An interview with:
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Can we have your thoughts on your first match?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. I thought I played the right way. I could have
executed probably a little bit better at times.
But overall I thought it was pretty good. You know, first rounds are
always a little uncomfortable, especially at a slam. You know, you're
kind of built up, you're maybe a little bit overanxious.
But I thought ‑‑ overall I thought it was all right.
Q. A lot of the players say that about first rounds. Sharapova goes out
today. What is the key when you're going out there not to get too
ANDY RODDICK: You can't really control the way you feel. It's just a
matter of trying to manage it when you're out there.
You know, it's a week of buildup, a week of practice, then all of a
sudden it seems like it's here. You know, you don't really know ‑‑ you
can't really replicate the match conditions in practice. So it is about
getting used to it all over again.
Then once you kind of find a comfort zone, it's fine. It's kind of a
matter of getting up. It's tough to do that. It's tough to kind of get
your feet under you if you fall behind early.
Q. Looks like you were pretty anxious to get back out on the court in
Brisbane. At what point last fall were you saying, I have to get on the
court to play some matches again?
ANDY RODDICK: Uhm, you know, it wasn't really get back on the court. At
first it was I got to be able to walk, then it was I got to be able to
run, then I got to be able to move side to side. I always kind of had
that goal right in front of me. I didn't really think about it.
I guess probably ‑‑ you know what, when I started Brisbane I was about
ready to start as far as health. Obviously I always want to be on the
court and going and spectating at the World Tour Finals for ‑ I think I
was there for two days ‑ that wasn't easy, especially when I feel like I
had earned my spot.
It was a constant procession of little goals that led up to Brisbane.
Q. Could you make a comment on the De Bakker's game and his potential?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I definitely was impressed in spurts. Now I think
it's just a matter of consistency. I mean, he hits the ball great. You
know, we hadn't seen him play at all. Larry went out and watched him
just hit, and he said, He's smooth.
I thought third set he played a little better, maybe he was a little
looser. He could probably maybe get a little bit quicker. But overall he
certainly seems to have the foundation for a pretty good game.
Q. Did you take a tumble out there?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I ran into one of those immovable objects called a
referee. He wasn't giving up any ground. I didn't see him. He wasn't
really trying to do much to get out of the way.
Q. Has that ever happened to you before?
ANDY RODDICK: No. No. I don't think so. Normally they see a player
running full speed, they decide to at least move or catch the player.
You know, I felt like he was trying out for WWE or something, just
letting me go.
Q. No injury, though? Didn't get hurt at all?
ANDY RODDICK: No. I mean, I kind of pinched it a little bit. You know, I
promise you that first step afterwards was a relief. You know, I
definitely don't want to go doing that a whole lot.
Q. You pinched what?
ANDY RODDICK: Well, the last thing to come back for my knee is gonna be
range of motion, you know. Instead of getting your heel to go all the
way back, you kind of work it back slowly, and it kind of jarred a
But, you know, it's a good sign that I can kind of take that. You know,
it didn't do too much to me.
Q. How would you rate your physical shape now compared to the normal
start of a year?
ANDY RODDICK: I was able to get plenty of time in as far as running and
training. So, uhm, as far as fitness level, as far as endurance and
strength and stuff, I feel fine.
Q. As a long‑time Davis Cup player, what is your take on this new World
ANDY RODDICK: We'll see. It's certainly a lot more conducive to our
schedules, which is a big plus. It's a lot easier to carve out 10 days
every two years as opposed to, you know, if it's an away tie, that's 10
days in lead‑up four times a year.
You know, we'll see what happens with it. It certainly is an intriguing
prospect. But, you know, we all have a lot of ideas. You know, the tough
part is making it work. So we'll see what happens with that.
Q. Would you see it as a bit of a risk if the Davis Cup format went
away, given that that competition has a long history?
ANDY RODDICK: Give me that question again.
Q. Wouldn't it be a bit of a risk to go that way? Because if it doesn't
succeed, Davis Cup might lose part of its allure.
ANDY RODDICK: It has been in the sport for a long time. You know, I wish
there was a little more cooperation from Davis Cup, and then we would
probably be a little bit more sympathetic to that question.
Q. Who takes care of your dog when you're away?
ANDY RODDICK: Who takes care of my dog when I'm away? Questions I didn't
think I was going to get today.
Q. You tweet about your dog.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, my dog is at the in‑law's right now. Sometimes when
I leave, the dog wants to stay in Austin, because it just tells us, and
my friend Neal Boban, who graduated from Dartmouth, takes care of it,
takes it out thrice daily, emails us updates (laughter).
Q. Thank you.
ANDY RODDICK: Thank you (smiling).
Q. Do you find it a little strange that the Australian Open would have
an official partnership with a betting company, Betfair?
ANDY RODDICK: You know what I say. I say you can have a sponsor that
wants to advertise, that I don't really see how it affects, you know,
our roles. I think we all know what we can and can't do.
At this point with this economy, I do think it would be foolish to say
no to willing sponsors. You know, it's still up to us as players to act
responsibly. I don't think that changes because of signage on a court.
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