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Andy Roddick Memphis Final Interview
By Ken Miller, Lawn Tennis Analyst, Posted: Friday, March 11, 2011 7:45am PST USA
Andy Roddick Memphis Final Interview MEMPHIS--In 2003 Andy Roddick of the USA won the US Open to give his home country its last male singles grand slam champion. Roddick last month took his last singles ATP Tour title in Memphis. After the final round match, Roddick met the press.

ATP Tour: Ok, Andy captures his 30th career title today in his 50th final. And heís now won at least one ATP World Tour title for eleven straight years. He and Roger Federer and the only active players to do that. And he becomes the third three time winner here in Memphis behind Jimmy Connors and Tommy Haas. Ok, questions?

Question: Andy, can you describe what an experience that was just to get through?

Andy Roddick of the USA | Image: AP

Memphis Final 2011:
(1)Andy Roddick(USA) def. (WC)Milos Raonic(CAN) 7-6(9-7), 6-7(11-13), 7-5

Andy Roddick: It was tough. Um, yea I wasnít feeling my best today. Yea, I said I was going to try to go out there. I told Larry, Iím going to serve and try to slop together something. And um, thatís kind of what I did. Um, you know, I knew it wasnítÖ the good thing about the match-up today was thereís so many quick points with the serves that I thought I couldÖ You know if I would have been playing Lleyton todayÖ you know where youíre playing every point, eight to ten balls, it would have been probably a huge physical problem. You know I think that the fact that we both serve pretty big was actually to my benefit today.

Question: Andy you had to dig deep no doubt about it. After winning 30 titlesÖ 50 finalsÖ how many different ways are you starting to learn how to dig deep in tournaments?

Andy Roddick: Well Iíve always tried. You know, thereís something to be said for giving yourself a chance. Honestly today at about 1:15 or 1:30, I didnít like my chances of going out there. Um, you know, I woke up from a little nap at 2:30 and said I might as well go for it. You know, you just stick around and sometimes they roll your way. Today was definitely one of those. You know, I donít think he was his best day. You know, but Iím justÖ

Question: Were you a factor in him not having his best day?

Andy Roddick: Was I bringing him down with my level of play? (laughs) Thatís a possibility.

Question: Have you ever ended a match falling in the air before?

Andy Roddick: Thatís the best shot Iíve ever hit in my life considering the circumstance. I mean I played a pretty good point before that. I mean I madeÖ just making the returnÖ you get disheartened when he doesnít miss the next ball. Itís tough to get a serve back and then he hit a great volley there. I donít really remember much besides the fact that I went for the ball. I hit it. I didnít really think much of it. I was already in my head, you know Ďthereís no way.í And then I heard people cheering. I was like Ďthereís no way that went in.í I guess it did.

Question: You were are far back as the wall permits. How often do you do that? And whatís it like back there for you?

Andy Roddick: Ah, I little lonely. (smiles) No I was literally having to move officials around. You know, on second serves, Iíd call at the middle linesman and say Ďheís coming there so youíre going to have to call it from a different angle.í Um, I donít think I won a ton of points the first five service games so I figured it was time to try something different. I started doing a little bit better when I went way back. Thereís not a lot of guys who force you to have to do that.

Question: What do you think today was like on Graham Andy?

Andy Roddick: (laughs) Yea, it was probably tough. For those of you who donít get the question, Grahamís helped manage my career since I was 17. And now heís kind ofÖ he works with Milos also. I think he sat in the top row today. He was neutral.

Question: Hey Andy what do you think of this Canadian coming up and the young talent he brings to the game?

Andy Roddick: I mean, heís as exciting of a tennis talent as weíve seen in a while. The good news for him is heís going to be able to learn on the job. Because that serve is going to win him a lot of matches even if he goes up and down with the rest of his play. Itís one of the bigger serves Iíve seen. I still think he can learn a lot playing the game. But it wonít surprise me if heís top ten sooner rather than later.

Question: With all the wins youíve had here, where does it rank with all the things youíve done it tennis thatís happened to you this year and every other year?

Andy Roddick: Um, I donít know. I get a certain amount of satisfaction when I get kind of routinely buried, and people try to retire me before Iím ready. And I normally come back pretty strong. I came back after Australia, and thereís a lot of negativity after that tournament. You know so I look forward to the opportunity of getting back out here. Winning tennis tournamentsÖ I donít ever take for granted. You know, Iíve won 30 of them now but I think every one of them is just as exciting. I got just as much joy today as I did my first one. You know, I think I should be able to play because I enjoy it. You know I donít need to answer to anyone elseÖ and um, live up to anyone elseís expectations. I have a blast doing what I do. I feel like I work hard enough and treat the game with respect. You know, at the end of the day, thatís good enough for me.

Question: Andy you took one little break. Was it related to the illness orÖ

Andy Roddick: No, I had to pee.

Question: You talked about not feeling good around 1:15 or 1:30. Was it a fever or was itÖ

Andy Roddick: Iíve had a little bit of a neck issue all week and then Iíve hadÖ Iíve been a little sick. My wife was really sick last week. And I think I might have caught it this week. Iíd been feelingÖ I had a cold and a cough and thatís fine. But today was the first day where I woke up and things were achingÖ really was kind of low on energyÖ wasnít feeling really stellar. I think I warmed up for about four minutes before and was like Iíll try to wing it.

Question: Are you conscious of the fans? The old DiMaggio line that someone might be out there seeing you for the first time? Does that run though your mind?

Andy Roddick: Everything plays into it. Everything plays into it. At the same time you weigh going out and insulting them with a half-assed effort. You know soÖ you know, itís certainlyÖ finals day, thereís not another match they can put on. You know, Iím aware of that. Um, I donít know if that was going to be the ultimate decision maker. I have a hard time making myself go out there and play if I donít feel like I can give the effort that it might take to win. Um, Iím not going to go out there and put on an exhibition, You know, I donít think that shows fans much respect. That kind of almost insults their intelligence a little bit so. You know, when I did go out there, I decided to kind of pick and choose my spots. I was trying to just kind of figure my way through the match and kind of use my energy in bursts.

Question: You mentioned you were feeling poorly. You wanted to get out there quickly. After you lost that second set tiebreaker, how did you kind of rally yourself in the third set after you were down a break?

Andy Roddick: I didnít. IÖ You know, itís the oldÖ I got asked this question a lot after the Wimbledon final in Ď09. You know, how are you going to keep playing? Itís like, well youíve got two options. You either quit or you just stop or you try to keep going. You know, I just kept trying to go. I donít think there was a you know big great horror movie scene going through my head or anything like that. It was like ok, try to hold your next service game. And I was able to do that.

Question: Experience maybe helped you get through a day like this compared to Raonic?

Andy Roddick: Um, I donít think the match-up itself, experience helped me. I think figuring out kind of how to navigate my way through this match; that probably helped. But as far as experience over him, I donít think so. I donít think that had much to do with anything.

Question: He seemed to pick himself up after a couple of match points and he played well last week?

Andy Roddick: Yea, heís going to be just fine. I mean Iím not going to spend my time worrying about him, I promise you. Sorry, worrying for him. You know, heíll be just fine.

Question: Your good friend Mardy Fish played him yesterday. Did you learn anything from that? What did you talk about?

Andy Roddick: The text conversation went like this. Hey dude, sorry about your loss today. You got anything for me? And he goes, ĎI have nothing for you. I thought he served in different spots. There werenít a lot of tendencies. You know, he kind of goes for broke.í I was like, Ďalright, good talking.í

Question: All you guys are great physical athletes. The match looked like it came down to mental strength. Is that something you and Larry work on? What sets you apart? You seem to be obviously in the top ten for so long. You can win these matches. What sets you apart from guys who canít?

Andy Roddick: I have a real bad guilt complex if I donít walk off feeling like I gave it my allÖ (laughs) in all honestlyÖ I donít know. One thing that you can control as an athleteÖ you canít really control how youíre playing at a given momentÖ but you can control your effort. You know, even if youíre playing terrible, play terrible with a hundred percent effort. Thatís something that my dad always told me. Seems simple enough to me.

ATP Tour: Any more questions?

Andy Roddick: Thanks guys.


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