Showing posts with label Interview Transcript. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Interview Transcript. Show all posts

Rafael Nadal Interview Transcript!
Q.  Two very small questions.  First, when you were sitting down, everybody was taking your photo.  You picked up the trophy, and you were looking at the names on the trophy, counting them.  Whose names were you looking at, yours or someone else’s?
RAFAEL NADAL:  No, I was looking at the winners.  No, no, no, no.  For me is very small, and I wasn’t counting.  I just go year by year.
Q.  Downstairs your Uncle Toni was telling us that he thinks that you are unlucky to be playing in this era of Djokovic, Federer, you.  Is that how you see it?  Do you think you’re unlucky to be in such a fabulous era for tennis?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I feel very lucky to achieve all what I achieved until today.  I have great rivals, but, you know, even if it’s good era of tennis, playing against fantastic players, no, I’m more than happy to enjoy matches like I had.  I enjoyed a lot the final of Australia, today.  I suffered, but I enjoyed.
A lot of important finals for me, a lot of important matches that I was able to enjoy against fantastic players like Novak, like Federer, like Andy.
For me, you can feel unlucky or lucky, both.

Q.  Congratulations, Rafa.  You had a hard two‑part final.  Since last night, how did you prepare technically, physically, morally?  Analyze the situation where you lost eight games in a row on clay, which is very unusual.  How did you handle it this morning?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Yeah, the conditions were really unusual, too.  No, the ball was heavier than ever.  At the end, the bounces start to be bad last half an hour of match yesterday.
In my opinion, the conditions were much more favorable for Novak than for me.  At the same time, I am playing against the best of the world, the best of the world with good conditions probably for him.  He played, in my opinion, fantastic that eight games in a row.
He didn’t have mistakes.  He return fantastically well, and he did probably everything very well in that part of the match.
That’s true that I lost meters behind the baseline.  I really felt that I wasn’t able to push him back like I did, especially at the beginning of the match and then for moments.
He was able to push me back almost all the time.  I felt that I was in a completely, you know, negative positions almost every time on that period of match.
So, for me, the last game was very important after eight games in a row, losing the last one and before the stop.  That game that put the 2‑1 on the score was very, very important.

Q.  Congratulations.  Were you happy that the match was stopped last night?  Was it easy for you to sleep last night?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Seriously, I was very nervous during all the night.  I was a little bit anxious to play what remain of the match.  But even if was clearly good thing for me, I stop the match yesterday, because with that conditions, well, seriously, the last couple of games, the conditions of the court was not the right ones to play a final of a Grand Slam, you know.  We had to stop.
Anyway, I felt that was a positive stop for me.  I really felt that the stop against David Ferrer in the semifinals with set and 4‑1 was not positive for me.  At the end was positive for me.  And the stop before that we come back to the court that with 6‑4, 5‑3, I felt that was not positive for me, too, neither.
That’s true.  The last stop was important for me, especially because the conditions of play was not the normal ones in this court.

Q.  Congratulations.  You’ve won this title seven times.  Can you talk about that?  Novak said you’re definitely the best male player to ever play on this surface.  Can you address that?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, thanks for the words, what Novak said.
I don’t know if I am the best or not.  I really ‑‑ I am not the right one to say that.  The only thing is I have probably one of the best results ever probably in this kind of surfaces, and for me is great.
For me is a real emotional day, win another time here.  Sure, the seventh is important because I am the player who has more today, but like I said yesterday:  that’s after.  For me, the important thing is win Roland Garros even if it’s the first, second, third, or seventh, no?  That’s what makes me very happy, very happy the way that I played today, because I played much more aggressive.
In my opinion, I started very well yesterday the first three games, played fantastic levels.  But later, after that, I felt that I didn’t play fantastic yesterday after that first games, no?
I felt that today this set I played better than yesterday.  My serve especially worked very well, and my forehand, my movements, were more aggressive.

Q.  You say that you enjoy winning every title, but the emotions, when you went up to be with your family in the player’s box, they seemed very strong this time, maybe even stronger than normal.  Was it not that way?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, was that way, sure.  Was important victory for me.  I really spend a really hard day since yesterday.  You know, I am playing this match since Friday afternoon, so is a long time preparing the match.  Yesterday with all the stops and today, I really felt tired and nervous before the match.
My feeling was I wasn’t ready for the match one hour ago, two hours ago, two hours before the match, and I felt ready to go on court three minutes before.  That’s the first moment since we stop the match yesterday ‑‑ the first moment that I really felt that I am here to play and I feel confident to try was three minutes before go on court, because for the rest of the time I was a little bit too nervous, more nervous than usual probably for the situation.

Q.  Djokovic lost with you making a double fault on match point in Rome.  Then double fault on break point at 3‑All.
RAFAEL NADAL:  In three of them.

Q.  Three of them.  And then one in first game of the second set and match point today.  Do you think something change in his attitude that last year when he was invincible it would never have happened, or do you face him like he’s a little bit more tense than he was, for instance, last year or not?  Do you have a feeling that he’s changed or not?
RAFAEL NADAL:  The things are like this, you know.  You cannot expect to save all the moments fantastic well.  You cannot expect to be in every tournament playing at your best and saving the important moments with fantastic shots.
Seriously, if I say something wrong about Novak probably gonna be a big mistake, because don’t forget that he won in Australia, he won in Miami, played semifinals in Indian Wells losing 7‑6 in the third, playing final in Monte‑Carlo and final in Rome and final here.
So his season has been great, and the double faults, that’s only coincidence, in my opinion.  Don’t forget that last year he saved unbelievable match in the semifinals of US Open.  This year he saved two unbelievable matches at semifinals of Australian Open and final of Australian Open.
In this tournament he saved two sets down against Seppi.  He saved four match points against Tsonga.  You cannot expect save all the time like this, playing great like he did in the match points against Tsonga.
He’s doing fantastic, but is impossible for anyone play every time perfect.

Q.  Last year this time you won here, and then you didn’t win another title.  Do you think your level is higher now than it was a year ago, and will you be able to carry it over to other surfaces especially with success this time against Novak?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I won four titles already this year in my favorite court.  That’s clay.  I don’t have that chance to play in my favorite court the rest of the season.  That’s the thing.  No, no, no.  That’s the calendar.  The calendar says we only have this period of time on clay, and I don’t have more chances to play on clay.
Don’t forget that I play the last five Grand Slam finals in a row.  That’s not a victory, that’s not a title, but that’s fantastic results.
I don’t remember last year, but after here I played ‑‑ I played very bad in probably Montreal/Cincinnati.  Yes, I played a great US Open, and I played probably bad in Shanghai and in the end of the season in the World Tour Finals, but in the Davis Cup final I played great another time.
You have to find your moments, like I said.  With Novak I say the same to me.  Is not possible to be perfect every time, be 100% in every tournament.  And I gonna try to keep having chances to win, produce chances to win.  I produced a lot of chances to win last year, but I lost almost every one.
Hopefully I will keep playing well, and I will keep having chances to win and try to win.

Q.  I’m from Germany, and the German fans are a bit worried you might not go to Halle now.  Can you say if you decided yet?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Yeah, I decided few months ago that tomorrow I will be there, and I will be practicing tomorrow afternoon there.  We play doubles on Wednesday and singles on Thursday if no one injury comes this night.  (Laughter.)
Q.        At the age you were last week, Bjørn Borg decided he didn’t want to play tennis anymore.  The way you feel right now, how many years do you think we have left of you?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I really don’t know how many more years I will be here playing.  Is impossible to predict the future, no?  I will be here until my physical respect me, until the injuries, you know, respect my chances to keep playing and until my mind stays with motivation, with passion for what I am doing.  Hopefully for a long time.  I don’t know.
That’s what I will try, and that’s my goal.  I work hard every day.  I wake up every day with enough motivation to go to practice and to keep improving.
When that change more days than usual, probably will be the time to say, Good‑bye, Guys, and see you in a lot of things.
That’s not the case today, I hope (laughter.)
Q.        You’re always very humble, but if I could ask you to brag a little bit, what would you point to as an explanation for why you have been so successful on clay, and particularly on here, so much better than everyone else?
RAFAEL NADAL:  In my opinion, not particularly here.  On clay, in general, yes, because I didn’t win more titles here than in Monte‑Carlo or Barcelona, won more than Rome, yes.
But in general, all the tournaments that I played on clay I had a good success the last eight years.  I don’t know.  I think I worked hard all my life.  I think my game naturally adapts very well to this surface.  My movements are probably the right ones to play here, and my natural shot probably is the right one to play on clay, the normal conditions, no?
So then probably my mental part probably on clay is one of the most important things, especially on clay, more than in the rest of the surfaces, because you have to run, you have to suffer sometimes, you have to play with more tactics, because you have more time to think, to do things.
Probably the reason is because I always was scared to lose.  That’s why I go on court every day against other opponent with the full respect, knowing that you can lose and you can win.
Then I think I was very focused for the last eight years, because winning as much as I did in this surface the last eight years is not because I played great every time.  Is impossible to play great every time.  Because when I played so‑so, I was there mentally.  The mental part was there 100%, so probably that’s why the reason.
THE MODERATOR:  Spanish questions, please.

Q.  Congratulations, Rafa.  So apart from this magic number, seven, after all these years when you were fighting hard, you managed to get the support from the crowd.  Did you learn French?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, I spent quite a lot of time in France, and I understand French very well when people speak it slowly.  And don’t forget that the French language is very close to Catalan language, so this is probably the reason why I tried.
Maybe I made a lot of mistakes, but I tried and people understood me, I think.  And the most important is that the crowd was great.  They supported me.  I want to thank the crowd, because it’s a fantastic feeling.  The crowd was really supporting me, and that’s also why I want to make efforts and speak French.

Q.  I’d like to know if you think that this final today was the most difficult final in the seven you played here because you were playing against No. 1, because the conditions were appalling, and because the match was stopped.
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, I had already played against the No. 1 on quite a few occasions, and Federer was No. 1 for several years.  So this is not the reason.
It was very difficult because ‑‑ well, I think we need to analyze this match a bit more and analyze all the others, but this was a very complex final except for the last two sets.
I had lost three Grand Slam finals in a row to him.  That’s why it was important for me to win, and this is why I was a bit more nervous and there was a lot of emotions.
But the result was important for me, just as important as my final against Federer in 2006 or against Puerta.  But when I played Puerta, I had three set points, which was not the case here.
In 2010 it was difficult, but I didn’t suffer too much.  I was quite focused.  Last year was a difficult match with a lot of emotion.  I had had a few losses before.  Actually, this year I had won three finals on clay before, which gave me a lot of self‑confidence.
Of course I have great respect for the No. 1 on the other side of the court, but as I say, these are great moments, and in an athlete’s career, you need and remember those moments.
I feel better than last year.  Things change.  We all have ups and downs, but at the end of the day we were very close during that final.

Q.  As compared to the previous years, what is the salient point from this final?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, from a tennis standpoint, be realistic.  In 2010 I had won the final without losing any set, as in 2008.
This year I played better than in 2010, and this year, all along the tournament, if you take everything into consideration, I qualified for the final without losing any set.  I just had a tiebreaker against Almagro.
As for the rest, I had won quite easily to David, Monaco, Almagro, and when you play that well, means that you’re in great shape.  That’s a fact.
Then, for the final, I was obviously a bit more nervous than usual.  I started playing very well in the beginning, 3‑Love, 30‑Love.  I made a mistake.  Then the set became more complicated.  Then my game was no longer as clean as it used to be.  I made a few mistakes.
I think the three first games yesterday were my best level, and today when we resumed, I was slightly more aggressive with my forehand and I moved well on the court.  I was more aggressive.
I don’t like talking about the tournament.  I like to talk about the clay season.  But I can’t deny that this was probably my best season on clay.  I won three tournaments, and I managed to make it to the final of the fourth tournament before I lost my first set.
So Rome, Monte‑Carlo.  You all know it’s not easy to achieve such result without losing one set.
So of course I’m very happy.

Q.  I wanted to ask you a question.  This awards ceremony in Paris is quite special with the National Anthem being played.  It’s quite special.  What do you feel?  You were probably feeling great emotions.  What came to your mind at that moment?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, as I said before, there was a lot of emotion.  There is always in such moments.  You don’t know if you will ever win another victory.  You don’t know if this year is going to be the last one.
I achieved it this year, but as time goes by, you give more value to those very precious moments.  When you play at a very high level with such beautiful seasons ‑‑ look at what happened last year, for instance.  I lost three Grand Slam finals in a row.  And you realize that you’re about to win, as in the US Open, and I felt I could win the match and I didn’t.
In Australia I was pleased with the tennis I played, yet I was a bit disappointed, as well, because I had the opportunity of winning.  I have four opportunities in a year, and you can’t expect to play your best tennis all the time.  And to win a Grand Slam, you have to play your best tennis.
There are very few opportunities, so you have to make the most.  If I had lost a fourth final, this would have been very difficult for me.  So I felt it really was worth it giving my best, given everything I have achieved since the beginning of the season or even since the beginning of my career.
When you lose, it’s because you don’t deserve the title.  So in my mind, this was the final I had to win.  This is why there was a lot of emotion.

Q.  I remember during the US Open when you said, I know what I have to do.  Now that you’ve won all those titles here in Paris, what kind of feelings do you have, or will you start feeling something in a few hours’ time?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Of course I’m very happy.  I want to think my Uncle Toni, my family, my friends, all the people who supported me.  After the US Open when I said, I know what I have to do to win, of course I know.  Now the question is:  Am I capable of doing that?  There is theory and there is what you do.  So I just wanted to give a bit of context to that sentence.
In Australia I was not in a very good shape, mentally speaking.  I could have won, but for mental reasons, as I had lost, I was probably not in the best mental status.  Now I’m here, I made it, I did everything I could to win this match.  For me, it’s great emotion.
Maybe at the beginning of the year you start thinking, okay, what’s the tournament I really want to win and I want to start playing in a very good shape?  Well, for me, it’s this one.
I also know that my season is going to be good moving on, because I’m in great shape, but I’m very pragmatic, and I need to prepare for the others.

Q.  Did you sleep well last night or did you see the match in your head or did you watch the soccer team?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Yes, I watched the soccer match in the locker room.  I didn’t see it when Italy scored a goal, but I didn’t want to watch my match nor read any articles or anything, so I looked at TV, the news a bit, and the football game.
Then I watched a series, and strangely enough, I had no movie to watch.  So I went to bed at midnight.  Then I looked at chapters of Sengoku and that was it, because I had no movies.  So I read a few chapters of my favorite comic book.  I read those three times, and I fell asleep.


courtesy: http://freedomtennis.wordpress.com/


Nadal's Press transcript after winning his 7th French Open title!

Nadal's Press transcript after winning his 7th French Open title!


Rafael Nadal Interview Transcript!
Q.  Two very small questions.  First, when you were sitting down, everybody was taking your photo.  You picked up the trophy, and you were looking at the names on the trophy, counting them.  Whose names were you looking at, yours or someone else’s?
RAFAEL NADAL:  No, I was looking at the winners.  No, no, no, no.  For me is very small, and I wasn’t counting.  I just go year by year.
Q.  Downstairs your Uncle Toni was telling us that he thinks that you are unlucky to be playing in this era of Djokovic, Federer, you.  Is that how you see it?  Do you think you’re unlucky to be in such a fabulous era for tennis?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I feel very lucky to achieve all what I achieved until today.  I have great rivals, but, you know, even if it’s good era of tennis, playing against fantastic players, no, I’m more than happy to enjoy matches like I had.  I enjoyed a lot the final of Australia, today.  I suffered, but I enjoyed.
A lot of important finals for me, a lot of important matches that I was able to enjoy against fantastic players like Novak, like Federer, like Andy.
For me, you can feel unlucky or lucky, both.

Q.  Congratulations, Rafa.  You had a hard two‑part final.  Since last night, how did you prepare technically, physically, morally?  Analyze the situation where you lost eight games in a row on clay, which is very unusual.  How did you handle it this morning?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Yeah, the conditions were really unusual, too.  No, the ball was heavier than ever.  At the end, the bounces start to be bad last half an hour of match yesterday.
In my opinion, the conditions were much more favorable for Novak than for me.  At the same time, I am playing against the best of the world, the best of the world with good conditions probably for him.  He played, in my opinion, fantastic that eight games in a row.
He didn’t have mistakes.  He return fantastically well, and he did probably everything very well in that part of the match.
That’s true that I lost meters behind the baseline.  I really felt that I wasn’t able to push him back like I did, especially at the beginning of the match and then for moments.
He was able to push me back almost all the time.  I felt that I was in a completely, you know, negative positions almost every time on that period of match.
So, for me, the last game was very important after eight games in a row, losing the last one and before the stop.  That game that put the 2‑1 on the score was very, very important.

Q.  Congratulations.  Were you happy that the match was stopped last night?  Was it easy for you to sleep last night?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Seriously, I was very nervous during all the night.  I was a little bit anxious to play what remain of the match.  But even if was clearly good thing for me, I stop the match yesterday, because with that conditions, well, seriously, the last couple of games, the conditions of the court was not the right ones to play a final of a Grand Slam, you know.  We had to stop.
Anyway, I felt that was a positive stop for me.  I really felt that the stop against David Ferrer in the semifinals with set and 4‑1 was not positive for me.  At the end was positive for me.  And the stop before that we come back to the court that with 6‑4, 5‑3, I felt that was not positive for me, too, neither.
That’s true.  The last stop was important for me, especially because the conditions of play was not the normal ones in this court.

Q.  Congratulations.  You’ve won this title seven times.  Can you talk about that?  Novak said you’re definitely the best male player to ever play on this surface.  Can you address that?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, thanks for the words, what Novak said.
I don’t know if I am the best or not.  I really ‑‑ I am not the right one to say that.  The only thing is I have probably one of the best results ever probably in this kind of surfaces, and for me is great.
For me is a real emotional day, win another time here.  Sure, the seventh is important because I am the player who has more today, but like I said yesterday:  that’s after.  For me, the important thing is win Roland Garros even if it’s the first, second, third, or seventh, no?  That’s what makes me very happy, very happy the way that I played today, because I played much more aggressive.
In my opinion, I started very well yesterday the first three games, played fantastic levels.  But later, after that, I felt that I didn’t play fantastic yesterday after that first games, no?
I felt that today this set I played better than yesterday.  My serve especially worked very well, and my forehand, my movements, were more aggressive.

Q.  You say that you enjoy winning every title, but the emotions, when you went up to be with your family in the player’s box, they seemed very strong this time, maybe even stronger than normal.  Was it not that way?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, was that way, sure.  Was important victory for me.  I really spend a really hard day since yesterday.  You know, I am playing this match since Friday afternoon, so is a long time preparing the match.  Yesterday with all the stops and today, I really felt tired and nervous before the match.
My feeling was I wasn’t ready for the match one hour ago, two hours ago, two hours before the match, and I felt ready to go on court three minutes before.  That’s the first moment since we stop the match yesterday ‑‑ the first moment that I really felt that I am here to play and I feel confident to try was three minutes before go on court, because for the rest of the time I was a little bit too nervous, more nervous than usual probably for the situation.

Q.  Djokovic lost with you making a double fault on match point in Rome.  Then double fault on break point at 3‑All.
RAFAEL NADAL:  In three of them.

Q.  Three of them.  And then one in first game of the second set and match point today.  Do you think something change in his attitude that last year when he was invincible it would never have happened, or do you face him like he’s a little bit more tense than he was, for instance, last year or not?  Do you have a feeling that he’s changed or not?
RAFAEL NADAL:  The things are like this, you know.  You cannot expect to save all the moments fantastic well.  You cannot expect to be in every tournament playing at your best and saving the important moments with fantastic shots.
Seriously, if I say something wrong about Novak probably gonna be a big mistake, because don’t forget that he won in Australia, he won in Miami, played semifinals in Indian Wells losing 7‑6 in the third, playing final in Monte‑Carlo and final in Rome and final here.
So his season has been great, and the double faults, that’s only coincidence, in my opinion.  Don’t forget that last year he saved unbelievable match in the semifinals of US Open.  This year he saved two unbelievable matches at semifinals of Australian Open and final of Australian Open.
In this tournament he saved two sets down against Seppi.  He saved four match points against Tsonga.  You cannot expect save all the time like this, playing great like he did in the match points against Tsonga.
He’s doing fantastic, but is impossible for anyone play every time perfect.

Q.  Last year this time you won here, and then you didn’t win another title.  Do you think your level is higher now than it was a year ago, and will you be able to carry it over to other surfaces especially with success this time against Novak?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I won four titles already this year in my favorite court.  That’s clay.  I don’t have that chance to play in my favorite court the rest of the season.  That’s the thing.  No, no, no.  That’s the calendar.  The calendar says we only have this period of time on clay, and I don’t have more chances to play on clay.
Don’t forget that I play the last five Grand Slam finals in a row.  That’s not a victory, that’s not a title, but that’s fantastic results.
I don’t remember last year, but after here I played ‑‑ I played very bad in probably Montreal/Cincinnati.  Yes, I played a great US Open, and I played probably bad in Shanghai and in the end of the season in the World Tour Finals, but in the Davis Cup final I played great another time.
You have to find your moments, like I said.  With Novak I say the same to me.  Is not possible to be perfect every time, be 100% in every tournament.  And I gonna try to keep having chances to win, produce chances to win.  I produced a lot of chances to win last year, but I lost almost every one.
Hopefully I will keep playing well, and I will keep having chances to win and try to win.

Q.  I’m from Germany, and the German fans are a bit worried you might not go to Halle now.  Can you say if you decided yet?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Yeah, I decided few months ago that tomorrow I will be there, and I will be practicing tomorrow afternoon there.  We play doubles on Wednesday and singles on Thursday if no one injury comes this night.  (Laughter.)
Q.        At the age you were last week, Bjørn Borg decided he didn’t want to play tennis anymore.  The way you feel right now, how many years do you think we have left of you?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I really don’t know how many more years I will be here playing.  Is impossible to predict the future, no?  I will be here until my physical respect me, until the injuries, you know, respect my chances to keep playing and until my mind stays with motivation, with passion for what I am doing.  Hopefully for a long time.  I don’t know.
That’s what I will try, and that’s my goal.  I work hard every day.  I wake up every day with enough motivation to go to practice and to keep improving.
When that change more days than usual, probably will be the time to say, Good‑bye, Guys, and see you in a lot of things.
That’s not the case today, I hope (laughter.)
Q.        You’re always very humble, but if I could ask you to brag a little bit, what would you point to as an explanation for why you have been so successful on clay, and particularly on here, so much better than everyone else?
RAFAEL NADAL:  In my opinion, not particularly here.  On clay, in general, yes, because I didn’t win more titles here than in Monte‑Carlo or Barcelona, won more than Rome, yes.
But in general, all the tournaments that I played on clay I had a good success the last eight years.  I don’t know.  I think I worked hard all my life.  I think my game naturally adapts very well to this surface.  My movements are probably the right ones to play here, and my natural shot probably is the right one to play on clay, the normal conditions, no?
So then probably my mental part probably on clay is one of the most important things, especially on clay, more than in the rest of the surfaces, because you have to run, you have to suffer sometimes, you have to play with more tactics, because you have more time to think, to do things.
Probably the reason is because I always was scared to lose.  That’s why I go on court every day against other opponent with the full respect, knowing that you can lose and you can win.
Then I think I was very focused for the last eight years, because winning as much as I did in this surface the last eight years is not because I played great every time.  Is impossible to play great every time.  Because when I played so‑so, I was there mentally.  The mental part was there 100%, so probably that’s why the reason.
THE MODERATOR:  Spanish questions, please.

Q.  Congratulations, Rafa.  So apart from this magic number, seven, after all these years when you were fighting hard, you managed to get the support from the crowd.  Did you learn French?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, I spent quite a lot of time in France, and I understand French very well when people speak it slowly.  And don’t forget that the French language is very close to Catalan language, so this is probably the reason why I tried.
Maybe I made a lot of mistakes, but I tried and people understood me, I think.  And the most important is that the crowd was great.  They supported me.  I want to thank the crowd, because it’s a fantastic feeling.  The crowd was really supporting me, and that’s also why I want to make efforts and speak French.

Q.  I’d like to know if you think that this final today was the most difficult final in the seven you played here because you were playing against No. 1, because the conditions were appalling, and because the match was stopped.
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, I had already played against the No. 1 on quite a few occasions, and Federer was No. 1 for several years.  So this is not the reason.
It was very difficult because ‑‑ well, I think we need to analyze this match a bit more and analyze all the others, but this was a very complex final except for the last two sets.
I had lost three Grand Slam finals in a row to him.  That’s why it was important for me to win, and this is why I was a bit more nervous and there was a lot of emotions.
But the result was important for me, just as important as my final against Federer in 2006 or against Puerta.  But when I played Puerta, I had three set points, which was not the case here.
In 2010 it was difficult, but I didn’t suffer too much.  I was quite focused.  Last year was a difficult match with a lot of emotion.  I had had a few losses before.  Actually, this year I had won three finals on clay before, which gave me a lot of self‑confidence.
Of course I have great respect for the No. 1 on the other side of the court, but as I say, these are great moments, and in an athlete’s career, you need and remember those moments.
I feel better than last year.  Things change.  We all have ups and downs, but at the end of the day we were very close during that final.

Q.  As compared to the previous years, what is the salient point from this final?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, from a tennis standpoint, be realistic.  In 2010 I had won the final without losing any set, as in 2008.
This year I played better than in 2010, and this year, all along the tournament, if you take everything into consideration, I qualified for the final without losing any set.  I just had a tiebreaker against Almagro.
As for the rest, I had won quite easily to David, Monaco, Almagro, and when you play that well, means that you’re in great shape.  That’s a fact.
Then, for the final, I was obviously a bit more nervous than usual.  I started playing very well in the beginning, 3‑Love, 30‑Love.  I made a mistake.  Then the set became more complicated.  Then my game was no longer as clean as it used to be.  I made a few mistakes.
I think the three first games yesterday were my best level, and today when we resumed, I was slightly more aggressive with my forehand and I moved well on the court.  I was more aggressive.
I don’t like talking about the tournament.  I like to talk about the clay season.  But I can’t deny that this was probably my best season on clay.  I won three tournaments, and I managed to make it to the final of the fourth tournament before I lost my first set.
So Rome, Monte‑Carlo.  You all know it’s not easy to achieve such result without losing one set.
So of course I’m very happy.

Q.  I wanted to ask you a question.  This awards ceremony in Paris is quite special with the National Anthem being played.  It’s quite special.  What do you feel?  You were probably feeling great emotions.  What came to your mind at that moment?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Well, as I said before, there was a lot of emotion.  There is always in such moments.  You don’t know if you will ever win another victory.  You don’t know if this year is going to be the last one.
I achieved it this year, but as time goes by, you give more value to those very precious moments.  When you play at a very high level with such beautiful seasons ‑‑ look at what happened last year, for instance.  I lost three Grand Slam finals in a row.  And you realize that you’re about to win, as in the US Open, and I felt I could win the match and I didn’t.
In Australia I was pleased with the tennis I played, yet I was a bit disappointed, as well, because I had the opportunity of winning.  I have four opportunities in a year, and you can’t expect to play your best tennis all the time.  And to win a Grand Slam, you have to play your best tennis.
There are very few opportunities, so you have to make the most.  If I had lost a fourth final, this would have been very difficult for me.  So I felt it really was worth it giving my best, given everything I have achieved since the beginning of the season or even since the beginning of my career.
When you lose, it’s because you don’t deserve the title.  So in my mind, this was the final I had to win.  This is why there was a lot of emotion.

Q.  I remember during the US Open when you said, I know what I have to do.  Now that you’ve won all those titles here in Paris, what kind of feelings do you have, or will you start feeling something in a few hours’ time?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Of course I’m very happy.  I want to think my Uncle Toni, my family, my friends, all the people who supported me.  After the US Open when I said, I know what I have to do to win, of course I know.  Now the question is:  Am I capable of doing that?  There is theory and there is what you do.  So I just wanted to give a bit of context to that sentence.
In Australia I was not in a very good shape, mentally speaking.  I could have won, but for mental reasons, as I had lost, I was probably not in the best mental status.  Now I’m here, I made it, I did everything I could to win this match.  For me, it’s great emotion.
Maybe at the beginning of the year you start thinking, okay, what’s the tournament I really want to win and I want to start playing in a very good shape?  Well, for me, it’s this one.
I also know that my season is going to be good moving on, because I’m in great shape, but I’m very pragmatic, and I need to prepare for the others.

Q.  Did you sleep well last night or did you see the match in your head or did you watch the soccer team?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Yes, I watched the soccer match in the locker room.  I didn’t see it when Italy scored a goal, but I didn’t want to watch my match nor read any articles or anything, so I looked at TV, the news a bit, and the football game.
Then I watched a series, and strangely enough, I had no movie to watch.  So I went to bed at midnight.  Then I looked at chapters of Sengoku and that was it, because I had no movies.  So I read a few chapters of my favorite comic book.  I read those three times, and I fell asleep.


courtesy: http://freedomtennis.wordpress.com/



For Djokovic's fans!
N. DJOKOVIC/J. Tsonga 6‑1, 5‑7, 5‑7, 7‑6, 6‑1
NOVAK DJOKOVIC's Interview  Transcript(Courtesy:http://freedomtennis.wordpress.com/ )
Q.  It has been confirmed that you are going to do an exhibition match in Brazil in November.  Are you excited about it?  Have you ever come to Brazil?  Would you like if the opponent could be Guga?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, yes, it’s the first time now that I talk about it.  It’s confirmed.  I’m really excited because I never been in Brazil.
I heard all the best things about your country.  Of course, Guga is the biggest tennis legend there.  I would like to play with him.  It’s still not decided.  Even if I play with Thomaz will be great.
Just the experience of being in Brazil makes me very happy.
Q.  You actually played a little bit like Pele out there today.  On those match points, how is it you’re able to raise your game and play such astonishing tennis when it’s such a big pressure occasion?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  There is really not any rational explanation or a word that can describe what you’re supposed to do when you’re match points down or when you’re losing and you’re very close to lose the match.
It’s, I guess, trying to be mentally tough and believing in your shots.  Obviously a little bit of experience that I had playing on this level for last five, six years.  I did have some matches similar to this one when I was match points down and managing to come back.
So I don’t want to be wise now and say, Okay, I know you how to play when I’m match points down.  Because as I said, there is no explanation.  I’m just going for the shots.  I’m glad I was aggressive in these moments and, you know, it paid back for me.

Q.  It felt as if being so close to being out unlocked something in you, because you seemed to produce from then the best level that you’ve played in the tournament by the look of it.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, look, this level, this level of tennis is very mental, you know, lots of emotions.  If you’re playing top player and home favorite and you have a crowd that is supporting him incredibly so, you have to face all these things.
Physically, we are all ready, we are all fit, and we are all hitting the ball well.  But it’s a matter of, you know, just couple of points here and there will decide winner.  That was the case.
I mean, if he would win he would deserve the win, no doubt.  But, you know, that’s sport.  The one that mentally, I think, pushes more maybe in some moments and obviously gets also a bit lucky and gets the win, you know, that’s how it goes.
You know, ones you win, ones you lose, but the more important thing is to try to take the best out of these matches and enjoy them, you know, because as a tennis player, this is what you live for.  This is what you practice for all these years, you know, to be part of incredible performance, incredible match encounter here in Roland Garros, you know, with the home players.
I’m really glad that I could win today.

Q.  In today’s match, Tsonga’s level, did it kind of surprise you?  Because at some points you opened your hands in disbelief to some unbelievable shots he was doing.  Was it more the winner’s spirit than anything else?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, look, you know, for the set and a half I played great.  Jo was making a lot of unforced errors.  He wasn’t serving the way he was serving after that.
So, you know, I think I felt good on the court.  Then I played one bad service game, and that’s when the momentum changed, you know.  He got crowd on his side, big support.  He started serving whenever he was in trouble.
Break balls second, third, fourth set, he always served it out, and really big, which is not something that happened for the first time.  He tends to play always his best when ‑‑ you know, when the pressure, he comes to the net and hits the ball.  That’s why he’s one of the top players.
Yeah, it was incredible.  I mean, at some stages, even though I thought I was returning really well and I was in the point, he just went for everything.  He was playing, in my opinion, incredibly well.
But in the end, I managed to breakthrough.

Q.  Last time I guess you said just the serve was working well.  What about your performance today?  Was it any better?  Did you feel the ball better?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Yeah, yeah, I felt much better.  I really think that even though I was very close to lose this match I still played really well.  Because my opponent as well, I have to give him credit for his performance, as I said.
But we played a very good quality match, I think.

Q.  The moment when you sort of came up awkwardly after a backhand shot, looked as though perhaps you may have injured yourself.  I was wondering what exactly you did there and how worried you may have been in that very moment.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, you know, at that very moment I didn’t know what to expect and how the leg would react.  But it was the hamstring full stretch, you know, and it was a very quick, very sharp move.
So luckily for me there was no consequences.

Q.  You’ve talked many times about the experience you’ve gotten in big matches.  Could you talk a little bit about how that helps you at these moments?  Is it just knowing how to play or getting used to the emotions?  What is it?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, as I said, it’s a very small part of today’s case, you know, that experience of playing on a big stage.  It does have its own part and role of today’s win and comeback that I had, but the bigger part is just staying composed, you know, and believing in your shots, really.
I mean, Jo has equal amount of experience playing in the big matches.  He played finals of Grand Slams and he’s top 5, top 10 player for the last couple of years.  I didn’t play anyone who is unexperienced at these moments, at this stage.
I mean, as you could see, whenever he was very close in important moment he went for the shot, so that’s what I did, as well.
You know, one of us had to win.

Q.  Today was quite a match.  If I could ask you to look ahead for a moment ‑ special semifinal coming up ‑ I’m wondering, first of all, if, to you, there is a special meaning in facing Federer again here in the semifinals after last year, and what maybe sticks out in particular from last year’s match for you.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, another great semifinal.  I don’t want to talk too much about Roger.  We all know his quality and can always expect him to perform his best at this stage of the tournament.
He came back from two sets down today.  We both played tough matches in last two rounds.  Now we’re going to have two days off and expect exciting semifinal.
You know, last year we were part of a great match that went the distance, and he played incredibly well.  I thought I played on a very high level.  I just hope we can have another good match for us and for the crowd to be a part of.
I think for me it’s crucial to be very focused and aggressive from the first moment, because that’s something that you can always expect Roger to have, you know, that control over the opponent from the start.  I will try to be out there believing I can win.
Now there is no really favorite for that match.  It’s semifinals, so everything is open.




If you have any questions- You can mail me at [email protected]http://twitter.com/#!/ApekshaHA or http://on.fb.me/pouTOy 

NOVAK DJOKOVIC's Interview Transcript

NOVAK DJOKOVIC's Interview Transcript


For Djokovic's fans!
N. DJOKOVIC/J. Tsonga 6‑1, 5‑7, 5‑7, 7‑6, 6‑1
NOVAK DJOKOVIC's Interview  Transcript(Courtesy:http://freedomtennis.wordpress.com/ )
Q.  It has been confirmed that you are going to do an exhibition match in Brazil in November.  Are you excited about it?  Have you ever come to Brazil?  Would you like if the opponent could be Guga?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, yes, it’s the first time now that I talk about it.  It’s confirmed.  I’m really excited because I never been in Brazil.
I heard all the best things about your country.  Of course, Guga is the biggest tennis legend there.  I would like to play with him.  It’s still not decided.  Even if I play with Thomaz will be great.
Just the experience of being in Brazil makes me very happy.
Q.  You actually played a little bit like Pele out there today.  On those match points, how is it you’re able to raise your game and play such astonishing tennis when it’s such a big pressure occasion?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  There is really not any rational explanation or a word that can describe what you’re supposed to do when you’re match points down or when you’re losing and you’re very close to lose the match.
It’s, I guess, trying to be mentally tough and believing in your shots.  Obviously a little bit of experience that I had playing on this level for last five, six years.  I did have some matches similar to this one when I was match points down and managing to come back.
So I don’t want to be wise now and say, Okay, I know you how to play when I’m match points down.  Because as I said, there is no explanation.  I’m just going for the shots.  I’m glad I was aggressive in these moments and, you know, it paid back for me.

Q.  It felt as if being so close to being out unlocked something in you, because you seemed to produce from then the best level that you’ve played in the tournament by the look of it.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, look, this level, this level of tennis is very mental, you know, lots of emotions.  If you’re playing top player and home favorite and you have a crowd that is supporting him incredibly so, you have to face all these things.
Physically, we are all ready, we are all fit, and we are all hitting the ball well.  But it’s a matter of, you know, just couple of points here and there will decide winner.  That was the case.
I mean, if he would win he would deserve the win, no doubt.  But, you know, that’s sport.  The one that mentally, I think, pushes more maybe in some moments and obviously gets also a bit lucky and gets the win, you know, that’s how it goes.
You know, ones you win, ones you lose, but the more important thing is to try to take the best out of these matches and enjoy them, you know, because as a tennis player, this is what you live for.  This is what you practice for all these years, you know, to be part of incredible performance, incredible match encounter here in Roland Garros, you know, with the home players.
I’m really glad that I could win today.

Q.  In today’s match, Tsonga’s level, did it kind of surprise you?  Because at some points you opened your hands in disbelief to some unbelievable shots he was doing.  Was it more the winner’s spirit than anything else?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, look, you know, for the set and a half I played great.  Jo was making a lot of unforced errors.  He wasn’t serving the way he was serving after that.
So, you know, I think I felt good on the court.  Then I played one bad service game, and that’s when the momentum changed, you know.  He got crowd on his side, big support.  He started serving whenever he was in trouble.
Break balls second, third, fourth set, he always served it out, and really big, which is not something that happened for the first time.  He tends to play always his best when ‑‑ you know, when the pressure, he comes to the net and hits the ball.  That’s why he’s one of the top players.
Yeah, it was incredible.  I mean, at some stages, even though I thought I was returning really well and I was in the point, he just went for everything.  He was playing, in my opinion, incredibly well.
But in the end, I managed to breakthrough.

Q.  Last time I guess you said just the serve was working well.  What about your performance today?  Was it any better?  Did you feel the ball better?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Yeah, yeah, I felt much better.  I really think that even though I was very close to lose this match I still played really well.  Because my opponent as well, I have to give him credit for his performance, as I said.
But we played a very good quality match, I think.

Q.  The moment when you sort of came up awkwardly after a backhand shot, looked as though perhaps you may have injured yourself.  I was wondering what exactly you did there and how worried you may have been in that very moment.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, you know, at that very moment I didn’t know what to expect and how the leg would react.  But it was the hamstring full stretch, you know, and it was a very quick, very sharp move.
So luckily for me there was no consequences.

Q.  You’ve talked many times about the experience you’ve gotten in big matches.  Could you talk a little bit about how that helps you at these moments?  Is it just knowing how to play or getting used to the emotions?  What is it?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, as I said, it’s a very small part of today’s case, you know, that experience of playing on a big stage.  It does have its own part and role of today’s win and comeback that I had, but the bigger part is just staying composed, you know, and believing in your shots, really.
I mean, Jo has equal amount of experience playing in the big matches.  He played finals of Grand Slams and he’s top 5, top 10 player for the last couple of years.  I didn’t play anyone who is unexperienced at these moments, at this stage.
I mean, as you could see, whenever he was very close in important moment he went for the shot, so that’s what I did, as well.
You know, one of us had to win.

Q.  Today was quite a match.  If I could ask you to look ahead for a moment ‑ special semifinal coming up ‑ I’m wondering, first of all, if, to you, there is a special meaning in facing Federer again here in the semifinals after last year, and what maybe sticks out in particular from last year’s match for you.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, another great semifinal.  I don’t want to talk too much about Roger.  We all know his quality and can always expect him to perform his best at this stage of the tournament.
He came back from two sets down today.  We both played tough matches in last two rounds.  Now we’re going to have two days off and expect exciting semifinal.
You know, last year we were part of a great match that went the distance, and he played incredibly well.  I thought I played on a very high level.  I just hope we can have another good match for us and for the crowd to be a part of.
I think for me it’s crucial to be very focused and aggressive from the first moment, because that’s something that you can always expect Roger to have, you know, that control over the opponent from the start.  I will try to be out there believing I can win.
Now there is no really favorite for that match.  It’s semifinals, so everything is open.




If you have any questions- You can mail me at [email protected]http://twitter.com/#!/ApekshaHA or http://on.fb.me/pouTOy 

For Roger Federer fans:


R. FEDERER/J. Del Potro 3‑6, 6‑7, 6‑2, 6‑0, 6‑3


FEDERER's  Interview Transcript! (Courtesy:http://freedomtennis.wordpress.com/ )
 Q.  In the first two sets especially, I mean, it looked as if Del Potro’s resistance to your groundstroke rhythm had improved and he was playing much better than before in the groundstrokes.  Then in the rest of the match you suddenly seemed to take over.  What made the difference between the start and the end of the match?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, I mean, comparing to this year’s matches, it’s obviously the first one on clay.  Conditions are slow, particularly on clay.  That makes it hard for a lot of variation.  You don’t get any free points on the serve.
Anything that’s maybe short rallies and chips and down the line shots, it’s a better match for me.  He obviously like to go back into backhand and then rip the forehand once he gets the chance.
I thought it was very good conditions for him.  I knew it was going to be tough anyway.  I have still been struggling to find my rhythm.  I did feel it in the first set, even though he was up two sets ‑‑ two breaks.  I was finding a way back and starting to feel better.
Just trying to figure out how to play a guy who returns from so far back on a slow court.  Do you try to serve through him?  Which I tried; didn’t work.  Or do I try and move it around a bit.  And that worked a bit better, but it was really in the mix‑up that, you know, I found success.
Second set was a tough, you know, set for me to lose, but he played a really good breaker and got the better of me.  But I was happy that the first two sets took some time, because I did favor myself once the match got longer.  That’s kind of how it came.
So I’m very happy with the way I fought and started in the third set, fourth set, and even in the fifth set where obviously it was the toughest, because that was his last chance and his resistance maybe was the biggest there.
Q.  You said that you felt that as the match went on your chances would improve.  Did you feel his physical condition started to deteriorate a bit when he had the trainer on and they were looking at his knee?  How did you feel he was moving at that stage?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, I don’t know.  He called the trainer but he didn’t take a timeout.  So I didn’t know what they were talking about, if he got painkillers or what happened.  So I was just trying to focus on me, really, because I was in trouble.  He wasn’t.
Maybe his knee was, I don’t know.  But doesn’t matter how bad that knee is, maybe he can just sit on it and just say, Okay, here.  Take the two next sets.  I will wait here half hour, 45 minutes, and then I’ll come back in the fifth set and I will destroy you.
I knew it was going to be a tricky match, I knew that margins were not on my side anymore.  That’s where I just tried to keep playing tough, make him understand how far he still had to go, as well, because I had a very long way.
I was able to do all of those things, and I was very happy the way I played, you know, starting the third set.

Q.  It was a rare shout out from you at the end of the second set tiebreak.  I couldn’t quite tell what it was about.  Were you frustrated with your game or with the crowd?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I mean, look, I was pushing hard and I was trying to ‑‑ should have maybe won that second set earlier.  I’m stuck in a breaker.  Juan Martin is playing well, hitting hard, I’m in defense.
Obviously I was emotional and I was, you know, sometimes upset.  Sometimes just trying to push myself on.  Push harder and try harder and move faster, all those things, because I knew it could be crucial to the match.
Thank God it wasn’t, but in the moment itself you don’t know.  So you wait and see.

Q.  What does it feel like being two sets down in a Grand Slam?  What did you think about maybe your match against Tommy Haas here a few years ago when you returned to the game, of course, and won?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, of course I did think of the Tommy Haas match.  Of course I thought about the five‑setter I had here with Juan Martin in 2009.
Maybe I drew some inspiration off it.  But then again, completely different place, you know.  Suzanne Lenglen; it’s raining.  It’s a different situation, really.
But, you know, you just try to push further and it’s not easy, you know.  But at the same time you are happy it’s a Grand Slam, because any other tournament I would have been out of the tournament.
This way, you know, the road to victory is much longer and it’s not a sprint; it’s a marathon.  I’m happy I came through.  I feel great, you know, after the five‑setter.
So I’m obviously happy I get two days, but it’s not necessary.  Looking forward to a big semifinal.

Q.  When you’re playing Novak, how much do previous encounters go into your thinking going into the match?
ROGER FEDERER:  I mean, it’s helpful if you’ve won the last three, four, five, maybe.  Obviously it helps to win one like he did in Rome, I would think.
But then again, this is the best situation.  It’s the best‑of‑five.  It’s something we’re not ‑ I don’t want to say accustomed to anymore as much, because we did play many more best‑of‑five set matches, let’s say, seven to ten years ago when all of the finals or many of the tournaments like in Basel, for instance, Gstaad, Vienna.  You name it, they were all best‑of‑five set finals.  The Masters 1000, most of them, were best of‑five‑set finals.
So you used to play many more.  Now all of a sudden you can go six months and not play almost any five‑setter, and even three years, let’s say.
So it’s a different approach, and I think we’re both aware of that.  We’re looking forward to it.  Give us more time to find our range, and once we find our range, it’s going to be tough for the opponent.

Q.  You just said best‑of‑five you need a different approach.  Can you talk about what some of the best approaches are of best‑of‑five over best‑of‑three against him?
ROGER FEDERER:  Doesn’t matter if it’s Novak or any other player really.  You just want to be well prepared; you want to be mentally ready for a long day.
Obviously over five sets, as well, the rain or the sunshine could come and go.  You have more possibility of interruption just because you’re out there for a longer period of time.  It’s a different kind of approach.
Obviously the start to the match is important, but then again, we saw that it didn’t matter at the US Open when we played each other; it didn’t matter this time when we played; to Del Potro it didn’t matter.
So that sometimes just keeps you honest to the very, very end, and you have to play as hard as I can every single point against him and see how it goes.
THE MODERATOR:  French questions.

Q.  Can you explain the beginning of this match?  Were there any specific reasons to explain the beginning of your match?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I was just trying to find my game.  The court was very slow.  I served at 200 kilometers per hour and he returned very nicely, so it wasn’t like in Madrid.

Q.  On a scale from 0 to 10, how well did you play today?  Should you prefer to play Djokovic or Nadal?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, Rafa, I’m not playing him next time.  He’s not even qualified for the final, so I’m playing Novak.  I hope I’ll play a very good match.
I don’t know.  If my level was one for all of my previous matches, I know that I have to reach a level of 10 to play against him.  So that’s all I can say.  We’ll see.
We’ll see how fit he is.  I know I have to play a great match.

Q.  Novak saved four match points against Jo.  You probably know that.  What would you have to say about this match?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, I’m very disappointed for Jo.  I would have loved to play him here in Paris.
It’s like in Bercy.  He missed two match points against Isner; he missed four here.  I have a feeling that the crowd would have loved to see such a match.  For him, it’s a disappointment.
As for me, it’s nothing different as from last year.  I’m playing Djokovic in the semifinal.

Q.  During the two first sets, you were trying to find your tennis.  Could you say that you found it during the two last sets?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I won’t say that.  Everybody said the same thing about Gasquet when he had 6‑Love, 6‑Love and then lost to Murray.
But anyway, I’m very happy I managed to go through to the semifinals.

Q.  This was a complicated match, but do you think you can raise your level to defeat Djokovic as you did last year?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yes.  What else can I say?

Q.  A question from your fans, which is not much to do with the match:  You were born very close to the French/Swiss border.  Are you certain you were born in Switzerland?
ROGER FEDERER:  I think yes.  I can’t remember because I was very small, very little when it happened.  (Laughter.)
But my mother told me it was in Basel, so it was on the Swiss side and not on the French side.  But if you want confirmation, ask my mother.  She knows everything about it.

Q.  You lost to Tsonga in five sets in Wimbledon.  You also lost to Djokovic in five sets.  Would this victory in five sets confirm that you can win a match in five sets?
ROGER FEDERER:  I know I can win a match in five sets.  I should have, I could have, against Jo or Novak.  It was so close against Novak.  Afterwards it’s normal to have regrets.
No, I’m not asking myself that kind of question.  I’m fit.  I have no physical problems, which was different three, five weeks ago.  I’m very happy.  I’m in good shape.  That’s it.  I’m fine.
It’s always good to come back from two sets to zero.  You don’t always play matches in five sets, and that was the one I had to win.

Q.  This is your 31st semifinals in a Grand Slam, like Jimmy Connors.  Do these figures still matter to you?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, yes, a bit.  It’s an inspiration for an athlete, for a tennis player.  I find inspiration from great matches, from other players.  I find inspiration in records.
I need many different things:  Fans, tournaments, traveling.  I need many things to push me to accomplish even more.  So when I break a record like this one, it’s phenomenal and I like it.

Q.  We’ve seen you asking for different balls when it’s raining like this.  Are you trying to get the driest possible balls?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, we players, we no longer have time to choose the balls.  I try and do that very quickly, and I think about the situation in the tiebreak.
Well, the ball boy would roll the ball behind you, and I just wanted to see how we would stop it.  I did this four times.  I was a bit stern, but the ball boys are very good.  I just wanted to see if he could catch it, and they did each time.
I needed this to relax mentally for 10 seconds.  I didn’t want not to be nice to the ball boy





If you have any questions- You can mail me at [email protected]http://twitter.com/#!/ApekshaHA or http://on.fb.me/pouTOy 
FEDERER's  Interview Transcript!

FEDERER's Interview Transcript!

For Roger Federer fans:


R. FEDERER/J. Del Potro 3‑6, 6‑7, 6‑2, 6‑0, 6‑3


FEDERER's  Interview Transcript! (Courtesy:http://freedomtennis.wordpress.com/ )
 Q.  In the first two sets especially, I mean, it looked as if Del Potro’s resistance to your groundstroke rhythm had improved and he was playing much better than before in the groundstrokes.  Then in the rest of the match you suddenly seemed to take over.  What made the difference between the start and the end of the match?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, I mean, comparing to this year’s matches, it’s obviously the first one on clay.  Conditions are slow, particularly on clay.  That makes it hard for a lot of variation.  You don’t get any free points on the serve.
Anything that’s maybe short rallies and chips and down the line shots, it’s a better match for me.  He obviously like to go back into backhand and then rip the forehand once he gets the chance.
I thought it was very good conditions for him.  I knew it was going to be tough anyway.  I have still been struggling to find my rhythm.  I did feel it in the first set, even though he was up two sets ‑‑ two breaks.  I was finding a way back and starting to feel better.
Just trying to figure out how to play a guy who returns from so far back on a slow court.  Do you try to serve through him?  Which I tried; didn’t work.  Or do I try and move it around a bit.  And that worked a bit better, but it was really in the mix‑up that, you know, I found success.
Second set was a tough, you know, set for me to lose, but he played a really good breaker and got the better of me.  But I was happy that the first two sets took some time, because I did favor myself once the match got longer.  That’s kind of how it came.
So I’m very happy with the way I fought and started in the third set, fourth set, and even in the fifth set where obviously it was the toughest, because that was his last chance and his resistance maybe was the biggest there.
Q.  You said that you felt that as the match went on your chances would improve.  Did you feel his physical condition started to deteriorate a bit when he had the trainer on and they were looking at his knee?  How did you feel he was moving at that stage?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, I don’t know.  He called the trainer but he didn’t take a timeout.  So I didn’t know what they were talking about, if he got painkillers or what happened.  So I was just trying to focus on me, really, because I was in trouble.  He wasn’t.
Maybe his knee was, I don’t know.  But doesn’t matter how bad that knee is, maybe he can just sit on it and just say, Okay, here.  Take the two next sets.  I will wait here half hour, 45 minutes, and then I’ll come back in the fifth set and I will destroy you.
I knew it was going to be a tricky match, I knew that margins were not on my side anymore.  That’s where I just tried to keep playing tough, make him understand how far he still had to go, as well, because I had a very long way.
I was able to do all of those things, and I was very happy the way I played, you know, starting the third set.

Q.  It was a rare shout out from you at the end of the second set tiebreak.  I couldn’t quite tell what it was about.  Were you frustrated with your game or with the crowd?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I mean, look, I was pushing hard and I was trying to ‑‑ should have maybe won that second set earlier.  I’m stuck in a breaker.  Juan Martin is playing well, hitting hard, I’m in defense.
Obviously I was emotional and I was, you know, sometimes upset.  Sometimes just trying to push myself on.  Push harder and try harder and move faster, all those things, because I knew it could be crucial to the match.
Thank God it wasn’t, but in the moment itself you don’t know.  So you wait and see.

Q.  What does it feel like being two sets down in a Grand Slam?  What did you think about maybe your match against Tommy Haas here a few years ago when you returned to the game, of course, and won?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, of course I did think of the Tommy Haas match.  Of course I thought about the five‑setter I had here with Juan Martin in 2009.
Maybe I drew some inspiration off it.  But then again, completely different place, you know.  Suzanne Lenglen; it’s raining.  It’s a different situation, really.
But, you know, you just try to push further and it’s not easy, you know.  But at the same time you are happy it’s a Grand Slam, because any other tournament I would have been out of the tournament.
This way, you know, the road to victory is much longer and it’s not a sprint; it’s a marathon.  I’m happy I came through.  I feel great, you know, after the five‑setter.
So I’m obviously happy I get two days, but it’s not necessary.  Looking forward to a big semifinal.

Q.  When you’re playing Novak, how much do previous encounters go into your thinking going into the match?
ROGER FEDERER:  I mean, it’s helpful if you’ve won the last three, four, five, maybe.  Obviously it helps to win one like he did in Rome, I would think.
But then again, this is the best situation.  It’s the best‑of‑five.  It’s something we’re not ‑ I don’t want to say accustomed to anymore as much, because we did play many more best‑of‑five set matches, let’s say, seven to ten years ago when all of the finals or many of the tournaments like in Basel, for instance, Gstaad, Vienna.  You name it, they were all best‑of‑five set finals.  The Masters 1000, most of them, were best of‑five‑set finals.
So you used to play many more.  Now all of a sudden you can go six months and not play almost any five‑setter, and even three years, let’s say.
So it’s a different approach, and I think we’re both aware of that.  We’re looking forward to it.  Give us more time to find our range, and once we find our range, it’s going to be tough for the opponent.

Q.  You just said best‑of‑five you need a different approach.  Can you talk about what some of the best approaches are of best‑of‑five over best‑of‑three against him?
ROGER FEDERER:  Doesn’t matter if it’s Novak or any other player really.  You just want to be well prepared; you want to be mentally ready for a long day.
Obviously over five sets, as well, the rain or the sunshine could come and go.  You have more possibility of interruption just because you’re out there for a longer period of time.  It’s a different kind of approach.
Obviously the start to the match is important, but then again, we saw that it didn’t matter at the US Open when we played each other; it didn’t matter this time when we played; to Del Potro it didn’t matter.
So that sometimes just keeps you honest to the very, very end, and you have to play as hard as I can every single point against him and see how it goes.
THE MODERATOR:  French questions.

Q.  Can you explain the beginning of this match?  Were there any specific reasons to explain the beginning of your match?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I was just trying to find my game.  The court was very slow.  I served at 200 kilometers per hour and he returned very nicely, so it wasn’t like in Madrid.

Q.  On a scale from 0 to 10, how well did you play today?  Should you prefer to play Djokovic or Nadal?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, Rafa, I’m not playing him next time.  He’s not even qualified for the final, so I’m playing Novak.  I hope I’ll play a very good match.
I don’t know.  If my level was one for all of my previous matches, I know that I have to reach a level of 10 to play against him.  So that’s all I can say.  We’ll see.
We’ll see how fit he is.  I know I have to play a great match.

Q.  Novak saved four match points against Jo.  You probably know that.  What would you have to say about this match?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, I’m very disappointed for Jo.  I would have loved to play him here in Paris.
It’s like in Bercy.  He missed two match points against Isner; he missed four here.  I have a feeling that the crowd would have loved to see such a match.  For him, it’s a disappointment.
As for me, it’s nothing different as from last year.  I’m playing Djokovic in the semifinal.

Q.  During the two first sets, you were trying to find your tennis.  Could you say that you found it during the two last sets?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I won’t say that.  Everybody said the same thing about Gasquet when he had 6‑Love, 6‑Love and then lost to Murray.
But anyway, I’m very happy I managed to go through to the semifinals.

Q.  This was a complicated match, but do you think you can raise your level to defeat Djokovic as you did last year?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yes.  What else can I say?

Q.  A question from your fans, which is not much to do with the match:  You were born very close to the French/Swiss border.  Are you certain you were born in Switzerland?
ROGER FEDERER:  I think yes.  I can’t remember because I was very small, very little when it happened.  (Laughter.)
But my mother told me it was in Basel, so it was on the Swiss side and not on the French side.  But if you want confirmation, ask my mother.  She knows everything about it.

Q.  You lost to Tsonga in five sets in Wimbledon.  You also lost to Djokovic in five sets.  Would this victory in five sets confirm that you can win a match in five sets?
ROGER FEDERER:  I know I can win a match in five sets.  I should have, I could have, against Jo or Novak.  It was so close against Novak.  Afterwards it’s normal to have regrets.
No, I’m not asking myself that kind of question.  I’m fit.  I have no physical problems, which was different three, five weeks ago.  I’m very happy.  I’m in good shape.  That’s it.  I’m fine.
It’s always good to come back from two sets to zero.  You don’t always play matches in five sets, and that was the one I had to win.

Q.  This is your 31st semifinals in a Grand Slam, like Jimmy Connors.  Do these figures still matter to you?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, yes, a bit.  It’s an inspiration for an athlete, for a tennis player.  I find inspiration from great matches, from other players.  I find inspiration in records.
I need many different things:  Fans, tournaments, traveling.  I need many things to push me to accomplish even more.  So when I break a record like this one, it’s phenomenal and I like it.

Q.  We’ve seen you asking for different balls when it’s raining like this.  Are you trying to get the driest possible balls?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, we players, we no longer have time to choose the balls.  I try and do that very quickly, and I think about the situation in the tiebreak.
Well, the ball boy would roll the ball behind you, and I just wanted to see how we would stop it.  I did this four times.  I was a bit stern, but the ball boys are very good.  I just wanted to see if he could catch it, and they did each time.
I needed this to relax mentally for 10 seconds.  I didn’t want not to be nice to the ball boy





If you have any questions- You can mail me at [email protected]http://twitter.com/#!/ApekshaHA or http://on.fb.me/pouTOy