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January 11, 2014
THE MODERATOR:¬† Questions for Andy, please.
Q.¬† Given you're coming off an injury, are the expectations this year any different?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Yeah, a bit different.¬† Obviously I need to be pretty patient with myself and not expect too much.
But you never know.¬† I've done a lot of training the last few months; it's just I haven't played many matches.¬† So, you know, if somehow I can work my way into the tournament, feel a little bit better every day, then I might start to raise those expectations.
But for now they're not going to be obviously as high as they were the last few years.¬† Just concentrate on my first match.
Q.¬† How are you feeling physically?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I feel good, yeah.¬† I feel good.
Q.¬† Given the amount of time you had off with the operation, do you come into this year with a different perspective having had time to think of where you are in your career?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† No, I mean, I still obviously want and try and keep winning as much as possible.¬† That's always been the goal.
I think when you do spend time away from the tour, especially when, you know, it's pretty full on, a good 10 and a half, 11 months, even the last month I'm training normally hard in December, in the off‑season.
Being away from it, you know, you feel a little bit fresher mentally with all of the traveling.¬† Like right now I'm going to be away basically five months from home.¬† But when I was away from that, when I wasn't able to do the traveling, you start to miss it.
You know, I'm looking forward to the year.¬† Hopefully I can get myself back to 100% soon.
Q.¬† Are you able to gauge where you are with match fitness, how that's going to work out?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† You never know.¬† There's no number you can put on it.¬† You know, it can come almost from one day to the next sometimes, you know, or one tournament to the next.¬† How many matches do you need before you're feeling 100% match fit, I don't know.
But, you know, I played a few matches in Doha, singles and doubles.¬† Then obviously I practiced a lot here.¬† And, yeah, I mean, we'll see.¬† We'll see when the tournament starts.¬† I'll have a better idea what I'm like playing five‑set matches because that's also completely different to best‑of‑three, especially in the heat we're going to be playing in.
Q.¬† What's the main difference when you haven't been playing matches?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† In the game?¬† Body?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Well, obviously there's pressure and nerves and stress and stuff, you know, dealing with playing in front of big crowds again when you've been away from that for a few months.¬† That doesn't just straightaway feel normal again.¬† So that's obviously different.
And then, yeah, I mean, all players will say, I mean, we push ourselves hard in training and in practice, but playing matches, you know, you always will tend to push yourself that little bit harder.¬† You can often wake up, no matter how much training you've done, often after the first match of the year, you might have been training for four weeks in December, you can wake up after playing the first match and feel terrible just because you're going that few percent harder.
Q.¬† This is the first time you've been here since last July.¬† Do you go through a whole new barrage of congratulations on winning Wimbledon?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I mean, not really.¬† I mean, I guess, you know, when we're around the tournament, around here, you're seeing most of the players and coaches and stuff, I've obviously seen a lot since then.¬† So no, not really.
Q.¬† What do you make of all of these peers of Lendl jumping into the coaching fray?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† It's interesting.¬† I think it's good for tennis to see all of these great players back involved in the game.¬† You know, a lot of people talk only about the guys that have won slams.¬† But there's a lot of top, top players, guys like Grosjean, Ljubicic, those sorts of guys, you know, that have been top four, five players in the world before, played in semis and stuff of slams.¬† It's great to have them all around.
But the one thing, the player needs to put the work in.¬† The player needs to be willing to put the work in in the gym, on the practice court and stuff.¬† It doesn't matter how good the coach is, you can have a great coach, but if you don't put the work in, you're not going to get results.
We'll have to see who puts the work in.
Q.¬† Do you think there's something in the cach√© of having won a major?¬† Does that translate into being a good coach or not?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† That depends what you want the coach to do.¬† I don't think winning a major means that you have any idea how to coach technique.¬† That's something very different and a very different skill.
Then there's certain things, like guys that have won majors know how to win tennis matches.¬† They'll understand tactics, pressure situations.¬† They'll understand the mentality you need to have going into major matches.¬† And they'll have a better understanding of sometimes why you'll make certain decisions on the court because of that pressure, whereas if the person hasn't played, it's difficult to understand that.
I don't think winning a major necessarily makes you a great technical coach, but I think it will definitely help tactically and mentally.
Q.¬† Have any of these new partnerships surprised you?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Not really.¬† I mean, like I said, I think if you get closer to the top of the game, the mental side becomes more and more important than the technical side.
So having, like I said, guys that have won majors on your side can definitely help.¬† But the number one thing is the player needs to put the work in, 'cause if they don't it makes no difference at all.
Q.¬† After four or five days of practice out here, what are your thoughts on the state of the courts, the speed of them?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Same as last year, exactly the same.¬† Same balls.¬† Same speed.¬† Laver is a little bit faster than Hisense.¬† Margaret Court is on a very big slope.¬† I practiced on that today.¬† The court is like that (indicating steep).¬† It's weird.
Q.¬† Don't want to be on there then particularly?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† We'll see.¬† I don't know.¬† I don't know what court I'll play on.
But, yeah, the courts and the balls are exactly the same as last year.¬† No different.¬† When it's 40 degrees, of course it's going to play quicker.¬† But the courts are the same.
Q.¬† Do you think your time spent training down in Florida prepared you for this coming week, the temperatures?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I mean, it helps.¬† But the difference between 32 degrees or whatever in Florida, or 28 degrees and 40, it's a huge difference.¬† It feels very different on the court.¬† The court just gets so hot.¬† The air is extremely, extremely hot as well.
I mean, in Miami, there tends to be a breeze.¬† Here when it's 40 degrees, it can be calm.¬† The air feels warm in your face.¬† Your legs and your feet burn.
No, I mean, the stuff that I do there helps, but you can't prepare for that heat.¬† It's very tough.
Q.¬† What are your thoughts on Go Soeda?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I haven't played him before.¬† I've seen him the last 18 months, two years he's been playing on the tour.¬† The Japanese players, a lot of them are fairly similar in the way that they play.¬† They play from the baseline.¬† They like to take the ball fairly early.¬† They hit quite flat.¬† Backhand's maybe a bit better.¬† They compete well.
I'll need to be ready.¬† I haven't played a lot of matches, so I'm not going to look past anyone.
Q.¬† A lot of injuries this early in the season both on the men's and women's side.
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Have there been?
Q.¬† A lot of players have withdrawn or have niggling injuries.
ANDY MURRAY:¬† A lot of people pulled out of here?
Q.¬† Several people.
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I wasn't aware of that, so I don't know.¬† I mean, sometimes, you know, it can be coincidence.¬† There's a big difference between someone having a muscular injury and twisting your ankle.¬† Twisting your ankle is bad luck.¬† Like I think Simon did it yesterday.¬† That's not to do with anything but just purely bad luck or placing your foot down the wrong way.¬† That's unlucky.
If there's a lot of muscular sort of injuries and stuff, then that's something different.¬† That can be down to either not training hard enough, training too much.
Sometimes playing in this heat, if you've been in Europe for a long time, it's freezing cold, coming to this heat, guys can get exhausted pretty quickly, muscles get tired faster.¬† When your muscles get tired, it puts pressure on other parts of your body.
If there have been a lot of injuries, it can be a lot of things.
Q.¬† In your coaching sessions with Ivan, even at a subconscious level, is there a stage where you think it will help your training if you're trying to impress a past great player?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Yeah, that's definitely there at the beginning of the relationship.¬† It's kind of like, yeah, I guess any relationship that you have.¬† If it's with a woman, you know, I would try to impress my girlfriend a lot more the first few months I was with her than I do now, I guess (smiling).¬† I guess that's natural.
But, yeah, it's the same with Ivan.¬† The first few months when I was working with him, yeah, you're kind of nervous going into practice sessions and stuff.¬† That's a good thing.¬† It shows that you care and want to impress him.
But then over time, you get used to having him around.¬† It's not quite the same.¬† But that happens in a lot of different relationships.
Q.¬† So is Kim not getting flowers any more, is that what you're saying?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† She didn't get many flowers at the start either.¬† But, yeah, not so much (smiling).
Q.¬† Has there been much banter amongst the players with the different coaches?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I haven't really spoken to many of the players about it, to be honest.¬† I know, like, a lot of players back in the day didn't get on that well with each other and stuff.¬† It's a bit different now in the locker room.¬† There might be a few interesting dynamics going on there with the ex‑players.
I just think it's cool having them around.¬† It's nice walking into the locker room and seeing Becker there, obviously Ivan is there, Chang, Ivanisevic, all these guys.¬† Guys like Grosjean, I loved watching him play when I was growing up.
It's good.¬† It's good to have all of them around.
Q.¬† Do you ever talk to Ivan about matches he's had, like the match he had in the French against Chang?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† I've spoken to him about a lot of different matches.¬† Not necessarily about individual matches, but matchups with certain players.¬† He would go into certain matches he played them, but more so why he liked and disliked playing certain players.
Q.¬† You could be Hisense or Laver.¬† Would it make a difference to you?¬† You could play with having the roof closed on either court.
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Do they close the roof and then stop the play outside?
ANDY MURRAY:¬† Well, yeah.¬† I'd much rather not play in 40‑degree heat.¬† I don't think there's many players that would want to play in it, to be honest.¬† If I had the option, I'd be in an air conditioned tennis court.¬† Much nicer.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports