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November 14, 2007

Andy Roddick


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Seven unforced errors. You have to be pretty happy with that, especially after the layoff.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. I felt like I hit the ball pretty well in my first match. You know, I didn't feel like even in the second set, when I lost that set, I didn't feel like striking the ball was a problem.
I felt like it was going to get better. You know, some days you have good days where everything feels pretty clean, and this was one of those.

Q. With the importance you put on Davis Cup this year, making the final, has that relieved some pressure at this tournament? Are you more relaxed than you were last year?
ANDY RODDICK: No, I don't think so. If anything, I think there's more because you want to play well just because you know that it actually has some relevance for after the fact. If I come here and play like a dog, that's not good for my prospects for Davis Cup.
Maybe I came here eager because of it.

Q. As much as obviously you would think the match is about how well you play, with the nature of Fernando's game, do you hope he's having a night like he had tonight rather than the one he had against Roger?
ANDY RODDICK: Yes (smiling). I mean, did you ask that question not knowing what I was going to say? I mean, really.

Q. You look down the other side of the court and you don't know exactly what he's going to do.
ANDY RODDICK: I said actually -- I got asked before the match, in the prematch interview, I told Mary Joe I played okay and have beaten him before and played well and lost to him before. He's capable of doing that.
I just said I wanted to take his time away. I didn't want to let him set up and try to hit those big shots. I feel like I did that okay. I thought I did that pretty well.

Q. As you're already through to the semifinals, is it a special opportunity to cut the streak against Roger to play totally freely?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I mean, there's no reason for me to be, you know, nervous. I can go out there and let it fly. The way I see it on Friday night, you know, I can just go out there and play and go for my shots and play aggressive and, you know, try to knock him out.
I'm sure I'll have about seven other guys cheering for me to do that (smiling).

Q. Round robin has worked out for you nicely here. You're the first guy through. Can you refresh our memories on what your take was on it was when they thought about introducing it for tournaments at the start of the year?
ANDY RODDICK: I didn't like it. I think a round robin works a lot better with eight people than it does with 32. I remember I looked at the draw for Delray Beach and I had no idea what was going on with the qualifying through. I'm sitting here going, I'm a tennis player. Now, for the casual tennis fan, I'm thinking they look at that and just don't even want to take the time to figure it out.
You know, that and there's just too many scenarios, you know, with keeping people around when they don't really have a motive to play. I thought there were just too many holes in it.
But credit the ATP for trying something new, trying to introduce something. It didn't work. They fixed it pretty quickly. You know, maybe worth a shot. But, you know, good job for putting it down once they saw.

Q. You weren't surprised when they ditched it?
ANDY RODDICK: No. I think everybody saw it coming.

Q. A lot of players have their own signature sort of post-match bow. Agassi used to go to all four sides. I noticed since you've been here, you're doing something. Do you want to talk about what inspired you to adopt that?
ANDY RODDICK: Nothing really. I mean, I didn't really have it planned. You know, I figured we're here in China. Just something to show a little bit of respect for the fans here, to maybe show them something familiar, you know.
I don't really have anything. Maybe I can just try something new. But it's good luck so far. I might be, you know, in America doing that next year and nobody is going to know what I'm doing if it keeps working (laughter).

Q. Who do you want to meet in the semifinals? Who is the likely candidate you will meet in the semifinals?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know. I haven't studied the other bracket enough, games and sets. There's going to be no easy opponents. I don't really have a preference.
To be honest, I'm not thinking about the semifinals right now. You know, my match on Friday night is important to me, so I'll worry about it after that's done.

Q. You said after your first match you expected to talk to Jimmy on the phone. Did that conversation take place and did you talk tactics or did you just shoot the breeze together?
ANDY RODDICK: Both. You know, he got up, was it 1:00 in the morning, whatever it was, and watched the match live. You know, he was happy with what he saw. The only thing -- he was happy with the way I was playing pretty aggressively.
You know, he was happy with the way I played.

Q. You've talked about how the break allowed you to work on your legs and your volleys and some other things. Considering how everyone else here is talking about how exhausted they are, do you think in a way the break has really helped you at this time of year?
ANDY RODDICK: Maybe. Maybe from a mental standpoint. You know, I'm here, I'm pretty eager. You know, I really geared my fall schedule towards the Davis Cup final and kind of made it known that that was going to be my priority.
So, like I said, maybe I'm a little bit more eager here, especially knowing I have another two or three weeks after this that is still very important to me.
I haven't thought about how much, you know. I don't think we really think about that. We kind of stay in our little bubble of trying to play each set, each point. I haven't really put too much thought into it. But I feel good. I'm happy to be here.

Q. You talked about the next match being very important to you. How do you plan the next match between you and Roger?
ANDY RODDICK: How do I plan it?

Q. Yes.
ANDY RODDICK: Very carefully. That's it, I'm done. That was my answer (laughter).

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