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Écrit par Jerome   
18-09-2006

THE LIPTON CHAMPIONSHIPS'94
Key Biscayne, FL

March 14, 1994

A. AGASSI/B. Becker

6-2, 7-5

AN INTERVIEW WITH

 

ANDRE AGASSI

Q. Andre, the ball girl has challenged you officially.

ANDRE AGASSI: Has she? She intimidated me out there. I don't want any part of her.

Q. Did that affect your concentration when that happened at all?

ANDRE AGASSI: No. I don't think so. I think that if anything, I think it kind of helped Boris to kind of break things up a little bit. Didn't affect me. I was very focused on what I needed to do today. Every point was very important to me. And I came back and hit a double, but I hit both serves very effectively and I was-- so I didn't feel bad about that. Boris picked up his level and when I broke him back to go 3-1, he the same thing the next game, he raised his game, so I think it helped him. But all in all it was just-- it was just a tight, tight second set.

Q. Seems like there was a lot of breaks going on; is that just trying to turn things around right away, or do you attribute it to the way you guys return serve?

ANDRE AGASSI: I think it is tough to say, you know, I think Boris and I today really returned and served well. I mean, he really pressured my second, and he made some big returns off my first. I was returning extremely well too. So it did probably have to do with our returns today.

Q. You have worked on one of those baseball batting cages and if you have, how fast are the balls being pitched to you?

ANDRE AGASSI: Fast as I have been in is 90.

Q. Hit any of them?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, I mean, it is not like 120 when you are out there on the court.

Q. Baseball is a little --

ANDRE AGASSI: Is it smaller? Not much.

Q. Andre, why today, this game, this match, today, what did it do for you for the rest of the tournament?

ANDRE AGASSI: I think today was important to me-- not necessarily for the rest of the tournament, that really goes unsaid-- but it was a great step for me in coming back now. I mean, It's really important to me. I get a lot of matches in, and as far as I am concerned I made a very strong leap forward to be a little bit more confident and I get to play another match, and so there is a lot of things I feel good about. I can raise my level and play well enough to win the tournament, but really it is one step at a time for me at this stage. I can't look further by "who I am playing next." Today was Boris, and tomorrow Pioline, so it is just one step at a time.

Q. How important was it not to get into a third set?

ANDRE AGASSI: I didn't feel too threatened at that point. Late in the second I felt like I had a lot of points to break him. He served at Love-30 twice and another game he was serving, you know, 30-All, and then finally when I broke him for the match, he was having a tough deuce game, so I felt like I was putting enough pressure on his serve and holding easy enough to where the longer we stayed out there, the more I felt like I could do it. But then again, Boris is the kind of player that if he gets in the third, he can raise his level at any moment, and so in that sense, anything can happen, but I still felt like I was in control.

Q. With your hand speed, ever thought about being a major league baseball player or minor league?

ANDRE AGASSI: I never entered that thought seriously, no.

Q. You think one of the reasons why you have such a good consistent racket over Boris's; you are quicker around the court than he is and your footwork is getting so good?

ANDRE AGASSI: You know, I think, you know, there is certain things in my favor when I play Boris. I am faster than him, for sure. I am a little better off the ground, but his serve is stronger than mine and his net game is stronger than mine and he is a better athlete than I am - the pros and cons way out. It is just a question of how games fit into each other. I think that he tries to stay back a lot against me and then that favors me and then he comes in really like a target. Really, the bottom line is that I play well against players like Boris, and Stefan and Pete, those are guys I play well against.

Q. A lot of people made a big deal about the Bollettieri situation; both you and Boris really kind of played that down; much to do about nothing?

ANDRE AGASSI: That is because you know, I mean, Nick is insignificant, to be quite honest. I pretty much knew what he was going to tell Boris, I mean, it is not like you know -- I have been around him for years. It is quite predictable. I know he is going to tell him to take the backhands up the line early in the point; to try not to come in behind the second serve except every now and again. Come in off the first ball of the rally, these are things that he told that he not only is going to tell Boris to play me like that, but he is going to tell Boris to play everybody like that.

Q. Did it help you; did you get pumped up a little bit more?

ANDRE AGASSI: No, I always play well against Boris.

Q. Andre, are you saying that Nick is not a great strategist; that he is a little predictable in what he tells the players to do?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah, I feel like his knowledge of the game is limited. There is no question about that. I mean, if you're ever wondering how much he knows, go play him a set of tennis, you know. He has never played. Only so much you can know never really being out there knowing what it is like. But he can sell himself pretty well. I mean, bottom line he convinced-- probably spent most of his time convincing Boris that he was the reason why I beat Boris. That is just the way he works. Professionally.

Q. When you were under him you spoke differently. When you were coached by him, you spoke highly and gave him a lot of credit for what he was able to do.

ANDRE AGASSI: He was very important to me for the first few years; there is no question about that. But then, you know, there is a change that happens all of a sudden, you know, you become more important to his career than he is to yours. And I think he lose as little bit of perspective. You start making more money than him or you start getting more fame than him, and he starts getting insecure and he stops asserting the knowledge that he does have, and pretty soon, you know, from a professional standpoint, from coach to player, you grow further apart. That is just what happens. I meaning, it is, you know, it hasn't happened -- it has happened with a lot of the players that he has had, and I cared enough about him for that not to affect my relationship with him, but once, you know, he showed me that he considered himself number 1, and put me second, I mean, I just don't-- I don't have friends in my life that do that, you know, if that is his standard of friendship, then is his standard it is not mine.

Q. A couple of days ago you said you guys were basically still friends, though not maybe on the same terms as before; do you still stand by that?

ANDRE AGASSI: I am friends on his terms, which is I looks out for myself and he looks out for himself. I like Nick. There is no question about that. Before, it was a different level. I mean, you know, what it is like if you have been through a divorce, I mean, right? The people go through things like that all the time. It is not-- really having never gone through divorce, it is tough to say this, but it is really along those same lines. It affects you to that degree. I mean, probably not quite as much. But it has been hard.

Q. If he didn't do the move, would you have done that? If he did not do that, if he did not do it to you, would you have departed from him?

ANDRE AGASSI: No. Really, my loyalty goes beyond that. I mean, I felt like years ago which is when in 1991 is when I discussed with Nick, privately first and said, you know, I want to start looking for outside help, but it is important to me that you stay part of my career. Then he supported that, so, I mean, for a few years, I have known I needed more, but I have addressed two years of my career that way, not leaving him, but saying you know, help me with this, we are on the same team here. And then that changed.

Q. Any problems with the wrist?

ANDRE AGASSI: No. It is getting better. I am just -- it is getting better everyday.

Q. Andre, one final question on the ball girl. Do you feel that that was totally Boris' doing, a little gamesmanship or do you feel it was all in good fun?

ANDRE AGASSI: Gamesmanship between strategy --

Q. Trying to throw your concentration because you were winning?

ANDRE AGASSI: I think he was looking for something to get him into it. Not so much for it to bring me down. I think it did. I think it gave him add second to be focused; not be so negative; then he started playing really well.

Q. What is your program now going through as far as Paris?

ANDRE AGASSI: I play Osaka. Then I will have a couple of weeks off. I will play Monte Carlo, Atlanta, Rome, Paris.

Q. Anything before Wimbledon on grass?

ANDRE AGASSI: No, not this year. No, I am not going to do that.

Q. Just practice?

ANDRE AGASSI: Yeah.

Q. In Europe or will you come back?

ANDRE AGASSI: I will be a week ahead of -- I will definitely come back, but I will be a week ahead for Wimbledon.

Q. Andre, you played doubles last night with Robert Seguso. Is that a permanent pairing or something you did while you were down here?

ANDRE AGASSI: No, I am just trying to get him out of retirement. I have got to wait to see how he feels about it.

Q. Anything else?. Thanks, Andre.

ANDRE AGASSI: Thanks.
 
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