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March 21, 2009

Andy Roddick


R. NADAL/A. Roddick
6-4, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. So you want to break it down, the singles match, or is it kind of far back in the memory?
ANDY RODDICK: No, no. I remember.
Um, I think it was always going to be tough on a, you know, slow, high bouncing. I was going to have to execute very well. You know, I kind of hung around and did what I could.
Conditions were real tough out there. You know, his ball was -- even when it landed short it was kicking up, and then there would be the crosswind. I was -- I don't know that I felt comfortable out there today.
Obviously with serving, you kind of have a little bit of a hesitant toss when it's gusty like that. It was tough. I mean, he just handled it better than I did.

Q. You got in the breaker, though. I mean, he served for it at 5-4, huh?

Q. You have the mini break at 2-1 and couple back in there, from what I remember.
ANDY RODDICK: He might have passed --

Q. Oh, that's right, he did. Yeah, he got one low on you, and then a backhand crosscourt.
ANDY RODDICK: I went after the backhand and it was open. You know, when it's open, you have to take a hit. I wasn't real upset about that error. I gave it a ride.
Again, just didn't execute it, but put a good swing on it. Again, it's tough -- it's tough to really line something up and go for it when the ball is adjusting and moving.
Um, you know, but you have to execute, otherwise you're going to be on the wrong end of it. I missed it, and he came up with some good stuff there.
From the middle of the second set on I felt like I played a lot better, but it was a little bit too little too late.

Q. Did you ever feel like you had momentum, because he was serving for the match and you were able to break.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I turned it a little bit, and then I got in a little bit of a mini groove with my serve for one of the first times of the day.
As Matt said, I had a mini break. If you execute there, you give yourself a shot, and then, you know, the third, who knows.

Q. What's the difference between playing him on a slow hardcourt and then you last played him on clay in Spain? What's the playing difference?
ANDY RODDICK: They're both not fun. I like -- it's a lot more fun when the court has a little speed to it, and if you hit a ball through the court you get rewarded.
Clay, I mean, he's great on clay. But my biggest thing is it's a lot tougher for me just from a movement perspective. He pulls you off the court, and I'm doing my whatever, little slide thing, which isn't great, and then doing like little bunny hop steps and then trying to get back. It's a lot easier for me on a slow hardcourt when I have my footing.
As far as the way the points develop, it's probably not too much different than here. The air here, the thin air, might actually make the ball jump more here. But for me, it's just -- the big thing is footing. It just makes a big difference for me.

Q. It's tough to rush the net on him, to state the obvious, right?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, uh-huh.

Q. A few of the approaches were landing short, but even so, especially to his forehand side, looks like he can pretty much get at anything.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, but a lot of those were -- there was a distinct wind from one side. From one side he was getting his hook forehand up on my backhand routinely. That's like Chinese water torture. You're eventually going to -- you know, it's going to affect you in a negative way, you know.
It's just -- I mean, you may be able to fight it off for a stroke or two or three, but eventually that's not going to be a good pattern for me.
You know, you kind of take your shots, and, you know, I felt like, you know, hitting and moving, if I hit it well, it's about executing against him.

Q. Just in general, your history, you've done pretty well: three semifinals here. How do you feel about playing in this tournament? You've been pretty close.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I mean, it's been a little inconsistent. I've had some good moments and I've had some suspect ones.
I mean, they put on a great event here, and that's always fun to come out here and play.
You know, I look forward to coming back. I definitely enjoy my time out here.

Q. I know you've talked about the surface. Do you feel like you're getting closer to maybe winning this one time?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, closer. Yeah, I think with the adjustments I've made this year I think it lends itself to me playing a little bit better on slow surfaces.
I beat Ferrer and Djokovic on a slow court, and I'm not sure if that would happen a year ago.
It's good. You know, we'll try to keep improving.

Q. How do you feel this week, this tournament, helped your tennis this year? How do you feel where you're at with your tennis now this time of year? Feeling pretty good about how you're playing?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, as good as I have been for a while. I mean, if you look at the start of the year, you know, I've won the matches that I've supposed to. I've played well on a variety of different kind of types of hardcourts.
You know, won matches in some different ways and had some good wins. My losses have been against pretty stellar players, and guys that have been playing well at that time, also.
So obviously you always want to win, but I've felt worse leaving a tournament, that's for sure.

Q. You want to break down the final tomorrow?
ANDY RODDICK: It's tough. I think the court probably favors Rafa, just from a, you know, Xs and Os standpoint. The ball getting up, it's going to help -- it helps his serve a little bit.
You know, but I think Andy's had pretty good success against him maybe the last couple times. Yeah, and then played an XO Abu Dhabi. That was a pretty intense atmosphere. It's tough to say. I mean, they're both playing so well.

Q. How do you think the wind will affect that match? It's supposed to kick up even more tomorrow.
ANDY RODDICK: Is it? It's disappointing, because it's tough to make anything look good when it's gusty. It was a little unpredictable. It started this way and then started pushing this way.
It will make it uglier, you know, which probably isn't what anyone wants to hear. But, you know, it is tough.

Q. As slow hardcourts go, how does this rank? Is this about as hard a hardcourt as you play on?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. You can go on a hardcourt and you can literally rub your finger across it. If it's kind of smooth, the ball will move.
Here, you might have cuts. So, I mean, it's pretty slow, which also makes the ball dig in and it beats the ball a little bit more. If you take a ball and rub it on the smooth surface, it's not going to do anything. If you rub it on sandpaper, it's going to blow up. There are a number of factors.

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