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November 16, 2007

Andy Roddick


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Do you think you are careful enough tonight? This is my first question? The second is, what is wrong with your serve? Here is 60% first serve. I think maybe there is some problems.
ANDY RODDICK: What was the first question?

Q. Do you think you are careful enough tonight?
ANDY RODDICK: Careful enough?

Q. Yes.
ANDY RODDICK: What do you mean? Like walking around, safety-wise? Like against attackers?

Q. The day before yesterday you said when you faced Roger again you will be careful in the match.
ANDY RODDICK: That's called sarcasm. It's like, you know...
Yes, I was careful enough.
The second one was my serve?

Q. Yes.
ANDY RODDICK: 60% was low. The other two matches I think I served 64% and 63%, so all of a sudden I lost tonight and 60% is a problem. You know, I don't know if 3% is that much. I think it had more to do with the guy on the other side tonight.

Q. I haven't heard you talk this week about your foundation. Would you like to talk a little bit about what that means to you, highlights from this year, and plans for next year.
ANDY RODDICK: Well, you know, that's nice because that's probably the one question I could answer that would put me in a good mood tonight.
It's going well. You know, I run charitable foundation back home for at-risk youth, basically underprivileged kids. We had an event a couple weeks ago and raised close to over a million and a half. We hope to be flirting with $3 million raised by the end of the year.
It's probably my favorite thing that I do. It's great. It definitely puts nights like tonight into perspective a little bit more.

Q. Obviously frustrating out there when he's playing that well. Can you give us an idea what's going through your head when you realize he's really on top of his game?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, it seems like most times we play he's on top of his game, which is a little annoying. I guess I just have to figure out, you know, what about my game brings out the best in him and try to adjust. You know, you see some of the guys who beat him are quick, Nalbandian types who can run a little bit more.
Unfortunately, that's not my strength. You kind of have to go with what you're good at, try to make adjustments. When he serves 84%, it makes things a little bit more difficult. I don't know if he's ever served 84% before in his life. That doesn't make it easy.
But tonight's unique just because you got to do your best to mentally rebound. I don't know if the schedule has been released yet, but I'm assuming I'll be first up tomorrow at 5:00. So there's a quick turnaround. You have to have a short memory.

Q. Tomorrow you play David Ferrer. He's the surprise of the tournament. You know him even this year, so what is your opinion for tomorrow?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, I think everybody's surprised except for the actual players who have played against him all year. He's been playing great, and he's probably the most improved player on tour this year. He just seems like he's getting better and better. He's got some wheels. You know, he can get around the court.
You know, I'll have my hands full. I'm going to have to play well if I'm going to want to advance.

Q. You had the best record going into this match in the tournament. I want to get a sense from you how much air this takes out of your balloon? You don't play Roger again tomorrow, but does it affect your own sense of things going into tomorrow's match?
ANDY RODDICK: No, I still feel like I'm hitting the ball well. That's not going to be in question. I think it's more of a matchup issue, to be honest, as opposed to a gauge of how well I'm playing or how well I'm not playing.
Those things said, I just can't let my disappointment from tonight spill over into tomorrow. You know, I get pretty upset about matches. You know, I'm going to have to leave here and try to treat it like a normal night. From here on out it's like a normal tournament.
So just have to pretend somehow I won a quarterfinal tonight and treat it as if I'm in the semis tomorrow, which is easier said than done, but it's what I have to do.

Q. Obviously the frustration is very understandable. Like you say, he's always on top of his game, which is annoying. When you're getting upset, breaking the racquets, it's natural. Does there come a point during the match where you think, The guy on the other side of the net, I'm not going to be able to get it done tonight?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, yeah. I mean, you're down 6-4, 4-0, you're not really adoring your chances (laughter). If I say that I lost hope in the first set or something like that, that doesn't happen.
But obviously, you know, a set and a break or a set and two breaks down you're still trying. You know, I'm never going to give up. Obviously you'd be a fool to think you're the favorite. You realize the chances are getting slimmer the more he gets on a roll.

Q. You were the last one to defeat Roger Federer as an American player. With 40 losses in four years, do you think it was very difficult for American tennis to conquer the Swiss who are dominating the tennis world right now?
ANDY RODDICK: "The Swiss" meaning one guy?

Q. Roger Federer.
ANDY RODDICK: One guy. I don't know if you're going to make it an American versus a Swiss battle when they have one player. No disrespect to Wawrinka, who is top 40. You talk to most people on the street, they're going to talk to you about Federer.
Again, I don't think it's an American thing. Roger has been losing to a lot of people and just beating up on Americans for the last four years... I'm not the smartest guy, but I have this feeling that he's been beating up on people from lots of countries. I mean, I don't know if I misunderstood the question. That seems pretty fair.

Q. Did it make a big difference that Roger didn't have to win tonight?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, he would know the answer to that, right? I mean, I'm sure you asked him the same question. I'm sure he gave you an answer.
I don't know. I think -- you know, I probably would have preferred it if there was something to play for. It had a weird feeling out there tonight. I think maybe a little bit of the excitement was maybe taken away, even in the crowd and whatnot, knowing that both of us were through regardless, and in essence playing for position.
You know, obviously it affects the match a little bit. But, you know, it is what it is. That's kind of out of my hands.

Q. Will you still be confident when you meet Roger again maybe in the final? If the answer is yes, where does the confidence come from?
ANDY RODDICK: To be honest, it would be arrogant of me to look past tomorrow with the way that Ferrer has been playing. I don't feel like that's a question I should even answer, talking about a final when I have a guy who is 3-0 and has beaten the 2 and 3 guys in the world in succession. I just don't feel like I need to answer that.

Q. You mentioned a second ago this being sort of more a matchup problem. When that's the case against a player, what do you do? What's the next step to approaching how to solve that?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, you know, you just dissect it even more. I promise you this isn't for lack of thought or lack of conversation or lack of work, all of the above. My answer probably gets redundant to this question. You get up, you work, you try to think your way through it, hope for that day. There's not much more you can do.
I'm certainly not going to quit or feel sorry for myself. That's not going to happen.

Q. Any thoughts at all, considering how you must feel right now, about not coming in and facing us? Must be not exactly the most fun thing you have to do.
ANDY RODDICK: No, no, that's not a thought. Again, if you want everything good that I think comes along with this profession, which there's plenty of, you kind of have to take the rough nights, too. I've been given more than my fair share of things from this.
To come in an answer questions and give opinions isn't really that difficult in the grand scheme of things. I think I'd need a serious perspective check if I was not coming in here and talking.

Q. Having seen many of your matchups with Roger, I'm tempted to say you really have to serve your absolute best to have a chance against him. Also perhaps would you say you need to do a lot better moving forward, covering the net against him?
ANDY RODDICK: I would agree with the first thing. If I'm going to beat him, I'm going to have to serve well. The net thing, man, I hear that all the time.
Tonight I put myself in good positions at the net. If the guy hits shots, he hits shots. There's sometimes up there tonight I'm saying I played the point the way I wanted to play it, I didn't come out on top of it. Coming to the net, are you talking about lines, angles? Hitting the approach? That's just vague to me.

Q. I'm talking about being a more natural net player.
ANDY RODDICK: How do you become a more natural player?

Q. That's what you're going to have to wake up and figure it out. You said you have to figure it out.
ANDY RODDICK: I've become a better net player. There's not a doubt about that. Like I said, what else are you going to do? You get up and you work on a daily basis. I assure you that's happening. I promise you that's happening.
You know, credit to Roger for putting me in tough situations. It's tough against him. I'd say your right. But I can honestly go home tonight and say I haven't left anything on the table as far as work.

Q. The younger generation appears to be rising rapidly. Seems like in this Masters Cup they're not performing very well, like Richard or Novak. Have you got something to say to them? Are they still too young and inexperienced?
ANDY RODDICK: No, not really. I mean, I don't think you can take a three-match sequence and say that all of a sudden the old guys - old guys, geez - are on top again.
You know, if anything, maybe it's the first time they've had such a long season and played so many matches. I know that's the case for Novak. I'm sure he's played a lot more matches this year than he ever has before. You couple that with all of a sudden becoming, you know, a star in the game, having to make extra appearances. There's a lot that goes along with it as opposed to saying, They didn't play well this week.
If I had to guess, I'd say maybe they're a little worn down. It's a new experience to have to play this long in a season, whereas this is my fifth time I've qualified, so maybe I know what to expect a little bit more.

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