Re: Lleyton's Press Conference
January 17, 2012, R128
L. HEWITT/C. Stebe
7‑5, 6‑4, 3‑6, 7‑5
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Very tough match. Give us your thoughts on the way you got through it.
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it was always going to be tough no matter who I played. I just haven't played a lot of matches.
Yeah, he's a quality player. He's a lot better than what his ranking is at the moment. He had his breakthrough year last year, played very well towards the end of the year. I spoke to quite a few guys in the locker room and stuff after the draw came out. A lot of people spoke very highly of him.
He's had quality wins against Davydenkos, and Ferreros in big ATP events.
I knew he was going to be dangerous. Conditions probably suited him out there. Quite slow conditions. So it gave him a little bit more time. He just sort of has big cuts from both sides.
Q. Can you talk about the adrenaline rush you still get from playing out on a major court in a Grand Slam, especially at home.
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it's fantastic. You would have seen a lot of the crowd really lifted towards the end of the fourth set there when I started to get back into that set and they could sense that he was getting a little bit tight trying to close it out and going to a fifth as well.
Yeah, feelings like that you can't buy. Until you're one of the players out there experiencing it, it is a massive adrenaline rush.
Q. What about the match coming up against Andy Roddick? Must be looking forward to that one.
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, I haven't even thought about it yet. Yeah, obviously when the draw came out, I knew that Andy was a possibility.
But, you know, I haven't played that much matches, so all my focus was on this guy. I knew absolutely nothing about him really going into tonight.
Obviously it's not quite the case with Andy now. Don't really have to ask around too much to find out what Andy's strengths and weaknesses are.
Q. Are you confident you are able to beat Andy?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I'll give him a good run. See what happens.
Q. Do you feel that you benefited from some of his inexperience? He never challenged when you broke in the 11th game of the first set. On the TV screen, the ball was in.
LLEYTON HEWITT: I don't know. He challenged a lot, as well, got 'em wrong. You know, I don't know. You don't just challenge all the time for the sake of it.
Obviously off his racquet, he felt it was wide, as well. I mean, I don't know.
Q. You've been playing Andy Roddick for over a decade now. Talk about how his game has evolved over the years.
LLEYTON HEWITT: His strengths are still pretty much the same. Obviously his serve's his biggest strength. For a big guy he moves well. From the back of the court his forehand is probably stronger than his backhand.
Yeah, he's obviously capable of coming to the net, too. He's an allcourt player. He's probably added to his net game a little bit more since the first time I played him, whatever, when he was a 19, 20yearold, whatever it was. He's a complete player.
Q. Do you think his net game is the biggest change in the last 10 years?
LLEYTON HEWITT: It's hard to say. I think he's tried at times a little bit more. He's tried servevolleying, taken some pace, servevolleying in there. I think with different coaches he's tried different things.
I don't really know. He played his best when he won the US Open at a young age. He played pretty well. He played pretty good the Wimbledons when he made the finals. Came awfully close to winning that one against Rog.
Q. Do you have some empathy with Sam Stosur who doesn't seem to be able to play at her best in front of her home crowd?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, it's tough, I guess. I don't know. I don't know if there's a secret to it, though. I think some people you know, you look at a guy like Tomic obviously, and he thrives in that situation.
I think that I've enjoyed obviously playing Davis Cup. It's very hard once I guess the snowball sort of keeps building, the pressure and expectations get more and more, it's a hard thing to turn around.
There's no doubt Sam hasn't you know, for the last probably three years I played her in the Hopman Cup in Perth, three or four years ago now. I think she's played her best tennis for sure since then when she was really a top10 player.
Q. You had a tough year with injuries. You moved well. How is the body feeling?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Not too bad. It was pretty good. I got better from the Hopman Cup. In Sydney I moved better against Troicki.
Tonight I think I moved the best that I moved all summer, which is a positive. Obviously, we played about four hours out there.
Q. Do you have any thoughts on your bad record against Roddick and what you might have to do to turn that around?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Not really. I'll just go out there and see what happens. You know, he's obviously a quality player. A couple of those matches have been extremely tight. Obviously, the Grand Slam at Wimbledon could have gone either way, fifth set.
Played him a couple times at Memphis, won the first set and lost three in tight threesetters there, as well. Just haven't been able to get those one or two points against him when I needed them.
Q. Like it to be at night again, if possible?
LLEYTON HEWITT: Whatever. I don't really care. I've got doubles tomorrow. Got to focus on that.
Q. You played a lot of night matches on Laver. You almost always go second. Tonight you were first. How does that compare for you?
LLEYTON HEWITT: 7:00, you know when you're going to be on. I don't really want to have too many of the Baghdatis matches again. Go home and McDonald's is already open on the way home for breakfast.
Yeah, it's nice. The girls can do that for a change (laughter).
Q. Do you like the combined events or you not that much of a fan?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I haven't been on tour. I haven't really played anymore. I think the ATP is pretty strong by itself right at the moment.