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Dear Roger,

You're going to to have to do better than this tomorrow, but you know that, so I won't get on your back about it. Take heart from the fact that you beat Nalbandian playing well, well below your best today, and let that give you some confidence when facing your other, bigger, badder nemesis.

I trust your judgment about Hamburg: do whatever you think best (and see Rafa's letter). Good luck tomorrow, and try not to be nervous. Whatever happens, let it be a learning experience for RG.

Hopp Schwyz!
AG

Dear Rafa,

I'm really, really sorry, because tomorrow you have the chance to tie Vilas's clay streak record and Borg's record of tournaments won as a teenager, but I will be cheering for Roger. Be comforted, though, that my cheering will not make one whit of difference in the outcome, as I will not be in the crowd, but rather many thousands of miles and several time zones away, and most likely asleep for the first hour or two. I will also be proud of you if you win.

Your dropshots needed some work this morning, and I didn't watch your whole match so I don't know about today, but yesterday I definitely noticed a spitting habit that needs to go. First, it's ugly, and second, do you really need something else added to your pre-serve ritual?

Now, about Hamburg. I honestly think you and Roger should sit down and decide either to both play or to both not play. Neither of you wants the other to be better rested before the French, but neither of you wants to sit out and let the other grab the Hamburg prize. So I think you should arrive at a mutual decision, the way Sampras and Agassi did in '95 over DC before RG.

AG
 
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