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January 9, 2008

Richard Gasquet


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How are you feeling?
RICHARD GASQUET: I lost ten minutes ago, so for sure I am a little bit disappointed.

Q. You got two matches here and you missed Adelaide because of your knee. Was your knee any problem?
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, that's important for me. I have no problem with my knee, so it's most important for me for sure. But, yeah, I wanted to go far in this tournament.
I think it's not a big problem for Australian Open because I think I'm ready. I did two matches here and no pain, so it's okay. I will be ready for Australian Open.
But I was in this tournament so I wanted to go how far as possible in the tournament, but he played really well. I tried my best. It's never easy when you have an opponent with a terrible (sic) forehand. It was really difficult for me to play against him.
That's tennis. I did my best. He played better than me today.

Q. You both came into the net. I know you like to volley. Dmitry came into the net a lot. Is that the surface?
RICHARD GASQUET: I think the balls are difficult. The surface is great, no problem, but the balls are too big. I really don't like these balls. For the shoulder it's hard.
They're big, and coming bigger and bigger when -- after one game. After you're playing, big like that, and it's really hard for my serve, for my game.
It's, really, really hard for my serve, for my game. I don't know why they put these ball. The court is great, but not the balls.

Q. So it's the wrong ball for the surface?
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, wrong ball for the shoulder. You have to be really strong to play with this ball.

Q. Is it putting pressure on your shoulders and arms to cope with it?
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah. You have to be really strong. It's not my game to be really strong. My opponent today can serve 220, 225. But me, I have to -- it's really, really hard. So the balls are not good for my game.

Q. Do you know if they will be the same balls in Melbourne?
RICHARD GASQUET: I think, yeah.
THE MODERATOR: They're using the Wilson Australian Open balls.
RICHARD GASQUET: It's okay. I practice with this ball and I played two matches, so I will be ready for Australian Open.

Q. Is it a big adjustment to your game plan then, the balls?
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, because it's really slow, the surface. I heard it could be faster than last year, and I think it's slower. It's really slow with these balls. It's okay. It's the same for everybody.

Q. How will you adjust your game? How will you change your game slightly?
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, I try to play more and more aggressive today. I was far from the baseline, but it's not easy against him because he's hitting the ball really hard.
No, I fight a lot, but I have maybe to go more to the net for sure.

Q. Does this mean someone like a Safin would like this ball on this court?
RICHARD GASQUET: He loves this ball?

Q. Because you're talking about how it helps players who are stronger.
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, yeah, I think. Yeah, I think he can -- when the guy is hitting the ball really hard, yeah, he's putting the ball in the court because the balls are like that.
Yeah, but it's okay. It's not a big, big problem, but I have to play matches to be ready.

Q. You came out with such a great season last year. What are your thoughts going into the Open from 2007 until now?
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, I played great last year. I had problem with my knee after so I couldn't practice a lot, but I think it's ready. It was my first tournament. The tournament is strong. You have to play big guy in the first round and big guy in the second, so I tried my best.
But I think, yeah, I'm feeling good. I'm feeling good, so -- but sometimes you have to play against strong guys like today. I played my best, but I think I'm feeling good. I will try to do the same season as last year.

Q. Do you stay in Sydney or go to Melbourne?
RICHARD GASQUET: I have doubles.

Q. You've had a few days in Sydney. What do you think of our city and what are the highlights?

Q. Yeah, Sydney, what do you think of it?
RICHARD GASQUET: I really like the city. I just went to -- I have maybe to go to Bondi Beach. I will try. If I'm losing doubles tonight I will try to go tomorrow.
It was difficult for me. I play today and yesterday and two days ago. So, yeah, if I am losing I will try to visit the city. I heard it's a nice city, so why not to go there?

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