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WESTERN & SOUTHERN OPEN


August 16, 2013


Roger Federer


CINCINNATI, OHIO

R. NADAL/R. Federer
5‑7, 6‑4, 6‑3


THE MODERATOR:  Questions for Roger.

Q.¬† Roger, match went really along the lines of how you hoped up until about 4‑5 in the second set.¬† Can you take us through that game.
ROGER FEDERER:¬† What I remember.¬† I think I remember being up 40‑30.¬† Maybe.¬† I'm not sure.¬† I had a forehand or had it lined up.¬† Anyways, I hit a good serve, and I guess you get out of that game to go 5‑All; he hung tough and got the break.
So I think credit to him for hanging in there, for getting back tough shots, and probably making me hit the extra ball, I don't know.
It wasn't a bad game, but definitely some disappointment in that game.

Q.  Did you think, for the most part tonight, you got your tactics absolutely right?  You played the game on your terms for the most part?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, I guess so.  Yeah, I mean, not totally unhappy about the match, you know.  I could have played a bit better, but at times, you're right, I think I was playing well and tactics were working.
Of course, I always have to adjust to faster courts, slower courts when I play Rafa, plus it is him; it's the type of game I don't see very often.
But I think tonight I did pretty well and felt good out there, serving well particularly for most of the match.  Then maybe a bit less end of the second, beginning of the third.
But I think also maybe Rafa was able to step it up.  So maybe a combination.  So that was the match right there.

Q.  Rafa had quite a hard time to return your serve in the first set, beginning of second set.  Do you think the fact the sun went down, temperature dropped, maybe the conditions changed a little bit had an impact on the match?
ROGER FEDERER:  I don't think so.  I think it's maybe more my quality of serving that went down just a little bit, which was enough for him then to get a little bit more second serves, maybe get back a few more first serves eventually.
So I think it had more something to do with that than the temperature itself.  It wasn't that different in terms of temperature.  So I would put it more on maybe my serving, to be honest.

Q.  Roger, it seemed like you really did seem to rise to the level of the challenge of playing Nadal.  He's been one of the best players.  Do you feel that, yourself summoning better tennis than you have in the past few months just because of who was across the net?
ROGER FEDERER:  The end was?

Q.  Just summoning better tennis than you have in the past couple of months.
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I'm happy with my progress along the way.  Could have won tonight, should have won tonight, who knows?
But at the end, I think Rafa's confidence and the way he's playing at the moment got him through.  So for me, I think it was a good step in the right direction.
My mind's already totally geared into what I'm going to do tomorrow, next day, and the following day, and, you know, looking ahead at the US Open.
So I'm excited about the next sort of ten days.

Q.  Roger, in that final game, you had already saved four match points.  You hit that forehand to hit the net cord and it sailed long.  What was going through your mind when you stood there with your hands on your hips just looking at it going on?
ROGER FEDERER:  Not a whole lot.  Maybe it would have gotten to my forehand anyway, so too late at that point maybe to get really angry.
Should have done better probably at the end of the second, beginning of the third.  So I was playing with very little margin at that point.  A bit of luck maybe would have helped me.
But maybe also Rafa let me back into that game anyway.  So you can take it however you want, but it was just a tough situation because he got the let cord he wanted; I didn't get it right on the shot after that.
But, hey, I've been lucky enough in my life, so it's okay.

Q.  Roger, you said after the last match that one of the things that you wanted out of this week was to get information about your game and maybe about your body going into the US Open.
ROGER FEDERER:  Right.

Q.  So what did you kind of get out of this match in terms of that?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, out of the tournament, I know my body's fine and my mind's okay, so that's two good things looking ahead.
Then definitely getting information in terms of tactics, in terms of point‑for‑point mentality.¬† It's something that's been really difficult to do for the last sort of few months for me.
Either I won easily, and then I have some reason I didn't play well in a match at all and I ended up losing ‑ I don't want to say without any chances because I rarely lose without having any chances at all ‑ but it's good for me to sort of have three tough matches here.
Even the Kohlschreiber match I had to tough it out in the second set.  He had set point eventually, goes down a break, came back in that.
And against Tommy, the situation was really difficult.  Came back in that as well, played well when it mattered.
And then tonight again it wasn't a bad performance, so I can definitely take more things away from this week than I could for the last sort of three months.
So I'm happy about that.  That sets it up nicely for me for New York, I think.

Q.  Roger, did you think about challenging at all on the last point of the match?
ROGER FEDERER:  At this point it doesn't matter.  I'm sitting here.

Q.  Roger, statistics can be a little brutal, but you're probably going to, I think, fall out of the top 5 next week.  I mean, to some, that would be, oh, God, it's a catastrophe, Roger Federer is not in the top 5 in the world.  What's your take on that?
ROGER FEDERER:  What do you think?

Q.  I think you probably quite don't mind that much.
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I don't.  It doesn't change anything for the US Open.  For after that, as long as you're either in the top 4 or the top 8, I think at this point that's what matters.  Or you're world No.1.
So rankings at this point anyway is not what leads me.  It's about getting my game back on track, and that's what I'm doing well.  So that's what's exciting right now, not the rankings really.

Q.  Roger, can you talk a little bit about some of what your charitable foundation is doing around the world at this point.
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, sure.  It's a good time to do that.  I mean, I love those questions, but it's a tough moment to talk about that, you know.  Got all week to talk about it.
No, look, I'm very happy.¬† We're celebrating the ten‑year anniversary this year of the Roger Federer Foundation.¬† It's something I'm clearly very proud of.¬† I can't believe it's been ten years.¬† It's something that's very close to my heart.
In early childhood education in Southern Africa, not just South Africa, but also other countries, and we're looking to increase the quality of the kids going to school, that more kids can go to school.  And if they do, that they have quality education.  That also the teachers are well educated, and then little things follow suit.
So it's something very exciting.  I just had a trip in February.  I don't know if you saw those pictures.  I went to South Africa on a project trip, which was very inspiring.
I hope I can do more in the future.  I'm always looking for ways to raise awareness or get donations and so forth because I'm very passionate about it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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