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U.S. OPEN


September 6, 2013


Andrea Hlavackova

Max Mirnyi


NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK

HLAVACKOVA‑MIRNYI/Spears‑Gonzalez
7‑6, 6‑3



THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions, please.

Q.テつ What does this title mean to the two of you?
ANDREA HLAVACKOVA:テつ I'll start because it's my first one.テつ Well, it means a lot.テつ I never did well in mixed doubles and I could not figure out why, and then I got this great partner.
We didn't do well in Wimbledon, and I was like blaming myself.テつ Then here, you know, playing so well, I started to believe it from the first‑round match.テつ It's great.テつ I'm so happy.

Q.テつ Max, you have won dozens of titles, men's doubles, mixed doubles.テつ What does this one mean to you?
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Well, this one is a special one because it was the first one for Andrea.テつ But like she said, after playing the first time at Wimbledon, right off the bat we felt like ‑‑I felt much easier on the court with Andrea than probably most of my previous mixed doubles matches.
She's a girl, pretty girl, smiles a lot, but she thinks like a man on the court.テつ She looks for ways to win.テつ She's very positive.テつ Even though we lost first round at Wimbledon, I was eager to play again.テつ When she texted me, Should we try again?テつ It was very easy to say yes.
I'm glad I did, because from the first round here we played well.テつ We enjoyed our practice together when we were down, there were plenty of times we were down in a match, semifinal match, today we were down, and there was no sense of panic or, you know, discomfort or negativity.テつ There was always smiles, and we kept on working together.
That's why I believe we did well.
Q.テつ It was a great run.テつ You only dropped one set during the fortnight, five matches.テつ Describe that chemistry you were you starting to touch on.テつ Now there seems to be a real chemistry out there.
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Well, it helps that Andrea has been very successful in doubles.テつ She feels when to do things, how to do it.テつ We kept saying to each other, you know, Keep riding the wave.テつ She's been playing so well in the key moments.
I watched her last couple doubles matches, and she was very clutch player, you know, in that semifinals doubles.
Was it semis or quarters.
ANDREA HLAVACKOVA:テつ Semis.テつ No, quarters.
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Pulling some tough shots at the right moment, and, you know, just kept telling, Work together and just keep pulling out those shots.
She's doing well, and there is no reason to back yourself up when that happens.テつ You know, we were capitalizing on some of these moments today.テつ Andrea had these key returns in the 5‑All game now at the end and got us to serve for the match.

Q.テつ First set was certainly up for grabs.テつ Then there was a major turnaround after you captured that first set.テつ What took place?テつ What was happening?
ANDREA HLAVACKOVA:テつ I think in the beginning I started a bit slow.テつ Max was holding up the whole team, especially, you know, not letting us go down, because I had like a little bit of a tired start when I was also putting myself down a bit with the bad start.
He kept head up and kept on pushing me, even though we were really down in a lot of games after we even won, but we were down in those games like Love‑30 on my serve and like that.
So that was very important for the first set.テつ And then I pulled out good shots when it was really needed by the end of the first set, so that was good to actually finally step up.
Then, yeah, second set we just kept on going.テつ I think we were better in the second set, so it was meant to be to finish like that.

Q.テつ We talked about what this title means to you.テつ What does the game of mixed doubles mean to the sport?テつ What does professional mixed doubles mean to the fans?テつ Many of them are playing.
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Well, I believe the fact that they have added this discipline to the Olympics says it all. I have been part of mixed doubles on many occasions, and I have always enjoyed it.
Even though it's a similar format as a doubles match, it's different in many different ways because different strategies involved, sun, wind, where the girl likes to play, where she doesn't like to play, how she likes to move.テつ It's just another challenge for me, as a tennis player, to try to do well.
When mixed was out there to play, I always wanted to be part of it.テつ Now that it's part of the Olympics movement, I don't see why it shouldn't be there.テつ You know, there is many great characters who play mixed doubles.
It's just another, I would say, maybe another way of displaying doubles on a doubles court.

Q.テつ As you said, you have been with it for over a decade.テつ How much has mixed doubles changed over the last 10, 15 years?
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Well, I think overall it became much more physical.テつ As you see, today is a great example.テつ Abby Spears, you know, treated my serve with ease.テつ And that's disturbing, you know, when a girl stands out there and there is ‑‑ you know, on few occasions I went full on.テつ There are couple 130 miles an hour, 125.テつ She just stuck it back at my feet.
Probably wasn't the case the first time I won mixed doubles here.テつ It was in '98 with Serena.テつ We played, I believe, Lisa Raymond and Pat Galbraith, and the balls were coming back as lollipops at the time.テつ I felt Lisa Raymond couldn't handle the serve up here.
Today Abby is standing on the baseline and returning my shot.テつ That wasn't the case 10, 12 years ago.

Q.テつ Will you share some thought about your feeling that 15 years ago was first title you have with Serena, mixed doubles title, and then years later 2007 with Victoria.テつ These two ladies are now No. 1 and No. 2 players.テつ How they capitalize, how they get the benefit from doubles, used in the singles performance?テつ What feeling is that on the same day they play in the semifinal?
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Well, I think the fact that, you know, they have had such prosperous and long careers after that first title they won.テつ But it being a first Grand Slam title, I cherish it in many different ways, because hopefully that gave them the push to believe that's what Grand Slam tennis is all about.
Both of them were 16 years old at the time.テつ No one could have predicted that they're gonna have careers they're having today and would win so many more major titles.テつ I'm happy and proud to have been part of those moments, because I was a much older and experienced player.
And to be able to play with already good players but still have not ‑‑ you know, the players that still have not won Grand Slams, giving them a chance to play on a big stage and win a major title at such a young age.
I have said it I believe in some other press conferences I kind of feel that I helped the diamond in the rough to be polished.テつ And from a young age, both Victoria and Serena...

Q.テつ Always mention press conferences, Serena and Victoria, always...
MAX MIRNYI:テつ Well, they probably look back and probably would have been as good no matter what, but I was just lucky to be in the moment where they decided to play mixed when they were 16.テつ Just being in the moment and capitalizing on it is also a big part of luck.
Now it's Andrea's turn to keep the tradition going, you know.テつ She's a little bit older, but there is still much more ahead of her.テつ She's a great player.テつ We already know about her doubles success.テつ She's still so fit and plays a lot of singles.
I'm sure this is going to help her feel more comfortable on the singles court.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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