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October 16, 2011

Andy Murray


A. MURRAY/D. Ferrer
7-5, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Andy Murray, please.

Q. Would you say in all the circumstances, that was one of the most satisfying days you've had?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, yeah, I mean, the last three weeks have been because, you know, I made sure, like obviously after like Australia this year I struggled for a few months, and also, well, right after Wimbledon I obviously had the match with Kevin Anderson, as well. I wanted to make sure that that didn't happen again.
I was really happy with the way I stayed focused. It's hard to explain. It's almost you'd think the more matches you win, the less pressure you feel. I was hitting the ball well, but there's still a little bit of tension because you want to try and keep the run going. I was really happy I managed to win today because it's always very tough playing against him.

Q. I know it's a predictable question. You look like you belong right at the top. In terms of looking forward, thinking sort of Grand Slam and world No. 1 ranking, what is your immediate ambition?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I think for No. 1, regardless of how I played in the slams this year, it's almost going to be impossible because Novak's done something that will probably never be done again on the tour. He's had a great year.
I mean, I've lost to the No. 1 in the world once and the No. 2 in the world three times. He was No. 1 when I lost to him at Wimbledon and at the French. So two world No. 1's this year in the slams. It's been a tough year in that respect, losing to the very best players.
But I feel like I'm still improving. I feel like these last three weeks were a good step for me. That's all you can do is just keep improving. It's tough to improve by 50% at this stage of my career. But if I keep improving just a little bit, my ranking's going the right direction, I'm winning tournaments, giving myself opportunities at the majors, then I'll win.

Q. With this win, next week you pass Roger in the rankings. How does that feel? I know it's one of your goals for the year, to get to No. 3. Then if you could also talk about Roger's position in the game at this point. Do you think he'll be contending next year for Grand Slams?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, my goal for the year wasn't to finish ahead of Federer or to finish No. 3. I wanted to finish higher than that. My goal for the last three months, four months after the US Open was to try to finish as high as possible and win as many matches as I could. It's obviously been a great start. But I'm still not guaranteed to finish at No. 3. I'm still going to have to win some more matches.
But, yeah, I mean, if you finish in front of Federer in a year, then there's not many people the last five, six, seven years that have been able to say that. So that's obviously, you know, a nice thing if I can do it.
I think that next year he'll still be contending. This year he probably should have won against Novak at the US Open. I'm sure he's disappointed with that. At Wimbledon, he was up a couple of sets as well. Things could have been a whole lot different.
But for a lot of years everything went very right for him. He's had a few tournaments this year where maybe things could have gone his way and they didn't. That's tough. But I'm sure next year he'll be competing. He's still playing great tennis.

Q. What especially about the achievement of these three weeks pleases you most? Just keeping the momentum going? Slightly nervous match today because of the situation riding on it, I suppose.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I started off the match hitting the ball well the first game. Then second game I played a bad service game to get broken. Then from there it was quite a tense first set.
Again, especially in the second set, I was creating a lot of opportunities, hitting the ball well. Yeah, there was a little bit extra tension on the court today because like I explained earlier.
But I think the best thing about it is just winning matches. Even like today, I wasn't necessarily playing my best tennis the whole way throughout, but I served well when I needed to, and that was it. You know, I chased every ball down. I fought for every single point as hard as I could. That's something you need to do if you want to win all the time. If you want to win sometimes, you're going to lose a match if you're not trying to win every single point.
You kind of want to do what Novak has done this year. I've done a small portion of that the last three weeks. You need to fight for every single point. It's tough mentally to do it.

Q. I know you have just opened a microblog account.
ANDY MURRAY: I've been doing it the last few days here.

Q. Why did you choose such a channel to communicate with your Chinese fans? How will it relate to your personal Twitter?
ANDY MURRAY: How will it relate to my personal tweeting? At quite a few of the tournaments, like the US Open, I did a blog for one of the newspapers. A lot of the players do. I think Rafa blogs. Might be for The Times. I am not 100% sure. I've heard they're not written that well, though (laughter).
But, no, I think it's just a good way of communicating at the big events. I think sometimes people are interested to see what you do kind of away from the court because they just see you talking about tennis and playing tennis all the time. I think it's a good thing to do.

Q. After three tough weeks, how does the body feel? As you sort of monitor and study yourself, what has the resilience of these three weeks told you?
ANDY MURRAY: Honestly, I feel fine. Woke up, I mean, back was a little bit stiff today. But, I mean, my legs, your legs get a little bit more tired like after long points, like kind of the accumulation of playing a lot of matches. Literally apart from a few blisters and sore feet, nothing's sore.

Q. So hypothetically you would be all right to start another tournament tomorrow? I'm not saying you're going to, but...
ANDY MURRAY: No, I mean, for sure I could play next week if I didn't have to travel. But also, like, the reason why I probably wouldn't play is not often guys play three weeks in a row is, because like I was explaining, mentally it's quite challenging every day to keep getting up and wanting to win and giving 110%.
I think you need to make sure you're fresh mentally to be able to do that. That's why I'll take the next couple of weeks off.

Q. Would you have been fit enough to do that this time last year or a couple years ago?
ANDY MURRAY: My body feels, I mean, 50% better than it did this time last year in terms of like pain, stiffness, little niggles. Like last year, I remember finishing here, you know, you always feel good when you win a tournament, but kind of like when you get back, you get back on the practice court, like things are sore. Also when I finished at the O2 the last two years, I've been so, so sore. I did play a really long match with Rafa last year and that didn't help. But I feel completely different.

Q. You talked about your defeats to Rafa and Novak this year. Quite apart from what the rankings might say, does it feel to you on the court as the gap between you and those two is inching closer and closer?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, yeah, I mean, I don't feel like I'm that far away. Like when I played Rafa at the French, for example, I felt way closer than I for sure would have done the year before. My clay court game definitely improved this year. The French Open was an important tournament for me because I had the problem with my ankle, ankle wasn't feeling great till after Wimbledon, so I was really happy with that. And then Wimbledon, again, I had some chances in Wimbledon. And the US Open, that was the one I would say I'm most disappointed with in terms of the way I played. Played that one.
But, yeah, I mean, the French and Wimbledon, I definitely had chances, played well. But, yeah, I just have to play better. Yeah, that's it. I just have to play better. There's nothing else to say. I can win against Rafa. I can win against Novak. I just have to play better against them in the five-setters.

Q. Your game seems always stable and consistent, less errors than your opponents. Do you think it's enough for the Grand Slam stage? What else do you have to improve to claim a major?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, just like I was saying, I just need to play better. Most times you make less errors than your opponent you win the match. Like right now, this week, I served very well. I mean, it's important in the Grand Slams for me to get free points on my serve.
I felt like I served horribly the whole time I was in America. I didn't feel comfortable with my serve at all, whereas the rest of the year I felt like I served well, like through Queen's and all those tournaments.
But, yeah, I don't think I need to make huge changes, just like Novak didn't make huge changes to his game this year, he's just playing much better.

Q. Defeating Rafa, overtaking Federer, defending your title here, which one satisfied you the most?
ANDY MURRAY: Uhm, don't know. That's a good question. I mean, the match against Rafa was probably the best match I played. The last set was a set of tennis I'll probably never play one like it the rest of the time I'm on the tour. I mean, that one was nice because I played really well.
But this week I think overall it's satisfying. I didn't necessarily feel like I played amazing tennis, I just think I did the right things, made it very difficult for my opponents, and managed to win a tournament of this size when I still felt like I could have played a little bit better.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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