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September 2, 1992

Ivan Lendl


Q. You only lost a couple of sets to Jaime in the five or six previous times you played him. Tonight, you had such a hard time. What is the difference tonight?

IVAN LENDL: I had trouble with finishing off with what I started. I got ahead in the first set so many times and couldn't finish it off. Then in the third set, I was ahead and let him come back. Then the fourth, I had chances, too. 1 didn't take advantage of it and just couldn't seem to do the last thing, just to put him away, the entire time.

Q. How much does that trouble you or is it the fact that you won that makes everything okay or does it bother you?

IVAN LENDL: It bothers you because you just make it more difficult than it is. But it is over and next match starts from scratch.

Q. Ivan, if Jimmy wins, obviously you are going to play him. What are your thoughts on playing him here?

IVAN LENDL: We played plenty of times here and I just hope that I can play better and keep the pressure on him.

Q. When you were out there for such a long time, do you ever notice how long that you have been out there? I mean, the match went nearly four and half hours.

IVAN LENDL: Not really. It is something which is part of it. You want to win, you have to stay out there as long as it takes.

Q. At any point, did you feel that the match was slipping away from you?

IVAN LENDL: Not really. I was ahead all the time, and other than the first set, but one set means nothing. Two sets don't mean nothing here. If you are two sets and something else behind and I was never both.

Q. Chances here, Ivan?

IVAN LENDL: I am still in.

Q. Feel like you are playing the way you want to be playing?

IVAN LENDL: Not today, but I have been playing pretty well, this summer.

Q. The problem putting him away, is that a concentration problem? Is it just he played some good points?

IVAN LENDL: He played some good points; I played some bad points. A little bit bad luck here, a little bit fortunate on the their side there. He just piles up and it just becomes complicated.

Q. Were the conditions bad, the lighting, the time of day, the crowd?

IVAN LENDL: The lighting was changing quite a bit and everyone knows it is really noisy out there. It is not ideal.

Q. With all the attention on Jimmy's age, do you feel a certain age out there? Does it--

IVAN LENDL: I feel fine; don't worry about me.

Q. Jimmy and McEnroe certainly are the sentimental favorites here. You have won three times, you live near by. Does it bother you that you are being a little overlooked?

IVAN LENDL: No, I like it that way.

Q. Yeah?

IVAN LENDL: Yeah. I like to see a lot of empty seats here. I get home earlier. It is good.

Q. Do you think you will be playing when you are 40?

IVAN LENDL: I don't know.

Q. Ivan, last week, you played Petr Korda in the final. Do you think this match was a little bit special for you? I mean, you know Petr for a long time and his uncle.

IVAN LENDL: A match is a match. I don't care who it is. Whether it is my best friend or somebody I know for 20 years or somebody I had never seen. I don't care who it is.

Q. It is a winning start but would you say it is a good start to the tournament?

IVAN LENDL: Yeah, "W" is a good start.

Q. Do you feel any problems you had today wouldn't come back tomorrow; you can put the problems you had today behind you?

IVAN LENDL: Yes, I think so. . It is always difficult the first match. The court is different, the conditions are different. It takes a while before you see the ball properly and so on and so on. It is not easy.

Q. Ivan, the exhibition in Prague in Czechoslovakia in November this year, they played Petr Korda and John McEnroe and Connors. Did you get any offer?


Q. Will you watch tonight? Will you turn it on?

IVAN LENDL: Certainly not. Seen enough tennis today.

Q. Does it ever get tedious or boring for you to have to have to go through a hard match like this? You say you seen enough tennis. Does it become a hard thing for you to win a match like this?

IVAN LENDL: Well, it depends how badly you want it. If you don't want it badly enough, then you are not going to win them; then it becomes very difficult to win it. If you want to win and you keep trying, then they usually come your way.

Q. Ivan, do you know the situation in Czechoslovakia, the last situation?

IVAN LENDL: I heard something about three, four days ago. Is that the last one?

Q. No, I mean in January it will be--

IVAN LENDL: The split?

Q. Yes.

IVAN LENDL: Yes, I do.

Q. And?

IVAN LENDL: I think it is good from what I read and I understand is that the Czech part, voting for the right, the Slovaks are voting for the left. I can't see a country function properly if somebody wants to go right and left; it would be fight after fight. You will be able to go left, fine. If the Czechs want to go right, go right. As long as it is peaceful, I am very much for it.

Q. Do you have any different feeling?

IVAN LENDL: Was it your speech?

Q. I am not that loud. Do you have any different feeling for this tournament now that you are a citizen? Does it --

IVAN LENDL: Not really. I mean, I don't wake up in the morning, look in the mirror add say, yeah, I am a citizen. It is not -- don't get me wrong. It is nice. It is done with and all that, but it is not something you think of in the morning everyday.

Q. After all these years, do you still get excited about a Grand Slam or the U.S. Open?

IVAN LENDL: Of course, you do. It has something special.

Q. What do you think of the recent acquisition of Sean Burke for Bobby Holik?

IVAN LENDL: I am sad to see Bobby go and I am glad Sean is there and Eddie Farmer. It is one of those things. It is something which happens in team sports; people get traded, whether he is a friend of yours or you have never met him. He may get traded. I am sure Brian has done whatever he believes is best for the hockey club. I hope he is right.

Q. Anything?

IVAN LENDL: No last questions. Thank you.

End of FastScripts....

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