May 4, 2004
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Andy, please.
Q. Did you find it hard to concentrate today after a traumatic weekend, really?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I wasn't concentrating for one reason or another, I'm not sure. I don't think it was because of that. I just went out there, I was rushing things. I definitely don't think I put forth my best effort today, so it's a little disappointing.
Q. Is it much different, the clay here than in Houston?
ANDY RODDICK: Actually, this surface probably suited me a little better. You know, the surface was fine. I think the wind had blown a lot of the clay off. The balls are going through the court very fast here. You know, I was pretty excited about the conditions when I got here. So, you know, if it is different, it was different in a positive way.
Q. You said the weekend's events weren't the reason, but did it come to your mind at all, any flashbacks, anything like that?
ANDY RODDICK: No, it's tough to put out of your mind, you know; it's going to creep in. But point being, I had a tennis match to play and, you know, I didn't play it. I had plenty of days to get ready and kind of get myself mentally ready, and I didn't do that. That's pretty much the bottom line.
Q. Obviously, you had treatment on your knee. How is that?
ANDY RODDICK: It's fine. It's just something that comes from time to time, you know, just from playing week after week after week. And, you know, it's okay, it's nothing too serious.
Q. How much does it bother you, the fact that on clay you seem in troubles when you have to perform well, especially if you lose the first set, then you start looking like disappointed and not believing in yourself?
ANDY RODDICK: What's your question? Was that a question or a statement?
Q. No, just asking.
ANDY RODDICK: What did you ask?
Q. I'm asking, how do you explain it? I mean, what is your reaction to the idea that people say that you, on clay, have some troubles to adjust?
ANDY RODDICK: Okay (laughing). It's no secret that it's not my favorite surface, but it's, you know, definitely something that I'm trying to get better on. I think everybody has a weak surface; clay happens to be mine. But, you know, something I'm working on to improve.
Q. Looking back to when you first played here, you obviously got to the semifinals. Was that, in some ways, beginner's luck or what?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know. It's weird because usually I feel really good on clay. It's just when I have an off-day, I feel really bad. Obviously, it's not my first surface, but, you know, I've had good results. I've won four tournaments on it; semi, like you said, here at the Masters Series event. My first year on Tour I probably played better on clay than I did on hard. I think it's just a matter of getting matches under my belt on clay. It's getting over that first hump. If I would have gotten maybe past a round or two here, I think I would have started feeling a lot better. So that's what I have to do.
Q. What is going to be your schedule before Roland Garros?
ANDY RODDICK: As planned right now, you know, we have Hamburg, then I have a week off to train in Paris, then Roland Garros.
Q. Will you stay here all week?
ANDY RODDICK: I'm not sure yet. I, you know, am still pretty fresh off the court. I'll probably have to talk to Brad and talk to Doug and see what our game plan is.
Q. Is it safe to say he's the last person anyone would want to be playing if they were having an off-day?
ANDY RODDICK: No, I mean, I can think of a couple - maybe Federer (laughing). I don't know if he's the last person, but, you know, any player in this tournament's going to make your life really difficult, especially one who's very comfortable on clay, puts a lot of balls in. Let's say he's not the ideal opponent you'd want to play if you were having an off-day.
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