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Wednesday June 23, 2010

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Andy Murray Interview on the draw

Wimbledon 2010

Q. Health-wise, how you are?

ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I feel good. Last four or five days was, you know, good preparation, good training. I took yesterday off. Then, yeah, practiced this morning on the main courts, which was good. It's pretty windy. Then, yeah, I just will probably practice an hour and a half the next couple days and make sure I have no extra pains going in.

Q. What sort of names have you hit with?

ANDY MURRAY: I hit with Feli López today. Who else did I play with? I played on the main courts the other day as well. I played with Djokovic. Yeah, I can't really remember. Djokovic and López are the two guys I practiced on the main courts with.

Q. What do you know about your first-round opponent?

ANDY MURRAY: Not much. I haven't really seen him play before, I don't think. So, yeah, can't really give too much comment on that.

Q. I know you say you don't look at the draw beyond the first round. Do you have an inkling of who is in your quarter?

ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, you always sort of know what's going on around. But it's not worth -- yeah, it's just not worth talking about.

So, you know, in any sport, the highest level, you just can't underestimate anybody. So it's totally pointless looking ahead. You know, so, yeah, just focus on the first match.

Q. Putting that to one side, you do have Sam Querrey down the line potentially. Do you put him below the top echelon of guys, yourself, Roger, Rafa included?

ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, he's a big guy, big game. Obviously played very well at Queen's. But, you know, there's a good chance that, you know, one of us is going to lose in the tournament. So it could come early; it could come later on. It's just, you know, very disrespectful to the rest of the guys in the draw, I think, to just look ahead of who's in front of you. You know, if Sam does well, I do well, there's a good chance we'll play. A lot can happen at Grand Slams.

Q. What helps you most from your past Wimbledon experiences for this time around?

ANDY MURRAY: Well, I think, you know, the first time -- I mean, each year, you know, maybe from last year was the first year I had sort of a legitimate chance of winning the tournament, you know, so it was good to have had that experience. When I played in the past, there's obviously pressure on you to do well, but not necessarily win the event. Now, you know, that's where I feel like I'm at, you know, trying to win the tournament.

And last year would have helped me with that because obviously played well, had a good tournament, but still obviously learnt a few things I could have done better. You just get used to playing, you know, when you're at home in front of your home crowd, dealing with sort of the surroundings, everything that goes on with the tournament.

Q. With regard to last night, I'm not going to ask you to comment about what went on on the pitch, because I know that's a mine field for you. In terms of the weight of public, national expectation, do you have some sympathy with Wayne Rooney?

ANDY MURRAY: The one thing that I do know is that when you are sort of in the heat of the moment, when you have just finished the match, when things haven't gone as you would have liked, you can say things you don't, you know, necessarily mean. You can be upset or angry about the way you played and therefore say something, you know, that you might regret, you know, even 20 minutes, 30 minutes afterwards.

But it is difficult. It's obviously a lot of pressure on England to do well at the World Cup. You know, it's the same, you know, with the tennis players here, with a lot of sport in this country because, you know, it gets a lot of coverage.

Everybody loves -- well, most of the people I know love watching sport, especially the big events. People want to see him do well. When you don't, they're not best pleased.

Q. Do you give concern to what the public perception is of you? Is that something you think about?

ANDY MURRAY: No. I think, you know, you need, especially in an individual sport, to be selfish in a way. You need to be able to sort of block all that out.

When I was younger, it was something that got to me a little bit because you just don't know how to deal with everything. Now I'm fully aware there are people that don't like me and people that do like me. That's just kind of the way things work.

It doesn't affect what you do on the court. So long as your friends and family like you, that's the most important thing.

Q. Do you think the media attention feels any different because of the World Cup?

ANDY MURRAY: Maybe it's slightly different. You know, it's not been quite as busy, you know, as last year. But, you know, I'm sure once the tournament starts, then it will pick up a lot. I don't think the World Cup will get in the way of Wimbledon too much. But, yeah, maybe this week's been a little bit quieter than last year.

Q. The Queen is coming to Centre Court on Thursday. What would that mean for you to play in front of her?

ANDY MURRAY: It obviously would be a great honor to play in front of the Queen. I've never done that before, so obviously a little bit added pressure to play well. But obviously it would be nice. I don't think she's come to watch too often, so... Good to get the chance to play in front of her.

Q. You have been known to come out with the odd word that perhaps you might not like to hear. Is that something that is going to play on your mind?

ANDY MURRAY: I wouldn't have thought so, no. Kind of when you're on the court, you do go into a bit of a bubble that you're not really aware too much of what's going on around you. So normally I'm on my best behavior at Wimbledon anyway, so I'll try (smiling).

Q. What sort of empathy did you have for the English goalie after that first game? In general, what sort of sense do you have when there are mistakes made in another sport when you're watching? What common denominator do you feel for those athletes?

ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, you understand. Everybody's been there and done it, you know, made bad mistakes. In tennis, you make mistakes at important points in matches, you know, on the biggest stages in the world.

Yeah, you just understand that it can happen to everyone. And unless you played sport at the highest level, it's very difficult to know, you know, how they might be feeling or what's going through their head when that happens.

So, yeah, can definitely sympathize with them a little bit. But, you know, at the same time sport's a pretty tough world. When you are playing at the highest level, you don't necessarily expect those sort of things to happen.

Q. Over the last 12 months, have you found yourself looking back at the match with Roddick and thought about it and used it as motivation?

ANDY MURRAY: No. I think like after the match I was obviously very disappointed. But, you know, you have to -- you know, always you have to sort of look at tournaments as a whole.

You know, of the six matches I played here, there was some very good tennis. But also I knew after that I needed to improve things. Yeah, I went away and worked hard. I went and spent some time over in Miami before the American stretch afterwards, worked hard to get in better shape, to work on my game.

Yeah, I haven't watched the match or looked back at it. I don't watch really any matches back so... But I kind of -- you know, as a sports person, you do know sort of the things you need to work on after big tournaments. When you've lost close matches, you know the sort of things that have let you down, things that could have been a bit better. You go away and work on them.

Q. A lot of people will have expectations on you going in. What sort of expectations do you set on yourself?

ANDY MURRAY: I want to look to try and win the tournament, is my goal. I think that's the best way to go into it. But you have to stay focused on, you know, every round. There's no use looking ahead in the draw. It just doesn't work, doesn't help at all if you do that. You know, I'll be very focused for my first match. If I play well, then I've got a chance to do well here. But playing well is the most important thing and winning.

Q. You mentioned that you had some improvements that you realized you had to make after that match last year. To what degree do you now consider yourself an improved player versus a year ago?

ANDY MURRAY: Well, I mean, the last few months haven't been particularly good. But I think the improvements I made were sort of shown at the Australian Open this year. You don't make improvements over sort of, you know, two weeks. It does take time to put them into your game. I feel like, yeah, I became a better player. Got stronger, started serving harder, and more often I was hitting the ball harder more consistently, was playing better up at the net. That's something that, after the Australian Open, I got away from a little bit, something that I'll look to do better here.

Q. On Thursday if you do get through, I assume you'll be bowing to the Royal Box. Would you like other competitors to do the same? The All England Club has left it to personal preference.

ANDY MURRAY: I mean, if the players want to, it should be personal preference, I guess. Yeah, I mean, I don't know exactly when they stopped doing it. But, you know, obviously got to be up to the player to decide. I'm sure all of the players might like to do it. But after a match, like I was playing with the Rooney thing, it's not always necessarily as soon as after you finish the first thing you think about.

Q. What about yourself?

ANDY MURRAY: I'll have to wait and see. I'll have a chat with the guys. I don't want to be bowing and the person I'm playing with walk straight past or the other way around. You obviously need to have an agreement before you go on, I think. I'll have to speak to, you know, the organizers about it.

Q. If the other guy doesn't want to bow, then you won't?

ANDY MURRAY: I don't want to get into some ridiculous, you know, argument over something like that. I'll speak to the organizers.

Q. I'm trying to understand.

ANDY MURRAY: I'll see what the organizers want us to do and I'll do what they tell us to.

Q. How disappointing is it there's only you and Jamie in the men's singles from Britain this year?

ANDY MURRAY: It's not great. Yeah, I'd like to have more players. It's better for me. The more British guys around, the better. It's not obviously ideal if you've only got a couple of guys playing, you know, when you do have a lot of -- you've got eight wild cards to use, as well. It's not great.

Q. Would you like to have seen more of the wild cards given to British players even if they weren't in the top 250?

ANDY MURRAY: I think it's up to the guys, you know, that are on the boards of the LTA to make those decisions. It's not really something that I necessarily want to get involved in, to be honest.

Q. You mentioned the impact of winning this tournament. If you were to win this tournament, it would have quite a major impact on your personal and professional life. Specifically how do you think it would affect you?

ANDY MURRAY: Well, I don't know. It's all sort ever hypothetical. You don't know exactly what would happen, you know, until you do win the event. I'm just sure, you know, it would change a lot of things in terms of, you know, a lot of attention, more demands on your time, you know, and that sort of thing. Uhm, but, yeah, I don't know exactly. That's just what I imagine would happen. You never know until it happens.

Q. Last year after your semifinal, a few players came out and talked about perhaps the passivity they seem to think you fall into. Are you kind of used to that aspect of criticism of your game, being too passive?

ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I know it's very easy to criticize people when you're watching matches. You know, I'm sure a lot of people that haven't played football have been criticizing the England team the last few days.

You know, you have to make sure that you're doing the things that the guys you're working with are wanting you to work on, the team of people you work with. If they're happy with the way things are going, the way that you're playing, and also yourself, if you're comfortable with how things are going, that's the most important thing.

You know, a lot of people will have different opinions on what you should be doing with your game. But, you know, no one actually knows unless they come watch you, what you're practicing, what you're working on, what you're trying to do.

So, you know, I just need to keep playing my own game. It's worked well for me so far.

Q. As a nation, you can see from the fallout of the England game, do you think we're slightly too desperate for success because we've waited so long for it? Is there a little bit too much pressure, too much from us?


Q. From the nation, from the media. Are we too desperate?

ANDY MURRAY: I don't know if it's desperate. You know, I just think, you know, obviously being a quite wealthy country, there's been a lot of money invested in sports. We'd probably like to see a little bit more sort of rewards and titles for it.

In all of the matches that I played at Wimbledon, the support that I've had has been great. Everybody has got behind me. Played in some of the best atmospheres I've ever played in. They support very well.

But, you know, I think to win a World Cup is incredibly difficult. To win Wimbledon is incredibly difficult, as well. These are very, very, hard, hard things to do. There's been a lot of people that have come close the last few years, last 10 or 15 years with Tim, and myself last year. You know, we just need, yeah, the support. If we get that, hopefully one day we'll be able to change it.

Q. Do you enjoy this fortnight or do you endure it?

ANDY MURRAY: No, I enjoy it. It's great. Best two weeks of the year, for sure, from the atmosphere on court to just being at home. When you're playing a tournament when you're staying at home, it does make a huge, huge difference. Yeah, your attitude just away from the court, it's nice to be able to relax and go home and spend time with your family and friends. For me, that makes it a lot easier.

Q. You were telling us a few nights ago the nerves do kick in here.

ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, that's great. I love it.

Q. How have they been?

ANDY MURRAY: No, right now I'm not nervous. I'll be nervous probably the night before the match. And then, yeah, when I get on the court, you know, I'm sure I'll be nervous at the start. But being nervous is one of the best things for a sports person. You know, it shows that you care, that you're ready to play. If there's no nerves, that's when I get worried. If I don't have that adrenaline... I feel like I play my best tennis when I have the adrenaline, when I'm nervous. I hope, come Tuesday, I'm very nervous when I go on the court.




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