TENNIS WIMBLEDON 2014 – 30th of June. A. Murray d. K. Anderson 6-4, 6-3, 7-6. An interview with Andy Murray
Q. You mentioned in your TV interview, you said you played well outdoors, and when it went indoors you kind of fell back a bit. Could you expand on that, what the difference is with the roof?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, obviously everything was going my way when we stopped, and then, yeah, it’s different conditions. I mean, most players will tell you that there’s a big difference between playing indoors and outdoors. It changes the way the court plays.
And, yeah, that was it. He started hitting the ball cleaner. I started off a bit tentative when we came back out.
But, you know, I still did well. I still created loads of chances, a lot of opportunities in the third set, and just couldn’t quite get them.
But, I mean, I still played pretty well under the roof. I was just a little bit more tentative and he was going for his shots a little bit more, was maybe feeling – you know, when there’s no wind, it was drizzling a little bit for like 20, 30 minutes before we stopped, he was maybe a bit more comfortable under his feet as well when he was moving. Maybe that was it.
Q. With the roof, were you given an explanation why the match started with the roof open when there was rain coming?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, they should always try to play with the roof open because it’s an outdoor event. I think we need to give the players the opportunity to play outdoors as long as possible.
Yeah, when it does rain, you know, it’s going to be there for a while. Yeah, they obviously need to close it.
But, I mean, we played for, what, 1 hour and 20 minutes or 30 minutes outdoors. It wasn’t like it was just five or ten minutes.
Q. How happy are you with your performance?
ANDY MURRAY: I don’t mark myself. I was just happy that I won the match. I was a bit disappointed with how I started under the roof. The beginning, like I said, I was a little bit tentative. Apart from that, that sort of three or four games when we came back out, I played well.
I created many chances, gave him a few opportunities. That’s what you need to do on grass court tennis. You don’t always break. But if you keep putting them under enough pressure, you’re going to get through in the end.
Q. When you went off court, I presume you spoke with Amélie, what were the logistics of that? Did you have a chat in the corridor?
ANDY MURRAY: I’ve been asked that question quite a lot about the locker room. On the women’s tour, there’s literally no female coaches, so they have to deal with those things every single day.
I went in, I showered, I got changed. Then went outside the locker room and chatted with Danny and Amélie five steps from the door to the locker room. That was it.
Q. Sir Alex was in the Royal Box today. Have you had a chance to see him? How much contact do you have with him generally?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, sent a message to each other at various times during the year. I chatted to him for a few minutes after the match. Not for long, but just immediately when I came off the court, I had a little chat to him.
Yeah, we stay in contact throughout the year.
Q. You mentioned you talked to Alex Ferguson. Last year you mentioned gold dust from him. Without giving away any secrets, did he tell you anything today you might use further on in the tournament?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I mean, we chat about a lot of things. We talked about my match today, spoke about football, World Cup a little bit. Then, yeah, he just said a few things, what he’s observed when he’s been watching me, not necessarily about technical or tactical things, but more sort of mental things, how you respond to tough or tight situations.
Yeah, I mean, obviously you’re going to listen to someone like him. He’s witnessed a lot of big sort of tight sporting occasions. He obviously knows his stuff.
Q. You play Dimitrov next, who is not a top-10 guy but has gotten a lot of attention. When you see someone getting this sort of buildup before they have a major breakthrough, what do you think? Can it be harmful to them or does it just encourage them?
ANDY MURRAY: I think everyone deals with those things differently. I think maybe right at the beginning of his career it was hard for him because everyone was comparing him to Federer. That’s impossible to live up to what Roger’s achieved.
You know, maybe no one again will ever win that many slams. I know Rafa’s got a shot, but it’s going to take a while I think before someone wins 18, 19 majors again. So that could have been tough for him at the beginning of his career.
But now he’s starting to come into his prime. He’s won a lot of matches this year. You know, he’s a tough player. Will be a hard match for me.
Q. Your reading of what Kevin Anderson was going to do today really stood out. Was that luck or was there a bit more, a sixth sense in reading what he’s going to do?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, yeah, I mean, I guess, you know, anticipation is – yeah, a bit of it’s guessing, but a bit of it is just sort of being educated in a way that you can see certain movements that they’re making just before they hit the shot and almost thinking what they’re thinking, as well, in that little split second that you have to make a decision which side to go.
But, yeah, that’s just part of defending in the game. Anticipation is very important. It’s something I’ve done well since I was a kid.
Q. Back to Dimitrov, what changes have you seen in him since he took up with Roger Rasheed?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, he’s a more mature player now, I think. He makes better decisions on the court than he used to. I mean, watching him play, his strokes and stuff, technically he hasn’t made many changes to his game.
But he’s playing higher-percentage tennis, making better decisions. That adds up to winning many more matches.
So he can obviously hit a lot of different shots. He has a lot of variety in his game. Sometimes it takes time to know how to use that properly. He’s starting to do that now.
Q. How big a step up do you think Grigor is from what you’ve faced so far?
ANDY MURRAY: It’s a step up because it’s one round further, and the guys that are in the quarterfinals are going to be playing top tennis. He obviously won Queen’s a couple weeks ago. He likes the grass courts.
Yeah, it’s a big opportunity for him, as well, playing on the Centre Court, the courts at Wimbledon for the first time.
Yeah, it’s a great opportunity for him. Hopefully we can play a good match.
Q. What are your thoughts on the idea of a timer for the time in between points? Do you think that could possibly be something that would be embraced by the players and be helpful?
ANDY MURRAY: I think it’s the only way to go, to be honest, because how are you supposed to know as a player how long 20 seconds is or 25 seconds between a point?
When I’m playing, it’s not something I’m ever thinking about, how long I’m taking between the point. Then sometimes if you’re playing too slow, the umpire tells you at the change of ends. You ask him, How slow am I going? He said, Two or three seconds.
Obviously we’ve been playing a lot of tennis matches, so we have an understanding of, you know, when we’re kind of going over the limits or not. But you don’t know when it’s 4-All in the fifth set of a match, you played a 30-shot rally, you’re not counting in your head 20 seconds. You’re thinking about tactics or what you’re going to do on the next point.
When you get a warning or a player gets a warning, at that stage you can understand when they’re frustrated because they don’t know how long they’ve taken. If it’s right there for everyone to see, then there’s no arguing from the player’s side.
Eight Quick Facts About Novak Djokovic’s French Open Win
After triumphing in Paris for the second time in his career, the Serbian has rewritten the tennis history books once again.
Novak Djokovic is once again the French Open champion after fighting back and outlasting a bitterly disappointed Stefanos Tsitsipas.
The latest milestone achieved by the Serbian has moved him closer to his ultimate goal of breaking the all-time record for most major titles won by a player on the ATP Tour. Although he has also achieved a series of other accomplishments following his latest triumph in Paris. Below is a summary of how Djokovic’s most recent win will fit into history.
- Djokovic has now won 19 Grand Slam titles in his career, which is the second highest in the history of men’s tennis. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are currently on 20. It is possible that he can overtake his two rivals this year if he wins both Wimbledon and the US Open.
- He has become the first man in the Open Era to have won every Grand Slam title multiple times. The only other players to achieve this milestone are Roy Emerson and Rod Laver.
- Djokovic has also become the third man in history to have won both the French Open and Australian Open within the same season multiple times. Following in the footsteps of Emerson and Laver.
- He is the third oldest player to have won Roland Garros after Nadal (34 years, 130 days) and Andres Gimeno (34 years, 306 days).
- It is the sixth time in his career he has come back from two sets down to win a match. His win-loss record in best-of-five matches now stands at 35-10.
- He has become only the eighth man in the Open Era to have won multiple French Open titles. Nadal holds the record with 13 trophies.
- He has become the first man in history to have won a seventh major title after turning 30. Since reaching the milestone age, he has won the Australian Open three times (2019-2021), Wimbledon twice (2018-2019), US Open once (2018) and French Open once (2021).
- When the rankings are updated on Monday, Djokovic will lead with 12313 points which is 1800 more than second place Daniil Medvedev.
Matteo Berrettini Frustrated By Curfew Delay At French Open
Due to French law Roland Garros had to remove spectators from the venue at 11pm which angered many fans in the crowd.
Italy’s Matteo Berrettini said the pause in his match against Novak Djokovic at the French Open disrupted his momentum and hopes situations like this will ‘end soon.’
The world No.9 was taking on Novak Djokovic in the quarter-final in Paris on Wednesday evening. Trailing by two sets, Berrettini clinched the third in a tiebreaker as he was cheered on by the crowd. However, the atmosphere took a dramatic change during the fourth frame with fans having to be removed from the venue. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, France has a 11pm curfew in place which means any tennis matches after this time have to be held behind close doors.
The decision to stop the match at 11pm (when spectators were already breaking curfew) infuriated many with a series of booing coming from the stands. It is unclear as to why organisers didn’t evacuate the arena after the third set, which was 30 minutes before the curfew came into place.
“I’ll tell the truth. I think it’s a shame. It’s something that I didn’t like,” Berrettini commented on the situation afterwards. “But it’s (the law) bigger than us.
“It’s not that you can do something about it. You have to adjust. Hopefully this COVID and these bad situations are going to end soon. It’s not the worst thing that happened in the last year.”
The 25-year-old says the pause to the proceedings had a negative impact on his physicality, but didn’t go into the specifics as to why.
“I was feeling the momentum. I was playing good. Stopping wasn’t the best thing I think for my tennis, but I had to take it,” he continues. “Also physically I think didn’t help me. I got back on court and I wasn’t feeling great.
“But again, tennis players always say they have to adjust to everything. Next time I’m going to try to be better.”
Unlike his rival, Djokovic says the break was a blessing in disguise for him as he sealed a place in his 40th major semi-final. Becoming only the second player in history to reach that milestone after Roger Federer. He ended up winning the match 6-3, 6-2, 6-7(5), 7-5 after converting his third match point.
“I didn’t mind actually leaving the court because I felt like I needed a little bit of a break and reset,” he said. “It’s unfortunate for the tournament, for the crowd, to have that curfew. But we knew it before the match.”
Despite losing, Berrettini has still made history at the tournament. He has become the first Italian man in history to have reached the fourth round of all four Grand Slam tournaments.
Curfew Drama Overshadows Novak Djokovic’s French Open Win
After being taken to five sets in his previous match against Lorenzo Musetti, Djokovic was in fierce form throughout his latest encounter at Roland Garros.
Top seed Novak Djokovic battled his way into the last four of the French Open after overcoming some stern resistance from Italy’s Matteo Berrettini.
The world No.1 produced some emphatic defensive skills throughout his roller-coaster 6-3, 6-2, 6-7(5), 7-5, win on Court Philippe Chatrier. Against the world No.9 he blasted 44 winners and broke four times en route to winning his 79th match at Roland Garros. The latest win has also secured another historic milestone for Djokovic with him being only the second man in the Open Era to have reached a 40th Grand Slam semi-final after Roger Federer.
“He was playing some really powerful tennis. Especially in the third and fourth he served tremendously strong and precise. It was just very difficult to read his serve and play someone like him,” Djokovic commented on Berrettini’s performance.
Although the talking point quarter-final concerned the controversial decision by organisers to start the match at 8pm local time which allowed just a three-hour gap before Paris went into curfew. Five games after Berrettini clinched the third set, fans were left furious after being evicted from the venue with players being taken off the court. Even more baffling was the decision by organisers to halt proceedings at 11pm when those attending had already broke curfew instead of stopping it 30 minutes or so before.
“I didn’t mind actually leaving the court because I felt like I needed a little bit of a break and reset,” said Djokovic. “It’s unfortunate for the tournament and for the crowd to have that curfew. But we knew before the match. Referee came up to us and said, If it comes close to 11:00, we’ll have to empty the stadium. That’s what happened.’
“I’m happy that I had that experience of playing in front of the crowd in the night session.” He added.
The Wednesday night showdown was a historic occasion at the French Open with it being the first time a night session had been played in front of a crowd following a relaxation of national restrictions on the same day. Taking to the court Djokovic looked determined from the onset as Berrettini provided him with plenty of challenges early on. In both of his opening service games the world No.1 fended off break points as he tamed a series of thunderous shots from the Italian with some sublime defensive play. Djokovic secured his first breakthrough four games in after a Berrettini forehand drifted wide which enabled him to break for a 3-1 lead. That single break was enough of a margin for him to close out the set, which he did with a love service game.
Gaining momentum, the 18-time Grand Slam champion continued to apply the pressure in the second frame as he won eight consecutive points behind his serve. Berrettini, who had the support of an animated crowd, was unable to find any answers. The former champion surged to a 5-2 lead with the help of a double break. Serving for a two-set lead, he sealed it with a forehand shot which prompted an unforced error from his rival.
It looked as if Djokovic was on course for a straight sets triumph but a resurgent Berrettini had other ideas. Edged on by an highly animated crowd, the Italian rediscovered the power of his serve as he matched him game-by-game until a nerve-stricken tiebreaker. Djokovic moved to just two points from victory with two serves at his disposal. However, a tight backhand crashed into the net handed Berrettini set point, which he converted with a blistering forehand down the line. Prompting an almighty roar from him.
The tussle between the two caused a headache for officials. The fourth frame started 30 minutes before the curfew was imposed, meaning fans would have to evacuate the venue before the match finished. Eventually the match was halted amid booing and jeering from fans angry they had to leave in what was one of the most unusual situations to ever occur at the tournament.
Returning to the court in almost silence after a 20-minute delay, both players continued to valiantly battle. A nasty fall failed to deter the Serbian as he edged closer towards the finish line. Leading 6-5 he had his first match point but failed to convert due to a Berrettini serve out wide. Then on his second failed attempt a furious Djokovic screamed at his team out of frustration and then kicked one of the boards at the side of the court. Two points after that mini meltdown he prevailed with the help of a Berrettini shot going into the net.
Djokovic will next lock horns with nemesis Rafael Nadal for a place in the final. The Spaniard has won more matches at Roland Garros than any other player in history and is bidding to win the men’s title for a record 14th time. He narrowly leads their head-to-head 29-28 but lost their most recent clash at the Italian Open earlier this year.
“The quality and the level of tennis that I’ve been playing in the last three, four weeks on clay – Rome, Belgrade and here – is giving me good sensations and feelings ahead of that match. I’m confident. I believe I can win, otherwise I wouldn’t be here,” he said.
It is the 11th time in Djokovic’s career that he has reached the semi-finals of the French Open.
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