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January 3, 2013

Andy Murray


A. MURRAY/J. Millman
6‑1, 5‑7, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions, please.

Q.テつ It's a bit hard to know what to make of that.テつ John was obviously inspired.テつ What's your take on that?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah, I mean I think it was a pretty high‑quality match.テつ You know, even the start of the match was ‑‑ obviously the first set wasn't that comfortable.テつ There was a lot of close games, really long points, tough points.テつ But, yeah, he just made a few more mistakes.
And then beginning the second set I went up 1‑0, had break point, and got the overrule on the baseline, and then his next service game I had Love‑30.テつ If I had maybe taken those chances I could have finished off the match.
When I didn't, he gained in confidence and started going for his shots more.テつ He was returning my first serve extremely well and playing right up on the baseline and just going for big shots.テつ It was tough for me to dictate too many of the points.
I made some adjustments with the way I was serving in the third set that turned it 'round, but he played really, really well for the most part.

Q.テつ Was that the first time you had heard his him is when you saw it in the draw?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ No.テつ I had seen his name before.テつ I hadn't seen him play before.テつ You know, I think it's important when you don't know how someone plays to find out about their character a little bit and see if there is maybe some weaknesses there or what they're like so you kind of know what to expect when you're in a tough match.
From everyone I had spoken to what and from what I had read, he's a very hard worker and a strong, strong mind.テつ So expected a tough match.テつ I didn't expect him to go away at all, and he didn't.
Yeah, I mean, from what people had told me that played against him, they said that he's very consistent.テつ He makes a lot balls.テつ He can play quite a long way behind the baseline and doesn't take too many risks.
And then, you know, he was going for absolute bombs and making them.テつ So you can't read obviously too much into that.テつ If he plays like that, he's going to improve his ranking pretty fast.
But I think, as well, when you start to play up a level and you go for your shots, you realize that that's the right way for him to play if he wants to get into the top 100 and play in these tournaments more regularly.
Maybe beforehand if he's playing defensive and doing a lot of running, it's tough to sort of break through.テつ But if he goes for his shots like that week in, week out, he'll lose some matches for sure, but he'll win more and give himself a good chance at getting to the top.

Q.テつ What's it like for you playing against a hometown boy?テつ Do you just block it out?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ No, it was great to play in an atmosphere like that for the first match of the year, to get back into the swing of playing in front of large and loud crowds.テつ There is obviously a lot of that at the Australian Open.
No matter how much you practice, you can't replicate those sorts of atmospheres.テつ It's important for me to play in them, especially in the beginning of the year.テつ I wasn't too disappointed with the way I played tonight either, so it was a good, good first match for me.

Q.テつ You looked a bit uncomfortable at times.テつ Were you tightening up?
ANDY MURRAY: テつA little bit.テつ It's incredibly humid here and also a lot of traveling, too.テつ There were so many long points, it was very high intensity, and also the new rules with the time as well.テつ So you're playing a lot quicker.
Yeah, just take a little while to adjust to that and playing matches again after such a long period.テつ Again, no matter how much you train you' need matches to get back into the swing of things.テつ At the beginning of most years, the first few matches can be tough on the body.テつ It hurts a little bit.テつ But you get used to it and then you feel better and better.
Like I said, for a first match of the year, that was a perfect match in many ways to go through some tough moments, a lot of long rallies, close games, and important points.
To come through it is important.

Q.テつ Does it feel similar to last year?テつ I think last year you had a close one.
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah, I mean, last year started off slow my first match against Kukushkin.テつ I lost the first set 6‑1 and was maybe a break down in the second and managed to turn it 'round.
Today was a slightly different sort of match, but I had to fight extremely hard in both of them.

Q.テつ Are you meeting up with Ivan here?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah.テつ He gets in tomorrow morning.

Q.テつ When was the last time you saw him?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ December 22nd was the last day I trained in Miami before I went home.

Q.テつ Does that make you more relieved that you won tonight if he's turning up tomorrow morning?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah.テつ He messaged Danny and said, Can you send me the score and what time he's playing tomorrow before the match because he hadn't heard of John before.
So he was obviously expecting me to come through, but it was very nearly a different story.テつ The depth of the game now is so, so strong.テつ None of the matches are easy.テつ It was a bit different back in his day where they could kind of cruise a little bit the first couple rounds.
It's so, so different nowadays.

Q.テつ During the off‑season, I was wondering, did you have a the chance to train with Tsonga?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah, he was there for a few days training, but it never worked out.テつ We had spoken about it beforehand at the Tour Finals in London, but, yeah, it just didn't work out.

Q.テつ With Nadal not coming here there maybe some opportunities for someone to sort of push towards this top four or five.テつ Is there anyone you can see that could make big bounds this summer?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ I mean, there are a lot of guys with very different game styles.テつ You have the big servers, you know, your Isners and the Raonic type players, and someone like Ferrer who is just incredibly consistent.
Over time he's had opportunities.テつ You know, if someone's been injured, or like the US Open for example, you know, he will more often than not reach his seeding.テつ He very rarely loses matches.テつ He's expected to win because he's so, so tough.
Bernard played incredibly well yesterday.テつ I saw a bit of that match, too.テつ There is opportunity there for guys to make a push depending on the draw.

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