March 14, 2005
INDIAN WELLS, CALIFORNIA
THE MODERATOR: Questions.
Q. Was it as easy as it looked?
ANDY RODDICK: It was easier than I expected out there today. I think with the conditions, it was pretty tough for everybody. I was lucky that I was able to play in the stadium. I don't think the wind was as bad in there. You know, I'm pretty happy with the way I hit 'em today.
Q. Have you ever won a match in 45 minutes before?
ANDY RODDICK: Yes.
Q. When was that?
ANDY RODDICK: I think I was 10.
Q. Did you expect more from him? Did you feel he was not really into it for some reason today?
ANDY RODDICK: I mean, I don't think you ever expect to win a match out here in a Masters Series event 1-2. You don't go in -- you obviously expect them to be tougher than that. You know, I don't feel he ever found his rhythm out there today. The conditions were tough. If you don't feel like you're hitting the ball super clean, it makes it even tougher with the wind. I'm not sure if that had something to do with it, but maybe.
Q. To play well and to put it behind the Davis Cup, do you feel better about it?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, I'm not going to feel better about Davis Cup. It's a lot better -- you know, it's almost like rehab when you get out there and start playing. Today I played well again. You know, obviously that helps put a positive spin on things. Right now, does it erase the pain from Davis Cup? No. But it helps in the process of, you know, kind of just moving forward.
Q. Might it be that you hit the ball so hard that the wind just doesn't have much effect on it?
ANDY RODDICK: No. I actually didn't -- you know, I wasn't serving huge today. I was kind of trying to hit my spots a little bit more and move it around. It was almost -- because the wind was so strong at the beginning, it was almost easier to play into the wind because, you know, you could hit it hard. You couldn't really touch it with the wind because it was just flying long.
Q. Do you usually play well in the wind?
ANDY RODDICK: I think it comes and goes. I mean, I'm not sure. I don't remember too much. I don't think anybody plays well in the wind. But I've been able to get through some matches in the wind, you know. It never feels totally comfortable out there. But, you know, I feel like I handle it pretty well sometimes.
Q. Was sand a problem?
ANDY RODDICK: I didn't notice it. Like I said, I mean, a lot of the problems that you guys have probably been hearing about all day are probably magnified on the outer courts because there's not as much protection. But, you know, I think especially today I was fortunate to get to play in the stadium. I think that blocks out a lot of wind and a lot of the sand.
Q. Some of the players playing in stadium earlier were complaining of a lot of problems. Do you think maybe as the afternoon went on, it was a little less?
ANDY RODDICK: I mean, I definitely think I had a good time of the day. Even from the beginning of my match till the end, the wind died down a lot. You know, I think I was lucky in a lot of aspects today.
Q. What do you think of the incredible year Ljubicic has been having so far? How do you see the next few months for him?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I mean, obviously it's super impressive what he's done so far. He's lost to Federer. I think he took a little bit of an unexpected loss in Australia. But, you know, with the exception of that, he's been playing great. You know, you always kind of looked at him as a guy who was around 40, 50 in the world, and you didn't really understand why with his serve and the way he was able to kind of keep the ball in the court. You know, I think it's impressive, but not surprising.
Q. Your next match is against Fernando Gonzalez. Can you talk about his game, playing him in the next round.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I actually lost to him the last time we played at the Olympics. You know, he's almost like a right-handed version of my first round match against Verdasco. They both swing from the heels and play huge tennis. There's probably not going to be a whole lot of rhythm. I'm going to have to probably play good defense if I want a chance. He just steps up and plays his shot every time. You know, hopefully I'll just be able to hang in there.
Q. If it's windy, does that help you?
ANDY RODDICK: I wouldn't mind wind. He has, you know, a pretty high ball toss and takes pretty big swings. You know, but either way, you know, you can only worry about that once it's time.
Q. Who do you take to cut down the nets in the NCAA championships?
ANDY RODDICK: I haven't filled out my brackets yet. You know, I'm probably going to be in the ATP pool. You know, it's sneaky because the person I think is not always the person you pick. You want to win, so therefore you try to be the person who picks the sleeper.
Q. You're not going to pick Texas again?
ANDY RODDICK: No, as much as I'd like to see them. I'm friendly with a couple guys on the team. I don't know if they can go all the way. They have a pretty rough draw, too. If they get through the first one, they'll play Illinois second. That will be tough. But, you know, hopefully they'll do well.
Q. Final Four picks yet?
ANDY RODDICK: I'll let you know in a couple days. I'll fill my bracket out.
Q. Still got to research?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, absolutely.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.