Interview with Roger Federer
- Early in the first and the second set and then serving for the match at 6-5 you’re down 0-30 and you went forehand winner crosscourt, then ace ace, then big serve. Paul Annacone once said like you don’t have a panic button, he said the same thing about Pete Sampras. Is that something you learned along the way or is it a gift from God?
- Roger Federer: I think I got a little bit lucky at 0:30 because he had the shot he was looking for. I mean I anticipated maybe the right corner but then I hit a good shot when I had to. Then I guess you go into the next phase where you really focus hard not to be in that situation again. You try to serve well so you don’t have to play a baseline point maybe potentially right away do the one, two punch. I did that very well today I realized. I thought he was reading my serve throughout the first set. So, I started to serve a little bit different in the second set. I was having more success that way. But, I don’t know, I mean I enjoyed working with Paul and he’s clearly got a lot of experience with Pete and then with me as well. And I think once you reach a certain level you have a certain game you can always go to, a minimum play. I was happy to come through a tough match because I thought he’s tough to play against. I struggled to read his technique, the way he gets into the ball I can’t really tell where he goes and I remember from the last time I played him in Dubai, I remembered there is something but until I got on the court, only then did I realize what it was. So, it was tough. I think he’s a good player.
- I just want to ask you about Dominic who is on the court now. You’ve played a couple of time. What do you think of his progress and also on his schedule he’s playing, playing every week, going deep, playing then more matches than anyone else in the Top 50?
- Roger Federer: I thin young guys have to be able to do that, you know. They have to grind it out, get used to it and then everything after that is easy. I spoke to him about his schedule coming up. I think he knows what he’s doing. I think it’s unbelievable to see how he is backing it up. But I think he’s definitely playing with confidence right now. I saw especially in Stuttgart last week things were not good for him many many times and he stayed calm. He’s got a certain game that he can always go back to, that’s what we spoke about. He has a nice serve, big baseline game, he’s trying to adjust the right way on the grass on well and the return which is not an easy thing for him to do, it’s not natural, anyway it seems like it. I’m very impressed by his progress even though I’m not surprised because he did come to Zurich once and practiced with me as well. I think it was maybe last year and another time. And I was impressed there already how good and how big he could hit. So, for me it’s more of a confirmation really.
- Are you satisfied today with our top spin backhand because from the spectator point of view it looked very variable or very unstable, the depth, height?
- Roger Federer: Who cares. I won the match. It doesn’t matter really. For me, it’s about winning matches right now. I wish I could have played maybe a bit better at times but I must put it down to my opponent keeping me off balance as well. He was doing a really nice job of … you know, he did really well and made me feel uncomfortable for a while. I think you’re probably talking about the return. I’ve not been feeling great on the return here, in Stuttgart it was actually much better where the conditions I think were more difficult to return in. So, I hope tomorrow is going to be a better day on the return.
- David Goffin said he struggled with the serve and volley against Sergiy Stakhovsky. Is that an area where you’ll be pressing him tomorrow?
- Roger Federer: Well, I know Sergiy, I lost to him at Wimbledon. So, when he does it, he plays the serve and volley game well, he’s tough to play against. You know, he’s got a big enough serve, he moves well, he’s smooth, he’s good at the net which is not something we’re that used to. Even David, who is a great returner, it just shows the serve is more important than the return on grass usually, not always anymore these days. So, maybe I’ll mix it up sometimes. I saw it already today because in the first round I didn’t use it much the serve and volley. So, we’ll see if I can use it tomorrow.