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19/01/2011 12:06 CEST - AUSTRALIAN OPEN

Fernando Verdasco (19 Gennaio)

Fernando Verdasco

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Q. So how does this win rate with the other victories that you've had?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: Well, I think that, you know, every time you win one match like this in a Grand Slam, it's important, no, for yourself to get confidence, to see that you are good physically and mentally.
So, you know, it was of course very important win after coming again two sets to Love down, and also saving the match point in the fourth set. So, you know, I think it's very positive for me.

Q. Two sets to love down, what was your strategy?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: Well, just he was playing really good and aggressive, so I just tried to be a little bit more aggressive with my serve, with my forehand. Also trying to get the timing at the return to try to put a little bit more put him a little bit more in trouble with his serve.
Well, you know, keep fighting all the time, because I was really close to lose today. I think that just my mentality was the key, one of the biggest key today to come back.

Q. When he took the medical timeout did that give you added confidence?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: Well, if I'm honest, not so much, because, you know, I really play I was really focus on myself and just coming back the fourth set two times that he had he served to close the match. And the tiebreak, you know, playing like really good for me gave me a lot confidence.
I saw him also a little bit tired, even I knew that he was tired a little bit in the end of the fourth set, even if he didn't take that medical timeout. But of course when you saw that your opponent is taking a medical, then you try to push a little bit more to take a quick advantage in the beginning of the next set.

Q. Did you feel he was trying in the fifth set?

Q. Was he?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: Well, I think that I don't know. This is question I think that he must answer, not me, no? I think that he was tired; he got the medical right after the first game. After that, I didn't see him moving really good. I don't know if it was so much pain what he have or not. I think he's the only one who knows that.
So I was trying to don't push the brake, keep pushing the gas and going in the fifth set the same that I was playing the tiebreak in the fourth set.

Q. Next up is Kei Nishikori. Do you have any information? What impression do you have about him?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: Well information, I know him and I practice with him long time ago. Of course I know him. He's Japanese, right?

Q. Yes.
FERNANDO VERDASCO: I'm joking. (Smiling.) I think that he's a very fast player; his legs, he move his legs really fast. And I think that, you know, like he's with confidence starting this year. I think that he's like motivated for this year. He have also this year the help of Brad Gilbert so for sure he will improve his game with a coach like that.
I know it's going to be a tough match. Every match in third round of a Grand Slam is tough. You know, I will just try to keep playing the same that I did today. Not the fifth set today because it was a little bit not normal. But maybe if I can say like the third and the fourth set of the match today, I hope to be like that in two days: play aggressive, serve big, and just fight all the time to try to win again.

Q. You've been working with Gil Reyes, and he always used to be very fit. Is he trying to make you fitter?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: He always try to make me fitter. I don't know until when or where I can go with him, because, you know, if I keep working like that four or five hours every day fitness, you know, maybe I can go to fight at the UFC and not play tennis anymore. Because it's incredible. We work so hard every time I'm there.
But of course if I can translate that energy and power that we work in the position every time I'm there to the court, you know, I'm so like I'm so healthy and strong when I play. Today for example I felt it, no? I felt that even when the match was longer and longer, I was feeling better and better. So for sure it's part of that work I did.

Q. Seems like you twisted your ankle at the end...
FERNANDO VERDASCO: Yeah, I twist it in that game, in the game 6 5 on his serve in the fourth set. But, you know, when you twist your ankle pushing hard, you are always like with a little bit worried, no, to see what you have. So the first steps it was more to see if it was painful or not. It was not. I just got scared, but it was nothing important and I feel good.

Q. You're No. 9 in the world, and obviously Rafa is always there in Spain. Do you feel like you're in the shadow of Nadal? Is that a good or bad thing to have him always dominating Spanish tennis?
FERNANDO VERDASCO: I answer this question already many times. I don't feel in the shadow because you have another player that's No. 1 or 2 in the world in the last five, six years, no? He did so good job all these years winning many tournaments and many Grand Slams.
All he did he deserve, no? I'm just trying to be a better player and try to win also big tournaments, no? I think that I will get whatever I deserve the same like everybody else. But of course, you know, he is the No. 1, and many times everybody speaks about him and not about the others.
Not only me, about like maybe Ferrer or Ferrero or Almagro. I think there's been a lot of Spanish tennis players, and we need to be so proud of that. I think that's the most important thing.


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Il Rebound Ace, la discussa superficie degli Australian Open dal 1988,viene presa di mira e criticata dopo che 2 giocatori, Gabriela Sabatini e Mark Woodforde, subiscono seri infortuni alla caviglia che li costringono a lasciare il campo sulla sedia a rotelle nel loro match di terzo turno.

Tratto da: On This Day in Tennis History di Randy Walker