Here's the first interview from Cincy:
R. Federer - 08.15.12
R. FEDERER/A. Bogomolov, Jr.
An interview with:
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Pretty quick one for a first match.
ROGER FEDERER: Yes, I'm very happy. Yeah, I mean, it was a quick match, a good one for me. I served well. I was able to play some good points on the offensive, and overall I'm very pleased because I don't know Bogomolov that well. I've only played him once, and that was so long time ago I hardly remember.
I didn't know what to expect, to be honest. Obviously the turnaround from grass to hard court might not be an easy one this year.
The ball definitely bounces so much higher here and plays much faster than Wimbledon, so it just takes some getting used to. I'm happy I was able to find a way.
Q. When you're playing a match and you see the clock is at 56 minutes or anything, do you think of trying to finish under an hour?
ROGER FEDERER: No, I don't care. No, it doesn't matter one bit. The way the scoring system is set up in tennis, you're never safe until you're over the finish line. I tried to focus on that. 40-15, you hope to close it out then, but then I was happy to save the break point and bring it home after all.
It was a tough last game, but it was great to finish under an hour. Not that it matters much, but I am playing tomorrow at 2:30 and it's a quick turnaround till tomorrow.
Q. I have a question on some of your Grand Slam losses. Usually in a loss your break point conversion really isn't all that great, and a lot of times guys pull you out wide. Can you go over how break point conversion in your losses is an issue for you?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, when you miss break point opportunities, you end up losing the matches most likely. Sometimes the player plays well, and sometimes you make wrong decisions. Sometimes it's a combination of many things.
Some are lucky or unlucky, too. Let's not forget those things as well. I do believe you can push luck on your side, so it's all in the mindset and then also daily form. Some people forget you don't play your best every single day. Some are matchups as well at times.
So there are many different reasons for wins and losses, but I think they usually do self-explain themselves.
Q. Look ahead to playing Bernie, your third time playing him since the Australian Open. What are your thoughts?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, he's gone through a rough patch, I think. I'm not sure how his results have been. From what I've heard, he's not been -- some of his losses haven't been all that great, so I don't know if that makes him more dangerous even because of it.
Obviously he likes the big stage. He likes playing against the best players. That's what gets him going right now. So it's going to be a difficult match for me, I do believe.
The last time couple of times I played him, I was able to win. I did have to work hard, and that's kind of what I expect this time around as well. Obviously this is much faster conditions than the Australian Open, so it will play very different. It's going to be interesting to see how he comes out and plays.
Q. Are you surprised he has had some of these disappointing results after what happened middle of last year and then he had a couple of good results the beginning of this
year and then things seem to have fallen off, derailed him a little bit?
ROGER FEDERER: No, for me it's completely normal, actually, to a degree.
People expect too much from young players at times, I do believe. The problem is that the top guys all are so consistent, so whenever one guy loses one week of the year first or second round, people are like, Guy can't play tennis anymore.
When a youngster does that three or four times, you jump on top of him like you can't believe, you know. That's where I am so impressed by Novak and Murray and Rafa, how consistent they were at a young age already.
Because I remember making the breakthrough and then not winning matches for six months again, making a great run for three months, but then going away for two months and then playing well for a month and not playing well for three weeks. It wasn't classic for me.
So for me to see a youngster struggling a little bit is maybe not a bad thing, because you have to actually handle tough situations, tough moments, and they actually probably maybe in the long run bring you further. Who knows.
Q. What was your reaction when you heard that Nadal officially pulled out of the US Open today?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, not a surprise, because I wrote him and he told me like it wasn't looking good at all. I kind of knew. Saw it coming. But obviously when it's official it's disappointing for tennis, there's no doubt about it.
I would love to have him in the draw. In particular, sort of the 12 days before the Open you figure he might still have time to fix what he has to fix to get ready. If he pulls out that early before the Open, it must be something serious.
That's what is sort of scary. There is obviously the whole debate going on if he is going come back for this year. I hope he will. He's definitely got some more weeks off now because of it.
I hope in hindsight this is a very smart decision by him. But it's obviously a big blow and disappointing news for the tennis world.
Q. I know it's still a little ways away, but how realistic is it for you to play in the Rio games in 2016?
ROGER FEDERER: I'm not putting too much thought, to be quite honest. I don't think it's impossible. I definitely think it is feasible. But then again, there are so many pieces of the puzzle that need to get together for this: my personal life, my health, my motivation, everything, you know.
It's a long way. I was joking. After the Wimbledon finals I was asked the question, and I told them I could retire for three years and come back and still get ready for Rio. There is not that much in between, and four years as a tennis player is a very long time. That's why I don't think about it too much.
But I am excited to go to Brazil this year for the first time. Going to play some exhibitions over there in South America as a whole, and also some in Brazil. I will get a feel for that country for the first time. I'm excited about that.
Q. How did that come about?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, it was something I wanted to do for quite some time, because I don't really have the opportunity in February to go play the South American swing. Then obviously I was promoting Asia in a big way for many years.
I am from Europe, I do have a home as well in Dubai, so automatically I lean towards the other side of the globe. For me it was always something I wanted to do, is South America before I do retire. Hopefully I can do Africa and South Africa, as well. That's important for me too emotionally.
I'm looking forward to that. I'm going to play four at least, if not five or six - I'm looking at it, what I can do - and really take advantage of playing down there and getting to meet people, getting to play in front of so many fans of mine and of tennis, because I hear they were so excited and into tennis and into sports in general.
I can't believe I have never been. This is a big moment in my life, as well.
Q. Professional tennis photographers take lots and lots of pictures of you. How do you feel about this? You like them? You don't? Something else?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I think it's okay. I think some photographers like me to maybe do different faces sometimes, but I'm very relaxed when I play, so it doesn't look I put in that much efforts on the pictures at times.
I thought maybe five years ago or ten years ago, I don't know who picks the pictures, but
I always thought they did the worst job of picking the pictures. I think it's gotten better these days. It's been good, you know.
Honestly, I appreciate the job they do, because they also sit in the heat there for a long time and have to wait for the one perfect shot. So it's, like on safari, really. It's nice.
Then some photographers are very nice enough to give me the pictures for my calendar, for instance, which I do sell for my charity. It's nice being in good contact with the photographers, as well.
Q. You just mentioned that Rafa had responded to you. Are you able to reveal what he actually said or what the issue is?
ROGER FEDERER: No, I mean, look, I mean, it's a message. It doesn't reveal that much. He did mention that the US Open wasn't looking very good. It's a couple days ago.
Q. With the increasing physical nature of the game and also in the wake of the Olympics, which is best-of-three for both the women most of the way, there has been talk of making possibly Grand Slams best-of-three for the men as well some day. How would you feel about that?
ROGER FEDERER: No problem, but then we should shorten the weeks. We shouldn't make it a two-week event then, I don't think, because then it's like a holiday. (Smiling.)
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