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August 23, 2008

Andy Roddick


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Special place, I would think, for an American player to be back in the US Open playing in New York. Your thoughts on this particular Grand Slam?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, it's obviously the one if you're an American you look forward to the most every year. There's had also a certain energy unlike any other tournament. It's probably not only a tennis tournament but an event, things like today going on outside. The things here going on here. It is a special place for me.

Q. Having been a champion here, Roger was talking about the fact that while he's been not getting the results this year as he has in the past, but having the experience of, you know, getting it done, is always psychologically a big help coming in. Is it for you?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I mean, it was a little while ago when I won, so you'd like to think it's still relevant, but who knows.
I think the biggest thing about New York is playing a night session. It's a different animal than any other tournament. I feel comfortable in the fact that I've been in most situations here at this tournament, good and bad.
So I'd like to think I'm ready for it.

Q. How are you? How do you feel you're playing right now?
ANDY RODDICK: Getting better. I've actual enjoyed having a practice week that's been healthy. I've kind of been going from not playing and then jumping straight into tournaments, which isn't ideal, you know, but you've got to kind of play the hand you're dealt.
So it's been a good week, and, you know, hopefully I'll be there when the final comes around.

Q. You said you've been having some training. How about the two weeks where you weren't playing in the US Open Tour instead of playing Beijing, would that help you here where you had some good results?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I played -- I probably played average in those two events, but it definitely helped me get back into match shape, you know. I don't feel like I was in great shape going into LA. I'd been off for a little while.
And even just playing points in the rhythm of a match, I think that helped.

Q. How does your shoulder feel now?
ANDY RODDICK: It feels fine. Yeah, it's good.

Q. How do you feel about Santoro in the first round?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I mean, it's tricky. He doesn't really play like anybody else on tour, that's for sure. He's certainly experienced and is not going to be intimidated by any situation.
When I've done well in Slams, I've started off with tough draws before. So, you know, you have to be ready to play from the word "go" here.

Q. In terms of travel and jet lag, is there any advantage to having skipped Beijing over a lot of the guys who went?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know. There's a week in between, but I just think for my sake, being able to get two tournaments, getting matches in, and like I said, at least playing my way into shape a little bit after the injuries, was probably a good move as far as my tennis goes.

Q. You talked about the difference of the Open compared to the other Slams. Do you think, Nadal never having gotten past the quarterfinals, do you think it's sort of a disadvantage? I'm not saying he's the clear-cut favorite, but how do you view the fact that Nadal hasn't done well here and everyone's still saying he's clear cut?
ANDY RODDICK: I think it's deserved. I mean, you judge it based on the leadup events, I think, and there's no doubt he's been the best player on tour this year so far.
If anything, he's going to look at it as a challenge that he wants to overcome. He's playing the best tennis, you know. For us to sit here and speculate about what it is about New York, I think you have to hear that from him.

Q. Do you think we can expect another Grand Slam from you here?
ANDY RODDICK: I couldn't hear that.

Q. Do you expect another Grand Slam from you this year?
ANDY RODDICK: From me this year? Well, I'm going to have to start working if that's the case. I certainly hope so.

Q. As an astute observer of the game as you are, can you talk by a little bit about Roger? He's is the three-time defending champion. I know Nadal is playing as well as he is. But can you assess Roger a little bit coming into this tournament, and what kind of chances do you give him?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, I think he's got as good a shot as anybody. I think it's tough to play perfect for five years in a row. He's only done it four years in a row.
You know, I think the biggest thing -- I don't know if he's thinking sometimes out there, but it's a tough situation when you feel like you're getting -- you've made 17 straight semifinals in Slams or whatever it is now, and if you're not thinking about it, being asked about it every day, it's bound to go into your head a little bit.
But I think one big result and it's turned right around for him. I know pretty much every player except for one that would take his bad year. So I think you have to use a little bit of perspective. He's created a bit of a monster for himself.

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