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July 4, 2012
R. FEDERER/M. Youzhny
6‑1, 6‑2, 6‑2
THE MODERATOR:¬† Questions, please.
Q.¬† It looked very routine again for you.
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Yes.¬† I have a good matchup I guess with Youzhny for some reason, because he is a good player and makes it hard normally for players.¬† I had a tough one with him here last year.
I'm obviously excited about this result here today.
Q.¬† When you have such a good head‑to‑head record against someone, does it help you going into the match?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Well, obviously I think it helps, particularly when you've never lost against someone or you have such a one‑sided head‑to‑head.
You feel that maybe it's up to him to change things up a bit.¬† You just do what usually works against him; if it doesn't, then you just adjust to it.
Then again, every match is different.¬† I don't take these matches easy.¬† I prepare for them like I do for any other big match.
Today things worked out great for me, so I'm very happy.¬† Yeah, it was nice to play with the roof open.¬† It was a great match for me.¬† I played aggressive and served well again.
I'm really pleased with my performance today.
Q.¬† Your 27th matchup with Novak but your first on grass.¬† What are your thoughts ahead of that game?¬† What in his game do you think you need to watch out for on grass?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† I mean, obviously things are not that drastic of a change anymore from clay, hard court, indoor, to grass.¬† But it is interesting that this is our first grass court match.¬† I'm looking forward to it.¬† I haven't put too much thought into it, to be quite honest yet.
I'm just happy that I'm around further than I've been the last couple years.¬† So it's been a good tournament so far for me.¬† I'm happy I'm feeling good again.¬† It gives me confidence going into a big match against Novak.
I'll give a thought now today, tomorrow, and the next day then how to play him on grass.
Q.¬† What has struck you most that he's improved on to be so competitive with you and to take recent matches?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Well, I think it's consistency, you know, just across the board, I think.¬† He used to maybe have a bit of, you know, a match where he wouldn't play so well at times or lose early in a tournament for, you know, some reason.
He also had some health issues early on with his breathing I thought.¬† Little things like that obviously play a role, you know, in the everyday grind on tour.
So I think he's been able to put a lot of these things aside, and he seems a very complete and happy player out there right now.¬† I think all these little things create quite something at the very top, I think.
Q.¬† When you've had him on the edge in some matches, how would you describe his ability to come back even from being almost out?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Uhm, well, he's always been the same.¬† He's been very good and very dangerous, you know, from the first time I ever played him in Monaco ‑ I played three sets against him ‑ until today.¬† It's been 27 times; it's been a lot of matches over the years.
I don't feel that any match is over against a top player like Novak is.¬† With his ability of his shot‑making, you know the match is never over until the umpire calls the score.
Q.¬† What is the personal relationship like given a few years ago you made some forceful comments about him from Davis Cup?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† No.¬† I thought that was more brought up by you guys.¬† Not that you guys are to blame, but you guys like to put something between the top players.
I was just upset at him calling the trainer out for no obvious reason against my buddy, Stan, in a five‑setter.¬† That was it.¬† We had a quick chat about it in Madrid after that, and things are cool since a long time between me and him.¬† I've always respected him.¬† Have I gone out for dinner with him?¬† No.
But had many meetings with him at the council, and then now with the Grand Slams.¬† He's been nice to work with.¬† You know, we've met on several occasions because of other things together.
Yeah, I have no issues with him, and I hope you believe me.
Q.¬† You had some treatments in your previous round, but there didn't seem to be any recurrence of it today.
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Yeah, I'm happy that things were fine out there today.¬† Like you mentioned, today I didn't have to call the trainer.¬† It was straightforward.¬† I could focus on tennis again, on tactics I wanted to play, instead of focusing on, you know, how to manage little issues or big issues, whatever you want to call them.
So for me it was a good match and I'm happy where I am right now.¬† My back is holding up.
Q.¬† Do you still require treatment between rounds?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Yes, regardless how my body is.¬† I think every player goes and gets treatment multiple times a day almost (smiling).
Q.¬† Athletes focus on one match at a time.¬† We're now getting down to the business end, two matches to go.¬† What would it feel like to win here?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Obviously it's a big deal.¬† No denying.¬† Obviously it feels great being back in the semis, like I mentioned.¬† Haven't been here in the last couple years.¬† So this is nice to be back to a place where I've been so many times before.
Usually once I get to the semis, I'm playing some of my best tennis usually for the last couple rounds.¬† Obviously I'm aware that Novak is the defending champion and the world No.1.¬† That's not going to make it easy to come through.
That's the focus now instead of taking it two steps at a time where I know I'm holding the trophy.¬† I know it's possible.¬† I know I'm playing really well.¬† I am aware things are going to get complicated in the next match.¬† I better prepare well, because it's going to be a tough match.
Q.¬† You feel your game is trending in the right direction?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Yes.¬† I've been playing well for a year now.¬† I've been playing well for many months.¬† I'm happy that going ahead into the semis I'm not tired, I'm not injured, I'm not anything.¬† I'm fresh and ready to go.¬† That's how I want to feel before a semis.
It's been a better tournament than in Paris for me anyway.¬† In Paris I struggled all the way through, which I think here I did have some great matches like the last one.
Q.¬† Mikhail appealed to the Royal Box for some advice at one point.¬† What advice might you have given to your opponent?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† I think he was talking to Andre Agassi actually.¬† That's what Andre told me afterwards.¬† I did see him afterwards.¬† It's nice to see some legends coming back to follow us.
Anyway, just jokes.¬† Mikhail is a great guy.¬† He's always a great fight out there.¬† You could see it with his outbursts, trying to get some energy going and just getting pumped up a bit, you know.
Then at times when things are not going so well, you know, he takes it easy, too, which is great to see.
Yeah, we got along very well.¬† It was pretty funny, you know, him speaking to the Royal Box, I thought.
Q.¬† You go out there with a game plan knowing there are certain things you can go on grass which you can't do on other surfaces or things you can't do?
ROGER FEDERER: ¬†Absolutely.¬† Obviously, it's much harder to defend on grass, you know, time and time again than on any other surface, you know.¬† But it's hard to set up sometimes.
Yes, it's unusual, you know, maybe the ball coming flatter at you and then sort of playing it up a bit, but also going flat through the courts your playing little with margins.¬† We're used to playing with much more topspin and giving ourselves margin over the net, but then also into the court at the back.
Whereas on grass I think it's worth it to go closer to the lines, use a lot of the down‑the‑line shots, which aren't easier to pull off on other surfaces.
It's a question of confidence and a question of playing a lot of tennis on grass over the years for me.¬† I think I've played over 100 matches on grass now, so I know how it works.
But it is obviously slowing down, like you said.¬† But I still believe the aggressive player can be rewarded if he plays the right way.
Q.¬† Considering that Novak won here last year but you've won here so many times, does one have a mental edge over the other on Centre Court?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† I'm not sure.¬† Obviously it helps that he won the last couple against me.¬† Again, it is our first grass court match.¬† We don't know quite what to expect.¬† I feel it's a bit of an even ground.¬† You have to ask him.¬† I feel good about the match.¬† I'm excited.
Q.¬† You always seem so in control of your emotions, so collected.¬† We're all human.¬† What makes you angry, tennis or otherwise?¬† What is your pet hate?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Not so much off the court.¬† I'm pretty relaxed, you know.¬† On the court, I don't know, missing 15 forehands in a row would get me upset, but I still don't think I would crush a racquet any more these days.¬† Who knows, maybe one day it will happen again.¬† I hope it's not going to happen.
It's true, there needs a lot to go wrong for me to lose my temper.¬† Maybe I am the way I am today because I used to be completely nuts on the tennis court before.¬† So I was able to turn that around and now, yeah, I know it's just a tennis match.
Q.¬† You're a machine then?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† No, I'm not at all.
Q.¬† You mentioned the Royal Box.¬† Does that make it rather a special occasion having that there compared to other places?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Yes, very much so.¬† I really actually do enjoy seeing legends coming out, follow today's game of tennis.¬† Royals coming out, I think it's inspiring, too, in some ways, believe it or not.¬† It's great for the event.¬† It's great for Wimbledon.¬† It's great for the club.¬† It's great for the players.
It's just nice to see that the Royal Box is always full, as well.¬† It's not ever empty for us.¬† And if it is, you know they're going to come back shortly.¬† They're not here just to drink champagne and tea in the back.¬† They really do come for the tennis.¬† We feel that on Centre Court, and I do feel that.¬† That's probably one of the reasons why I play well on Centre Court.
Q.¬† Will you happily sit there one day?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† I don't know.¬† First I'll have to get an invitation and then we'll see.
Q.¬† Did you meet William and Kate after the match and what they might have said to you?
ROGER FEDERER:¬† Yes, I did meet them.¬† I met Kate for the first time.¬† William I've met again after Australia.¬† They were very nice, very friendly.¬† I was very happy to meet them.
Yeah, had a bit of a chat.¬† What exactly, it's not so important I don't think.¬† But it was a nice conversation.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports