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February 2, 2014

Andy Murray

Leon Smith


A. MURRAY/S. Querrey
76(5) 67(3) 61 63

THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions, please.

Q.テつ Congratulations.テつ Talk a little bit about closing out the tie for the team, Andy.
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah, it was obviously a nice feeling.テつ Yeah, did you guys talk about the match or just how it feels?テつ Yeah, it was a tough match.テつ He started playing some really good tennis at the end of the first set, playing very aggressive, and I had to change my tactics at the end of the second set after I lost it.テつ That made a big difference.
He came out playing very aggressive.テつ I mean, you could hear Jim Courier was urging him to do that all the time, keep swinging and going for his shots.
Once I changed my tactics he wasn't able to do that, and then I was able to dictate most of the points.テつ That's how I got it in my favor.

Q.テつ So Andy, specifically how did you change your tactics?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Started making more first serves.テつ Started serving a bit more into his body.テつ Slowed the serve down a little bit so I gave him less pace on the return.
Then looked to hit the first shot of the rally with my forehand and then dictate the rally with that.テつ Then he started to return closer into the baseline, which was unnatural for him and he didn't return as well from that position.
Then I was able to use the serve differently because of that.テつ When someone stands in close to the baseline than what they normally do, concerns their body a little bit, they have less time.
If you get a good angle on the first serve, it's very difficult for them to recover as well.テつ So that was it.

Q.テつ The essence of any successful Davis Cup team has been the spirit.テつ It's been clear to us watching that good spirits have developed.テつ Talk about the spirit that's in the British team at the moment.
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah, I mean, the thing is it's been fun.テつ I think everyone enjoys the position that they're in.テつ That's very important.テつ There's a lot of sort of motivation there, and great attitude among everyone that's part of the team.
Obviously when you win a lot as well, that builds sort of a confidence and a better team spirit.テつ If you put in all this sort of the effort and the shouting and screaming from the side and the work during the week and you aren't getting the wins, then it's not as easy to come back the next time.
Obviously with the winning as well, that's created a good environment.
CAPTAIN SMITH:テつ Yeah, like I said when I spoke to you after the match courtside, the group of player get on great.テつ Andy has mentioned a few times they've known each other for a an awful long time, since about ten or eleven years old, so that helps.
But also all the support team we've got.テつ I mean, like you guys don't see what goes on obviously behind the seen.テつ But a guy like Shane, the physio this week, just worked his socks off.テつ Happened one of the physios got sick, so he's been covering everyone and doing like 14‑hour days and working himself almost near collapse at the end of the day.
Everyone is prepared to do that.テつ Like I said before, it's predominantly ‑ barring Louis ‑ a British team of people that have been given an opportunity, and they're really passionate about it.テつ They get on great and I think it shows.

Q.テつ Andy, my question for you is:テつ Today you showed really good tennis.テつ How do you feel after going through back surgery?テつ Is that your 100% level?テつ How close do you feel you are to the top level?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ I'm proud of the way I'm playing just now because I had to do a lot of work to get back to where I want to be; I'm still not quite there yet.
But winning matches of that length and quality so soon after the surgery is good.テつ And changing surfaces and stuff, you know.テつ I've done 13 weeks consecutively without a break of training and I'm playing tournaments to try and get myself back.
I need a break now, so I'll take some days off after I get home because I deserve it.テつ (Laughter.)テつ And then, yeah, hopefully when I get back on the practice court next‑‑ in about a week's time, we'll have a couple weeks before my next tournament and hopefully I'll be getting closer every week to playing my best tennis again.

Q.テつ Leon, you've known Andy for years and years, back to the Spanish training days and before that.テつ Two things:テつ Can you share a story from way back when you first saw this guy who emerged to become a world‑class player?テつ And also, what do you think are the one or two qualities that makes him really great?
CAPTAIN SMITH:テつ I get asked this a lot and I sound like a robot every time I answer it.テつ I actually remember Andy before that.テつ I remember Andy when I was ‑‑ I mean, I was a terrible tennis player, but I was playing Scottish tournaments and I remember him being around playing like short tennis, when he was very, very young.テつ Probably about, I don't know, 7, 8, something like that.
CAPTAIN SMITH:テつ But, I mean, the qualities that you see in Andy are something that he's had since he decided to pick up a racquet, or probably since he was born.テつ He's a great role model for everyone.テつ He fights hard.
You saw today.テつ It was an amazing response today after losing the second set.テつ He didn't blink.テつ He just went back out and got back to winning ways really quickly.テつ These weeks are really special as a group to spend the quality time with him because he really shows us how to act on the court, off the court, in everything he does.
The qualities of competitiveness, professionalism, attention to detail, I think those are sort of the main qualities that come to mind.

Q.テつ So even in the early days did he really hate to lose?
CAPTAIN SMITH:テつ Yeah, yeah.テつ That was pretty obvious.
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Especially when I was playing with him.テつ Never allowed myself to lose to the (indiscernible.)

Q.テつ Talk about the historic significance of what it means, what you accomplished today.
CAPTAIN SMITH:テつ Well, obviously the whole team is delighted, not because we beat the U.S. team, but just because of where we're at right now.テつ Seems a little bit surreal.テつ One of the guys in the team room showed me the BBC website and it's us getting ready for the quarterfinal match in the World Group. It's great for all of us.テつ It's great for British tennis as well.
I think about 80 people traveled and paid a lot of money to come and watch the team.テつ Obviously next time, next match I'm sure we'll have a big support coming out there like we had couple hundred, maybe more, out there in Croatia coming out and watch us.
No, it's great for everybody.テつ It's funny to think that Andy wasn't even born the last time we won a World Group and here he is stealing it for us.テつ No, it's brilliant.

Q.テつ Guys, just talk about the surface.テつ Do you think it was a good move?テつ Do you think we outthought ourselves to choose that?テつ Talk about playing on clay.
ANDY MURRAY:テつ I was surprised they put it on clay, to be honest.テつ I was surprised by the decision.テつ When we got here the court was pretty slippy and tough to move on.テつ I would say for myself, one of my strengths is my movement on the court.テつ I didn't know if that was something they had done intentionally or just the nature of putting down a temporary clay court.
Yeah, obviously it did have a bearing in the tie, you know, for Sam especially.テつ I think his best surface is hard courts.テつ He will have had all his best results on hard courts.
You know, maybe even (indiscernible) his match with James a little bit.テつ But, yeah, I was surprised the tie was on clay.テつ But then I don't know if they thought I wasn't going to play because I had problems on clay last year with my back and coming off surgery.
So I don't know.

Q.テつ Take us behind the curtain just a little bit.テつ Since you guys clenched the match, what all have you done as far as celebration?テつ You're in the Padres locker room.テつ Is there champagne?
CAPTAIN SMITH:テつ Unfortunately not.テつ Andy has had a hot bath, ice bath, treatment.テつ Rest of the guys seem to have been answering the numerous messages that you get.
The team bench, as you saw, absolutely shattered.テつ So they kicked back and soaked it up for the last hour, which is actually quite nice.テつ A sort of calmness about it.
No, nothing major yet.

Q.テつ Andy, go back to the first set.テつ Couple breaks going both ways.テつ End up coming away with it.テつ How big of a momentum swing was that for you?
ANDY MURRAY:テつ Yeah, I think it was big for me to win that set because I felt like I was playing the better tennis for the most part of it.テつ Then he started playing better end of the set.テつ Probably played a better tiebreak than me as well.テつ Just missed a couple shots.テつ Like the volley on set point was a bad one, but he got himself into a great position.
If I had lost that it would've been tough after having served for it.テつ Yeah, in these sorts of matches, first set can be crucial.テつ If you look at the statistics of how the top players get on after winning the first set in best‑of‑five matches, they don't lose very often.

Q.テつ (Question regarding the venue. )
ANDY MURRAY:テつ I thought the atmosphere today was the best out of all of the days for sure.テつ The city, I really like it.テつ It seems like a great city.テつ Really nice climate, especially to play tennis.
Great restaurants.テつ Yeah, it's somewhere I would like to come back and visit.テつ That's not always case when we travel around the world.テつ I had never been here before.テつ USTA did a great job with it.テつ Yeah, it was a fun, fun week.

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