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Écrit par Jerome   
19-09-2006

1998 REPUBLIC NATIONAL MONTE CARLO OPEN

MONTE CARLO, MONACO

 

April 22, 1998

 

P. SAMPRAS/A. Agassi

6-4, 7-5

 

An interview with:

 

ANDRE AGASSI

 

Q. What's the big difference between this match and the one against Martin?

ANDRE AGASSI: I was a little indecisive with my shots, a little more tentative than I should have been. Then once I get a little tentative, I don't move as well. It was downhill from there.

 

Q. Were you nervous on the court, Andre?

ANDRE AGASSI: No.

 

Q. There's been a bit of a debate about whether Pete's little slump this year is a start of a longer term thing or just a temporary blip. From where you were standing today, what would you say about that?

ANDRE AGASSI: Well, unfortunately, I didn't make him have to play better, so it's tough to tell. It's his first match on clay. It's not his best surface. For him to pull it out, you know, is going to take some hard work and some good wins throughout the tournament. I've seen him play better than today.

 

Q. If it was not the nerves, what made you tentative? Was it thinking too much yourself?

ANDRE AGASSI: It was just trying to get the feel of a few points. I just should have pulled the trigger early. I was trying to work myself into the match. Felt like at the crucial times, I didn't step it up. To beat Pete, even though he's not maybe playing his best, requires you to play aggressively, you know, at the right times. But when I got up in each set, I didn't get more aggressive; I just, you know, made some errors, then didn't finish the point when I had a chance.

 

Q. Andre, not to read too much into it, couple different times, you kind of let yourself get distracted by a ball kid moving on big points. Seems like that almost sent you down on the slope. Did that bother you a lot?

ANDRE AGASSI: It was the ball kid's fault. No. I like it when everybody finds their position out there. When a ball kid runs to the back and he's supposed to be at net, takes me a second to just go, "Okay, everybody's still, everybody's in place, let's play."

 

Q. Didn't break your concentration in a big way?

ANDRE AGASSI: For a split second. No, nothing I'm not used to.

 

Q. How much do you think it could affect your confidence, this match?

ANDRE AGASSI: Well, it could be better, you know, to play really well today and win. But, you know, I've just got to, you know, learn from it, you know, get better. Ideally, you want to use these tournaments to get ready for the French Open. It's important to make sure you improve from it, not go backwards. I don't think that will be too much of a problem. I'll learn from it.

 

Q. How would you compare the level of intensity on the court today with other matches you played against him in the past?

ANDRE AGASSI: Well, I mean, it was competitive, you know. When the matches get closer, the intensity gets more. Had we gone to a third set, I think the third set you would have seen some real good tennis. I felt like at some crucial points of the match, I let it slip away a little bit. That always tends to bring down the intensity.

 

Q. Are you going to stay a few more days in Monte-Carlo, practice, in order to play better in Munich?

ANDRE AGASSI: I'm playing doubles here.

 

Q. But you are not expecting to go back to the States, coming back to play Munich?

ANDRE AGASSI: I'm playing doubles. I have to play doubles with Petr Korda.

 

Q. Before the French Open, do you think you are going to play also in Rome?

ANDRE AGASSI: I don't know yet. I have a wildcard. I have to wait to see.

 

Q. What can you most improve between now and the French? What do you need to work on, most importantly?

ANDRE AGASSI: My shots are there. I just have to bring it out. I feel like today I waited too long for the right ball, and I didn't seize it when it was there. A couple times the ball was short, and I could have stepped up and hit it, but I kind of waited, then just tried to hit an offensive ball, not a big shot. You know, my game is to play decisively. I didn't quite do that. Part of was keeping it in play because he was a little bit not playing as well as he normally does. Then when I did decide to pull the trigger, it was a split second too late. If I commit to more aggressive, I find that I play even more consistently.

 

Q. Do you see this then as a hiccup rather than a real setback?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah. I mean, it's not a setback. I certainly have to make the adjustment for how I felt things went out there. You know, you can't expect to win every match, especially against guys who know how to win big matches. If every loss was a setback, then you're going to have a dozen setbacks a year if you play a good year. That's not reasonable. I've just got to learn from it. Shouldn't be a problem.

 

Q. But you have to weigh it against the quality of the player you're playing?

ANDRE AGASSI: Exactly. Regardless if Pete plays well or not, he knows how to play well at the right points. He certainly did today.

 
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