go in with the right attitude, the right game plan, and play my style of tennis on this surface.
I've played many great matches with Rafa in the past. I always enjoy playing against him. Tomorrow I'll give 110%. I think I've got a chance.

Q. What do you remember of that second set you played against him here in the semis? You played him very close in that set.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I think it was a good standard of tennis throughout. I started to play better towards the end of the second. There was a lot of great rallies in the tiebreak. Yeah, I mean, obviously this is probably where he's played his best tennis, I would have said, the court he likes the most. So I'm obviously expecting him to play his best tomorrow.
But I think having played him here before was good for me. Obviously getting a chance to practice with him, as well, is good. So I expect a very tough match. I know his game well. So I'm expecting him to come out all guns blazing, but I'll be ready.

Q. You've played him on every surface. What makes him such a difficult player on this one?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I find it difficult on all the surfaces. Again, it's like this is the surface he grew up playing on, so he's obviously a great player, the surface that he feels most comfortable on. So, therefore, it's going to be very difficult to play against him.
There's probably not many doubts in his head when he goes out on a court like this because that's just what's natural to him. My natural surface would be hard court because, you know, that's the court I grew up on.
Yeah, it's just a court that he loves. He moves very well on clay. He moves well on all surfaces, but he slides very, very well. I think he has his way of playing on clay. His tactics, he returns differently on clay than he does on other surfaces. It gives him more time to set up and hit the big shots. You can't necessarily hit the ball right through him like you maybe can on a grass court or a hard court.

Q. Is the challenge of playing Rafa on clay the biggest there is in the sport, do you think?
ANDY MURRAY: I don't know. I mean, his record on clay is incredible. It's a great challenge. I mean, whether or not it's the biggest, I don't know. But, yeah, it's definitely up there.

Q. Will you approach that match almost as if it was a final because you're playing Rafa?
ANDY MURRAY: I will just approach it as another match. You know, I understand that tomorrow, if I want to win, I'll have to play one of the best matches of my life. But that's what I've got to be ready for, prepare myself mentally to do. If I do that, I'll definitely make it very difficult for him.

Q. You usually play very well against Rafa. Is that because there are no doubts in your mind about how you have to play against him?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I think most times when you play against the best players, there's an understanding that you're going to need to play great to win against them, and that can normally bring out the best in you. Out of the top guys, I've got the best record against Roger.
But I don't know, maybe it's an age thing. I enjoy playing Rafa the most. And I think that he's the best player right now. That's why I enjoy playing against him.

Q. You mentioned the mental aspect. You've spoken about David Haye helping you with that. Has he contacted you since the win today?
ANDY MURRAY: No, I haven't spoken to anyone since the match today. I've just been cooling down, getting some massage, showering, and then I'll see later who I speak to.
Yeah, it's definitely helped me.

Q. Nice to hear some acclaim for the dropshots today?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah. It was nice when I went out on the court. It wasn't particularly a warm reception, but by the end it was better.

Q. How much information did you grasp from hitting with Rafa on the backcourt?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I know kind of what to expect because I played against him, I don't know how many times, 13, 14 times. I mean, I've watched loads of his matches. It's not like I necessarily learnt anything new from practicing with him.
But definitely it's good to practice with someone like him 'cause you can see where your game's at, the things that are working well, the things that you're going to need to improve. Gave me confidence practicing with him.
I'll play as well as I can tomorrow. If I do that, I have a chance.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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