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June 29, 2011

Andy Murray


A. MURRAY/F. Lopez
6-3, 6-4, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, Andy Murray. Questions.

Q. For a quarterfinal, couldn't have gotten any better, could it?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, it was good. I got off to a good start in all of the sets. That helps against someone like Feli because he serves well. Normally against the big servers, they like to put pressure on you towards the end of the set.
But because I got ahead early in all of them, I was able to dictate the points from the back of the court and played a good match.

Q. There were four teenagers who were so keen on seeing you play, they waited in queue for three days. What do you make of that?
ANDY MURRAY: It's amazing. I mean, most years here there's so many sort of stories like that. It's great. The tickets here are very difficult to get, especially for the big courts. Yeah, it's dedication, isn't it, to stay around that long to wait for a ticket.
Yeah, it's obviously great that they managed to get in.

Q. Your injury in the third set, what did you do? Do you know more about it in the last hour?
ANDY MURRAY: No, it's just sort of a change-of-direction thing. Little bit sore at the top of my hip, my hip flexor. It was a little bit sore after that, but I was still moving okay, you know. Have a better idea of how it is in the morning.

Q. Out of the four semifinalists you were the only one who didn't lose a set. Are you surprised about what happened in the other matches, especially Federer's defeat?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, yeah, I mean, obviously, you know, I was following the match after Federer, so I was sort of following it a little bit on the TV. It's a surprise for him to lose from two sets to love.
I think Tsonga's an excellent player. When he plays well, he's very, very difficult to beat, especially on this surface. Not necessarily surprised that he lost the match. But having watched quite a bit of it, to come back from two sets to love is a very difficult thing to do. Against Roger at Wimbledon, it's even tougher.
But he served really well and took the game away from Roger. He just served great.

Q. When you look at playing Rafa on Friday, what do you think has changed from a year ago that gives you hope that you can improve on what you did last year against him?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I believe I can win against him. I had chances last year. I was up a break in the third set; had breakpoint on my serve in the second set. I think there was only one break in the first set. We both played good tennis.
But, you know, I just have to have a better game plan. Sometimes it comes down to strategy. Sometimes it comes down to having more experience. Yeah, just have to go out there and play well and serve well and believe and I'll have a chance.

Q. You've kept the beard after saying you weren't superstitious on Monday. Do you think we'll see it on Friday?
ANDY MURRAY: I'm not thinking about it at all. It's not something that keeps me up at night, or when I wake up in the morning I'm not really that fussed about it.

Q. It was painful on Monday, though.

Q. Yes. You said it got to that stage.
ANDY MURRAY: No, it gets to a length where it's sore to shave it for me. So it would be sore for me to shave it. That's why I sort of put it off a little bit.

Q. So we could see it Friday?
ANDY MURRAY: I don't know. Yeah, there's a chance that I might still have some facial hair on Friday, yeah (smiling).

Q. Can you describe what it would mean to you as a British man to win Wimbledon if you got to that point?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I don't know. I don't know what it would feel like. I don't know how I would feel. I don't know 'cause I haven't been there before, haven't done it.
So, you know, I know that it's something that I've thought a lot about, something that drives me to work hard and keep training hard. I'm glad I'm in a position to have a chance of doing it.
But, yeah, I don't know how it would feel. I can only answer that once it's happened.

Q. Did (indiscernible) enjoy the experience of watching you today?
ANDY MURRAY: I don't know. I didn't see him after the match, so I don't know if he did or not. I don't know.

Q. This is your third consecutive semifinal. Does it get easier to deal with, sort of the hype around it?
ANDY MURRAY: The hype is not something -- I don't know. That doesn't make a difference. It's more, you know, the task that's in front of you becomes something that -- you know, I've obviously played Rafa a lot of times at Grand Slams and I've beaten him before at Grand Slams.
I haven't done it at Wimbledon. That's something that I'd like to try to change on Friday. But it's still an incredibly difficult, difficult task. I understand that. I know come Friday I'll have to play great tennis if I want to win.

Q. Back in March, would you have backed yourself to win Queen's and be in the Wimbledon semifinal?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, maybe. You know, I was not in a great position mentally. But, you know, I was trying to say all along I didn't feel like I was in sort of a crisis. I needed to make some changes, needed to think about some things.
But as soon as Monte-Carlo came round, I'd spent some time training, I'd made some changes, got my head in the right place, and my tennis wasn't that sort of far behind. It didn't take that long.
It's not like you lose your game overnight. It doesn't go away. Sometimes it just takes a little bit of time to find it. I said the last couple of years that I'm trying to prepare for the slams as best I can. I'm trying to play my best tennis at the slams.
And, you know, a lot of people were saying to me like, Yeah, it's great that you're winning Masters Series, but when are you going to start performing better in the slams. Start playing better in the slams, don't play all the Masters Series, and all of a sudden I'm in a crisis.
You can't do everything all the time. It's very difficult to be consistent throughout the whole year. That's what separated, in terms of the ranking -- Rafa and Novak this year are going to be 1 and 2, because they've been consistent the whole year. That's something I need to improve on.

Q. If you had to pick a surface to play Nadal, which one would you pick? I guess not a clay court. Between grass and hard court. A few minutes ago Nadal said grass is his second favorite surface after clay with the results he's got.
ANDY MURRAY: Probably hard court, I would have said. I played well against him on hard courts in the past. Also indoors, I think. Indoor hard court would be a good surface to play him on.

Q. In that same press conference, Rafa disclosed a growing friendship between you two. You see each other a little bit more off the court. But he said that he consistently beats you at PlayStation. I was wondering what your thoughts on that are.
ANDY MURRAY: He actually isn't very good at PlayStation. His partner is very good. He plays with Juan Monaco, and Juan Monaco is very good. Rafa's not that good at PlayStation, but he plays with Juan Monaco. As a team, they play well (smiling).
But we were actually talking about it before we went out to play our matches today, because I was playing this putting game and I missed the putt. I blamed the putter, and he said, You always have an excuse on the PlayStation.
Because we always play with their rules. Like there's different camera views, and we play with one camera view and they play with a different one. But we always play with their one. They play with Inter Milan, and we're not allowed to play with Inter Milan even though they're the best team in the game. We have to play with a different team.
Once the game starts, you're not allowed to make substitutions. It's just all their rules. So when we lose, we're a little bit like, Yeah, we blame the rules that they have.
I did play them once with our camera view and we won, but that's the only time we got a chance to play them.

Q. Who is your partner?
ANDY MURRAY: I play with Danny, yeah.

Q. Do you think this is part of the way he messes with your mind?
ANDY MURRAY: I think it winds them up when we make excuses and blame other things rather than just saying that they were better than us. We think we're better and just blame it on other stuff.
But, yeah, come Friday, obviously all that stuff is irrelevant. Just need to put, you know, friendships and stuff to one side and play.

Q. Can't you play him at singles?
ANDY MURRAY: At PlayStation?

Q. Yes. Is that not possible?
ANDY MURRAY: It would be very comfortable for me, so they only play on a team. (Laughter.)

Q. You thrash him at PlayStation singles then?
ANDY MURRAY: We've never played. But I think I'm better, yup.

Q. Which players do you use on PlayStation tennis?
ANDY MURRAY: We don't play tennis. It's football.

Q. Just football?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah. We never play tennis. Just football, yeah.

Q. Will you look back at matches against Rafa tomorrow? And if so, which particular matches will you look back to see? Ones where you played particularly well?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I'll watch a little bit of matches I played against him. Also, like Danny will watch matches that Rafa's played here, 'cause obviously everyone makes changes from time to time.
I don't know exactly which ones. Probably make sense to watch some of the ones on grass and also some of the ones on the quicker surfaces 'cause that's, you know, what grass is, one of the fastest surfaces.
But I don't know which ones in particular.

Q. Obviously you've practiced with Feliciano López in the past. Any chance of you practicing with him?
ANDY MURRAY: No. I might hit with Daniel Nestor, who I practiced with the last couple of days. But I'm not sure if López will be leaving as soon as he can.

Q. Is there a person, place, or thing that you would queue for three days to see?
ANDY MURRAY: Good question. We were actually talking about this the other week.
Yeah, I mean, I'd probably -- for a big heavyweight boxing fight I'd probably queue for that. I don't know if I'd manage three days or not.

Q. Coming into this particular semifinal, mentally do you feel in as good a place as you've been with the way you're playing, the confidence you have, the way you're in control?
ANDY MURRAY: I feel good. I get asked that stuff all the time before the tournament. Are you feeling better than ever before?
You don't know. I feel good. I played well so far and I feel comfortable. But, you know, I don't expect to feel comfortable in the next match. I know I'm going to have to go through moments where I'm struggling, where Rafa hits some unbelievable shots, and have to come back from behind sometimes. You have to be prepared for all that stuff.
But I feel good.

Q. Obviously a bit of banter between Feli, your mom, and you. I wonder whether your mom was embarrassed by it or whether she thinks it's quite good fun.
ANDY MURRAY: I haven't spoken to her about it, but I was embarrassed by it. If you fancy not putting it in the papers tomorrow, I'd appreciate that (smiling).

Q. Did Jamie feel the same way?
ANDY MURRAY: I don't know. I actually haven't spoken to Jamie about it. I don't know.

Q. Your progress so far has been fairly straightforward. Would you prefer that going into a semifinal? Would you have preferred being tested in some longer matches?
ANDY MURRAY: I'd rather be fresh and ready mentally to play against Rafa. You know, it's not like I go into the match with Rafa, like I say, expecting an easy match or expecting to be comfortable.
I know how difficult it's going to be. I know what the task is. So I'll be ready for it.
But, uhm, it's going to be difficult.

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