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An interview with Roger Federer: Montanes. From Sarah and Zihwye. Thanks.

Posted by tennisplanet on May 29, 2008

Sarah and Zihwye 

Day 5 – An interview with Roger Federer – Thursday, May 29, 2008

Q. It was a different match after that first set. What changed?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, conditions were tough. Obviously, you know, today playing basically 10 games in the rain wasn’t a whole lot of fun. But that’s what happens on clay sometimes, so I was pretty pleased to get to 5‑All.
Coming back from the rain after that, it wasn’t easy. But unfortunately I couldn’t play my best in that particular moment and he was pretty solid. So it was tough going down, you know, a set, but reaction was good and bounced back strong. Played really well after that.
After that first set, I’m very happy with my performance.

Q. Did you feel on track after two rounds, where you want to be?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, I think it’s all right, you know. First match was fine. Second one was, too. Just a little rough with the conditions. Hope it’s going to get better from here. But otherwise, you know, with my performance, yeah, I’m happy.

Q. What about the next one next Mario?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, tough opponent. He’s got a good name, you know, to it, and he’s got a big game, as well. Should be exciting. I’ve played him here in the past when he was a little bit tired after, you know, a brutal match with Robredo like two days before. He couldn’t really recover maybe 100% percent for my match, which was an advantage for me, obviously.
I expect a fresh Mario, really, playing against me. He’s been playing okay again. He’s on the comeback trail, which I’m happy about. He’s a good friend of mine on tour. Should be a nice match.

Q. Just to the conditions, I mean, you prefer it a little bit sunnier, hotter, drier out there on the court?

ROGER FEDERER: No. I mean, well if it’s in the rain it’s no fun. I mean, everything’s wet, the balls get heavy, and the bounces is low. I think on clay maybe against a particular player, you know, against like a huge server maybe, you know, you hope you’re going to play him in the rain, okay?
But other than that, against any other player, I would think it doesn’t really matter what the conditions are. It’s about tactics, about physical shape. It’s about how you play.
For this reason I still haven’t found out what my favorite clay court sort of style is: if it’s humid and wet or if it’s bouncy and quick, you know. I honestly don’t mind anything. That’s how I want to feel at the French.

Q. What’s your mindset? I mean, you know you have to step it up in the latter part of a Slam, the last two, three rounds, and then the first couple rounds you never really know where your game is and what’s going to happen. What about these middle rounds? What’s your mindset going into this middle part of this tournament?

ROGER FEDERER: I always feel a little bit easier than maybe the first, or the first two, just because now in the tournament it’s sort of slowing down a little bit in the locker room. You’ve gotten used to the courts, the conditions now. You know, I know what it’s all about.
The first sort of pressure rounds are through, and now maybe the focus is more on trying to enjoy as well, and playing good tennis instead of trying not to lose in a way, you know. I think that’s a big change in your mindset.
You can now chase the lines a little bit more, whereas maybe in the beginning you sort of see how it goes and you try to play solid, you know. So now you start going for your shots a little bit more.

Q. Taking into account the weather conditions, that first set was more Montanes playing very well or you not playing your best?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, I thought ‑‑ he is a good player. He’s played plenty of matches on clay, and he’s a guy who is going to cause troubles to many players on clay, except maybe the top guys. If they play well, maybe his game is a little too reliable for us.
But I missed a couple breaks points early on, you know, which sort of didn’t help. All of a sudden, tough game at 4‑5 down, which was really difficult, because then it was really pouring down. So I think he played well. You, know, he had good length in his shots. He moved well. It was tough for me to get a read on his serve. He serves very different. He comes very flat. You usually expect a kick serve, you know.
So it was just a matter of getting used to his game. I started to return much better in the second set, and after that my baseline game fell in.

Q. How similar are these conditions with ones you found in Estoril, for example?

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, same. It was raining, so it was identical. I was happy just to go to Estoril just because of that.
Yeah, I mean, it was really windy in Estoril on top of that. It was a nice rain, so it wasn’t the greatest sort of experience on the tennis court. But other than that, it helped me get ready for Monaco. And.
You know, every clay court tournament has something a little bit different, you know. Hamburg is a little bit slower, Rome is a little bit quicker because the courts are very different there because they’re probably much more in the sun throughout the year.
Here in Paris they’re very much like in between, let’s say ‑‑ well, they’re more like Monte‑Carlo, you know. So it’s good to play that event.

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French, please.

Q. You’ve been working with Sven Groeneveld for the last few months. Can you tell us why you chose him? What are the qualities you appreciate in him and what kind of personality he has?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, he’s a good friend. I’ve known him for quite a long time. He was still playing in the national center when I was 14, so I’ve known him since then.
Then he also did a pretty good job during the Davis Cup for us, the players. So when I was left with no coach, I thought I would organize a few things with him. You know, sometimes he was also helping me when Tony Roche was in Australia.
So it’s fun. He can be good fun and we can have good laughs, but he can also be very serious and we can work very hard together. So he’s great. I’m very happy with what he does. He analyzes my game. He does everything he has to do, and I’m very happy. It’s nice traveling around with somebody I’ve known for quite a long time and with somebody I like.

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5 Responses to “An interview with Roger Federer: Montanes. From Sarah and Zihwye. Thanks.”

  1. arbit said

    does anyone knows if federer’s coach higueras is with him at the french open? please reply

  2. Sarah said

    There are photos of him at practice sections. And I believe there was a close-up of him in Roger’s box at the end of round one.

  3. Jenny said

    I saw him there Arbit.

  4. anna said

    Yes he was there for both matches.

  5. cms said

    He was definitely there, and he and Severin talked to him during the rain delay about new tactics (Fed said so in a different interview).

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