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Écrit par Jerome   
20-09-2006

2005 ROGERS MASTERS
MONTREAL, QUEBEC

August 8, 2005

A. AGASSI/A. Martin
6-4, 6-2

ANDRE AGASSI

THE MODERATOR: Ladies and Gentlemen, Andre Agassi. Questions, please.

Q. The injection seems to have worked.

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, it felt pretty good. Physically, last week in LA I was feeling good, but it did increasingly get worse. I felt like I was being proactive getting the injection, hoping it gets me through the summer. I hope it does.

Q. Were you pleased with the way you moved, the way you hit the ball?

ANDRE AGASSI: I was pleased with the way it improved over the course of the match. By the end of the match, I was much more comfortable. But I was a little nervous in the beginning and the ball was really flying. I was trying to go after the ball so it didn't play me, but I wasn't quite committed to letting my swing go, so I was sort of moving forward and not finishing my swing, and I was losing control of a few shots. But by the end, I started finding my swing again and felt pretty good.

Q. Why were you nervous?

ANDRE AGASSI: 10,000 people, 12,000 people.

Q. That seems like it would be old hat for someone like you.

ANDRE AGASSI: No, it's never old when people are taking a day of their lives to come watch you.

Q. But at the end, did you start to enjoy that?

ANDRE AGASSI: No, I enjoyed it the whole time. I just didn't quite relax in my game early on. You know, it's much different playing this surface than LA or Washington or a few of the others. The balls are different. The courts different. It's quicker. You got to find your comfort zone, you know, which ball you need to go after, which ball you need to lay off. I got a little bit more comfortable with that as the match went on.

Q. Every time we see you play, it seems like you never age. How different is your game now in this year's tournament compared to when you won back in 1995?

ANDRE AGASSI: I think fundamentally it's similar. Probably a little stronger now, which you need to be to deal with the pace and athleticism of some of these guys. But I don't know. I mean, it's so hard to be objective. You know, as a professional, you're asked to go out there every day and prove to your opponent that you're worthy of the victory. A lot of the faces have changed over the years, but I'm still trying to do that. That's all I have the ability to do, is assess my opponent. I mean, myself, I don't know. I couldn't tell you.

Q. Are you getting such rousing ovations wherever you go these days? This crowd was full tonight and seemed to be very supportive. After the match, quite an ovation. Do you get that everywhere now?

ANDRE AGASSI: I don't know if I get that, because that was pretty special tonight. Their enthusiasm, excitement for the game and support of me was quite special. But, yeah, I have received more love than I did, you know, 20 years ago for sure. Every place I go to, it feels like it's a relationship that's just grown another year. It's a two-way street. It's as important to me to go out there and to be able to give something to them, and they give a lot to me certainly.

Q. When you were coming up, do you remember Connors going out the last couple years of his career? It seemed like the fans took to him the same way that they might not have earlier in his career.

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, I didn't necessarily know the spectrum of his career as far as what he went through support-wise or what have you. But, yeah, I played him a couple of times in The Open, the quarters of The Open. I certainly was on the other end of that.

Q. In any way, do you appreciate the wins more at all at this stage of your career?

ANDRE AGASSI: No question. I think the harder any test gets, the more rewarded you feel for finding a way. I think that's the case for me here. I don't take any one for granted. I mean, I have a lot of weaknesses in my life, but underestimating my opponent is not one of them. To get out there tonight and to not be as comfortable but to find a way to settle in, it was a great feeling.

Q. Can I ask at what point did you feel comfortable out there?

ANDRE AGASSI: I think the second set. Once the first set was over with, first game of the second, just a few very routine rally shots. I let go and felt like it was a quality strike, enough to keep the advantage in the point, but no chance of making an error. I felt very settled with, "Okay, there's the swing I'm looking for." Then I was able to relax even more on my serve knowing he had to do something pretty special, or else I was going to hit a good ball. I'd say right early in the second.

Q. With your play now, how do you rate your chances in this tournament?

ANDRE AGASSI: I don't know. I mean, you look at the draw and there's not a match out there that is easy. I mean, I could go through the whole draw with 20 years of experience and be lucky if I picked 50% of these matches as far as the winner goes. I mean, we saw it today with Henman and Hrbaty. Might see more of it tomorrow. The best ones can learn. I certainly approach each match with a great deal of respect.

Q. Has the way you're training changed than when you first started playing tennis?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah. It went from nonexistent to every day.

Q. The techniques and the muscles, has that changed?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, I think everything evolves. I think you get to know yourself better. You get to understand your game better. You get to know what you want to focus on. You know what makes you feel your best going into tournaments. Gotten a little smarter and also train harder. You have to these days.

 
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