Q. Feel pretty
good about that first round, getting that out of the way,
picking up where you left off the last year?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, it was a good start. It was pretty
solid all around. I thought I served pretty good
percentages. I thought I returned pretty well. And, you
know, it was probably a little more straightforward than
I thought it might be.
So it's a good start.
Q. How long have you known him?
ANDY RODDICK: I mean, obviously you know all the guys
from the States pretty well. We never played. But, I
mean, we've all practiced together enough to know what to
Q. He wanted to try to attack you, but you returned
pretty well, too.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I did. You know, I felt like I
returned and I hit pretty good passes today. You know, I
think that forced him to maybe try to go for a little bit
too much. You know, I don't think he wanted to stay out
there and rally too much today and make it about
movement, moving the ball around and stuff.
You know, that allowed me to get the upper hand and put
him in maybe some tough spots.
Q. You get another attacking player in the next round.
He's been playing well.
ANDY RODDICK: He's been playing great, you know. It's a
very, very dangerous match. You know, not a lot of
mystery to what he's going to do. He does it pretty well.
You know, if he serves well, it's going to be a tough
one. It's going to come down to some points here and
So, you know, I am happy with the way I returned today.
You know, if I'm close to that, then I should get myself
some looks. No, it's a tough one. But I'm sure he's not
happy about it either.
Q. A little bit more nervous coming back into this
tournament because you left Queen's a little bit earlier
than you planned to?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. I mean, I didn't -- I wasn't too, too
panicked. I was definitely ready to play a match, you
know. There's only so much practice that can be done. You
know, especially it was never a question of how I felt I
was hitting the ball. You know, so I wasn't too worried.
But, you know, I was ready to start playing in a
tournament, that's for sure.
Q. You had to wait over four hours to get on Court 1
today. What did you do in that time?
ANDY RODDICK: Play some Monopoly. Dominated some
Scrabble. I watched some tennis. Watched some football.
That was pretty much it.
Q. Which tennis match were you watching?
ANDY RODDICK: Challenger that was going on, a future back
home in the States.
Q. You were watching Roger's match?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I think everyone was watching that
Q. When you watch, does it get you tense at all? Do
you think, maybe I should stop watching this?
ANDY RODDICK: No, not really. You know, I think everyone
else gets real excited about, you know, looking down the
road, looking down the road, looking down the road.
That's just not the way most of us are programmed.
I think, you know, I said ad nauseam, it's probably
boring to all of you, it is true: you play the next one.
That's all I really worry about. Obviously, if a guy
comes up with a huge shot at a big time, everyone in the
locker room kind of gets excited. But as far as like
being tense, I think I was more relaxed watching it.
Q. What was the buzz like watching that match, Federer
down two sets?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, I mean, I don't think anyone expected
it. We were probably all -- I don't think the sentiment
was much different than where you guys are watching it
from. I think everyone was pretty surprised, especially
when it became very, very real there in the latter
stages, I think Love-40 in the third, and then when he
was serving for it in the fourth.
Obviously, everyone was pretty surprised that it was at
Q. Given how last year concluded for you, you said you
were ready to play a match. How eager were you to get
back here and get this underway again?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, it's weird because I can answer that
question, but it doesn't have everything to do with last
year. I'm always eager to get back and play this
tournament. You know, that hasn't changed. You know, I'm
always eager and anxious to start a slam. You know, that
doesn't change it.
You know, obviously you just kind of put a lot more in
the memory bank. But, you know, I think I would have been
excited to start either way.
Q. There are seven men in the draw who are fathers.
With all the pressures and demands of tennis, do you look
at these guys and wonder how they do it, be fathers, play
ANDY RODDICK: You know what, I normally comment on stuff
that I have some sort of idea about. And I don't have an
idea about that as far as I'm aware (smiling).
You know, it's got to be demanding. But for me to sit
here and give you my opinion on fatherhood when I have no
idea about it I think would be a little presumptuous on
Q. Have you felt a different reception coming here
after last year?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I think so. But I felt that
everywhere. It wasn't just coming here into London that
kind of sparked it. You know, obviously when I talk to
people, that's what they want to talk about most times.
But I think it would have been pretty dumb of me to come
over here and be surprised by that, that people wanted to
talk about it.
I think I have a pretty good grasp of it, you know. I
certainly realize that it had an effect on some people.
You know, so it is different. It is different. But, you
know, it's nice, too.
Q. You've been around Mardy the last month quite a
bit. Do you want to assess the state of his game, where
you think he could be headed in the tournament. You might
face him in the fourth round. Do you think his level has
been pretty good?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, yeah. I mean, regardless of where we
both are, whatever, a week from now, you know, Mardy is
probably as motivated as he's been.
You know, he's doing everything the right way right now.
You know, I'm real proud as a friend of the progress that
he's been able to make.
You know, he got hurt last year. He really took that as
an opportunity to, you know, treat his body right and do
the right things. You know, I've always told him, You do
it long enough, things start tilting your way a little
bit. It seems like that's the case right now.
So, you know, he certainly deserves this patch of success
that he has going right now.
Q. Is it fair to say now that you're back here, it's a
new day, a new tournament, that you kind of want to bury
the memory from last year and not use it as some
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know that I deal in extremes. I
said the first day I got here, people are, How are you
going to forget it? I'm not going to forget it. That's an
impossibility. It was a huge moment in my life.
It's a tournament I'm very proud of as far as, you know,
closing my eyes and thinking real hard and making my
forehand better today by thinking about last year, I
don't know how to do that either. You know, I'll remember
it, but this is a separate tournament. You know, the goal
is the second round here.
So, you know, I can talk about it, it's fine, it's no
Q. People are talking about it. They bring it up. You
want to put it aside and focus on what you're doing. Is
that fair to say?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, you want to focus on this year's
event, but I'm fully aware that's not the reality of the
situation. Therefore, I'm not going to let it bother me.
I'm not going to act agitated. It was a privilege to play
in that match. I'm not going to act like it's a burden
now, that's for sure.
Q. Do you get the impression that Rafa is maybe back
to where he was two years ago where he can seriously
challenge for the title again after what happened in
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. I don't know that I ever have gone
into a Grand Slam and said Rafa can't challenge for the
title. You know, it's a very fine line between playing
okay and playing really well. And right now he's kind of
found that 'really well' again.
I guess for me, I look at it, you know, I see -- the way
it's presented as far as Rafa's success is a little bit
predictable to me as far as what I read. It's like he
hasn't won a tournament for this long, all of a sudden he
gets on the clay, he wins everything, everyone changes
him into a different human being. He's the same human
being. He's the most dominant clay court player that's
ever played. He's the best clay court player in my
opinion that's played. And obviously winning matches
creates confidence. You know, so obviously he uses that
as a bit of a springboard.
But, you know, I don't think anybody in the locker room
has ever said, Rafa is not the same. It's just a matter
of him getting into a groove. He lost one match last
year. It's one match in six years. Everyone acted like he
was finished, it was the end, it was this. We don't deal
in headlines or extremes again. He lost one match.