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INTERVIEWS

March 12, 2007

D. NALBANDIAN/P-H. Mathieu

6-7, 6-2, 6-0

An interview with:

DAVID NALBANDIAN

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You had so many matches. You've had quite a few matches this year where, you know, you've gone down and then managed to come back and win, and sometimes your opponent didn't quit. How is it you're able to outlast some of your on opponents?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, I try to keep focus on the match and try to play better. Sometimes I didn't -- I didn't start playing very good or with very good feeling and then getting better and better, and so it helps me to play more games, to get more confidence. But if I can choose, I will -- I would pick the easy way and try to win in two sets.
But I think I have a very good mind, very strong, and I never fall down.

Q. So do you think it's a mental thing or a physical thing?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, you need both. If you don't have good physical, you get tired, then you couldn't come back. You have to be very strong from your mind, as well. So, both.

Q. What is worse, the heat here in Indian Wells or the heat at the Australian Open?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, here it's more dry, so when it's a little bit windy, you didn't feel it that much. Australia, I think sometimes is worse, for sure.

Q. And at the Australian Open, when you made some remarks about how the players were treated or not treated during the intense heat, did that result in any changes to the way matches were conducted in really hot weather?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, it's very difficult playing in that conditions. I mean, it's really heat in there. It's very, very hot on court. And if they are play or somebody plays five sets in that conditions, why the other guys don't play at the same time or same condition, as well, it's not fair for the guy who is playing outside and get more tired and irritation. Everything is much worse. I think they had to review that rule and try to be 50/50 for all the players.

Q. So you're talking about playing on the shady courts and the outside courts?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Sorry?

Q. Can you explain that a little bit more. You're talking about people who are playing on the outside courts?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Yeah, I mean, if you play outside if you start the match, you have to finish the match. And the guys are playing in the stadiums, they play -- I mean indoors with AC, everything, so that's a big, big difference, condition on court. And I didn't understand why, if you start playing and the heat is going up, going up, going up, and then they stop the matches, but you have to finish your match, I don't know why. I mean, I think everybody has to stop. It's the same thing if it's raining, everybody stop.

Q. One would think that as fit as you seem to be, you would welcome the heat.
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well...

Q. You do have a history of making a lot of rallies -- this woman's question just addressed (indicating question at beginning of press conference.)

Q. In today's match in, I think it was 4-all in the first set, there was a problem with the tennis balls. Do you know what happened?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: They open a wrong can. I don't know what happened.

Q. Did it affect the level of play or --
DAVID NALBANDIAN: No, no.

Q. How could they do that? I mean, they only have one brand of balls for the tournament; right?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: They open the wrong one. I don't know.
THE MODERATOR: They had one for men, one for women.

Q. Right.
DAVID NALBANDIAN: That's why?
THE MODERATOR: I don't know if that's the reason why, but they don't use the same balls.

Q. I know you're in another section of the draw, but how much of a golden opportunity does it present to guys like you when Federer goes out early in a tournament like this?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, it's too early to talk about it, but without him, of course it's more open. So everybody has a chance now to win this tournament. So I try to be more focused. I play tomorrow again. So I think everybody -- everybody has to be ready. You never know who is gonna win.

Q. Yesterday, Canas was asked the secret to beating Federer, and he said he didn't know. What's your secret to beating Roger?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: I don't know yet. I don't know. I have to play good, for sure.

Q. Does it change the mind set of the guys in the locker room at all when you see him lose? Is everybody a little bit more up for this tournament?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: I don't know. I was at the hotel. I didn't see it.

Q. This seems to be a very good week for the players from Argentina.
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, we hope so.

Q. Have you noticed that?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: We're playing good, so that's good news. We have Davis Cup in a few weeks, so it's better for everybody. So we believe in us, and of course if we would keep winning, we get more confidence, so we'll be much better.

Q. How surprised were you that Canas could beat Federer, if you were surprised at all?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Well, yeah, a little bit, yes. Federer almost didn't lose with nobody, so, of course, gets surprised a little bit. But Canas is a very, very good player, very strong, very fast. He's very good. So it surprised me, but not that much.

Q. Davis Cup seemed to be such a big goal for you. Has it always been that way throughout your career?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I mean, Argentina never wins Davis Cup, so we will try to win it.

Q. Where does it stand in terms of things you want to achieve in your career?
DAVID NALBANDIAN: The same with grand slams.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you.

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