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September 4, 2012

Jim Courier


TIM CURRY:テつ The team has already been announced.テつ Since Jim is on a short time frame, just hit him with questions.
JIM COURIER:テつ Just kidding, Andy Roddick is going to play.テつ He's coming out of retirement.テつ (Laughter.)
Q.Is there Davis Cup after Andy?
JIM COURIER:テつ Well, Andy has certainly set a high bar.テつ He's been the leader of the team for the past decade.テつ God knows how many wins under pressure he'sテつ clenched for us, but we have been playing for transition, for sure, and there are some other players that have stepped up this year.
The team is going to miss Andy, there is no doubt about that.テつ It's a circle of life.テつ You have to move forward.テつ You know, this year between John and Mardy and Ryan and Bob and Mike, we've managed to get some pretty substantial road wins.テつ It's not getting easier for us, but yeah, the team is in good shape.

Q.テつ Obviously the most challenging thing in the sport of Davis Cup is to go to Spain on clay?
JIM COURIER:テつ It's the ultimate ask.

Q.テつ You have shown some difficult situations coming out ahead.テつ You don't have Rafa.テつ You must go in there feeling less of an underdog than you would at the beginning of the year?
JIM COURIER:テつ Certainly at the beginning of the year.
You know, we have had the toughest draw you can have in Davis Cup with the road matches we have faced, and this one is the ultimate ask in current Davis Cup tennis.テつ Going into Spain, playing them on red clay, they haven't lost in a long, long time.テつ We certainly feel like we're going to have a chance, but we also feel like we're not the favorites.テつ We felt that way in the first two matches this year, too.

Q.テつ How concerned are you about John?テつ He's obviously had a good summer but a long summer.テつ He seemed to fade a little bit in the match the other night.
JIM COURIER:テつ Good news for the U.S. Davis Cup is bad news for John's US Open.テつ John losing in the US Open benefits his performance in Spain because he will get more rest and he needed it.
He's overscheduled himself, and he'll learn from that.テつ He's been incredible in Davis Cup this year.テつ He's incredibly excited about Gijon, and he'll get some rest for it now.テつ He's heading back to Tampa, and we'll be heading over Saturday night and gearing up.

Q.テつ Have you talked to him since his exit here?
JIM COURIER:テつ Yeah, I talked to him right after the match.

Q.テつ What's his mindset like at this point?
JIM COURIER:テつ I think he was disappointed in how tired he was.テつ I'm sure he expressed that to you guys after the match.テつ You know, he's fired up about Davis Cup.テつ I think those are the two bullet points.
I think, you know, when John's fresh and focused, he's beaten some substantial players this year.テつ He's going to have to be fresh and focused to stand a chance against Ferrer and Almagro.テつ Those guys, you saw what I saw at the French Open.テつ Those guys were playing some serious clay court tennis.テつ They'll be ready to defend their country's colors.

Q.テつ Have you been following the Spanish doubles team?
JIM COURIER:テつ Lopez/Granollers?テつ Well, they are a very tough team.テつ They hit a very heavy ball from the baseline, some big forehands.テつ Marcel I have seen quite a bit of, not as much of Marc, but I'm familiar with them, sure.

Q.テつ How do you see the other semifinal between Argentina and Czech Republic?テつ Do you have some preference to confront in the final, if any?
JIM COURIER:テつ I mean, look, if we get to the final‑ and that's a huge "if" ‑ let's run the table, let's be on the road all year long.テつ We may as well go to Argentina and play down there, too.
If we're going to do this, let's make this the greatest single road season that anyone's had in the modern era of Davis Cup tennis, at least in my memory.テつ We're frankly not even thinking about that semifinal.テつ We've got enough to worry about with Spain.

Q.テつ Have you talked to Mardy since his withdrawal here?テつ How concerned are you about his health?
JIM COURIER:テつ I haven't spoken to him.テつ I have been concerned about him since back in March.

Q.テつ What's the transition been like for you, the captain, and the input with the players.テつ It's obviously a strange situation because you're not with them all year on the tour, but you still have to give them some advice.
JIM COURIER:テつ It's been a slow process to integrate myself into their teams, because these are players who have full‑time coaches and teams around them.テつ My job is to obviously communicate with everybody that they're involved with, not just the players.
So that was a process for me to get involved that way.テつ I stay in touch with everyone pretty much on a weekly basis, whether it's phone calls or the guys these days prefer text messaging.テつ I have learned how to text, which has been fun (laughter).

Q.テつ Last year Spain came into Roddick's hometown on hard court, came out victorious.テつ How much can you use that as motivational fuel going into this next match?テつ Or does it just feel like another lifetime?
JIM COURIER:テつ It is a different team.テつ It's been a while, in my mind.テつ We have gone through a lot since then.テつ I don't think that it will be a part of a rousing speech that I will give, no.
Let's go watch some tennis.

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