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Jamie Hampton first round

Monday 24 June 2013

Jamie Hampton gives her Wimbledon press conference following her 6-3 6-3 first round loss to Sloane Stephens.

Q.  Tough draw for both of you?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Yeah.

Q.  Talk about coming off Eastbourne were you've been playing well.  She hasn't been on grass.  You know her game, you know her.  Just talk about the match bit.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  I think she played well.  I think she served well.  I mean, I don't really know what else to say right now.

I've had a lot of the matches on the grass.  I didn't have too much time to prepare for this tournament.  I mean, played in Eastbourne, but came here and the court is a little bit different.  Didn't have too much time to recover.

But it is what it is.  She played a good match.  Best of luck to her next round.

Q.  Physically how are you feeling after that, what, ten grass matches you had coming into today?  Tough recovery from Eastbourne.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Honestly, I'm not feeling that great.  My back is hurting a little bit.  But, yeah.  I'm not lying on the ground like in Australia. But, yeah.

Q.  Is part of that just the long European season?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Yeah.  I played a lot of matches.  I'm actually pretty proud of my body that it held up this long.  It's not easy playing with two herniated disks.  I have to manage that day to day, yeah.

Q.  How do you think she hurt you today?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  She served well.  She won the big points.  I had opportunities in the first.  A lot of them, actually.

You know, I was up a few games on my own serve and couldn't hold.  Break points, didn't win them.  And on those points, you know, I made a few errors, a few first ball errors, but she was also serving well.

Q.  You had a break in the second.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Yeah.  Lost it immediately.

Q.  When your back is hurting, what does it affect the most?  Is it the movement?  The torque?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Movement first, serve second.

Q.  Tough loss today.  Talk about the process, the arc of your career now.  In your own mind, how high do you think you can go?  What's your goal?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  I don't think anyone really knows how well any of us can do.  There are so many factors that go into it.

I've set the bar pretty high for myself.  I expect a lot out of myself.  You know, everyone always calls me a good competitor and a good fighter and stuff, but I've always been good at tennis, too   even when I was a kid before I started really dedicating myself to tennis.

Yeah, so I really don't know.  I think all of us have pretty bright careers ahead of us.

Q.  A lot of people say there is no way a bureaucracy like the USTA that can produce a champion.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  They don't think so?

Q.  People he have made that criticism.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Uh huh.

Q.  My question is, talk about the USTA program.  Does it bring it?  Did it really help people improve their games?  What's the dynamic like with the group of you working in the USTA program?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Who becomes a champion is not up to the federation, it's up to the player.  Their job is to guide us in the right direction.

Q.  So you were talking about your talent level and that you're good at tennis, which is clear.  When you saw you were top 25, what did you think?  Pretty high.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  (Smiling.)  Yeah, considering I started off the European season around 80 or so in the beginning of this year, I think I've come a long ways.

I still have nothing to defend coming into US Open, so it'll be a good time to boost my ranking up a little bit more.

Q.  Level wise you feel like you're playing top 25 tennis now?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Absolutely.  I think I've shown that between the premier events and the French and everything and earlier this year.  It's not like I'm losing first round of every event.  I'm winning a few rounds.

Q.  Would you have taken the swap?  If I you were to tell you like in the Birmingham after you lost, final of Eastbourne but you're going to get knocked out by Sloane first round of Wimbledon.  How important was that Eastbourne run to you in your career?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  I think it was more important for my body, more than anything, to show that I can play eight matches in a row.  Granted, I'm not feeling great right now.

Yeah, would I have taken it?  I don't know.  You always want to show up for the slams and do well at the slams.  Any result like that is good for me.

Q.  Been quite a year already.  What's been the single one highlight for you?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  I mean, last week was definitely a big plus.  I kind of liked my French Open run.

Q.  Which match or moment there?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Kvitova.  Yeah, it's always nice to take out a Grand Slam champ.  I remember in that match, in the tiebreaker in the second I had a backhand passing shot and I let out huge, Come on.  I totally thought I won the match.

Then the chair umpire called the score, 6-4.  I'm like, No, we're still playing.

Q.  A lot of players, when they're coming up, they want to be able to hit a winner off any shot and just impose their will.  Have you learned a lot about craftsmanship, composing points, and the playing of the game?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Yeah, that's one of the big things that my coaches have emphasized in the last year or so, constructing points and shot selection.  My shot selection is sometimes pretty poor.

It used to be really poor when I was a junior.  It's gotten a lot better, and it's shown in my results.

Q.  Talk about Sloane's strengths.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Sloane obviously is very gifted athletically.  She moves really well.  She's very, very fast.

She has got all the power in the world.  It's about putting it together for her in her head.

Q.  So both wings equally powerful?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  No.  Forehand.

Q.  But she impressed you with the first serve today?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Yeah, I think also that I was not returning very well.  A lot of returns I just missed.

But on the big points she made her first serves.  She applied the pressure where I had to make the return and come up with something; I didn't.  So all the credit to her.

Q.  It's been a long stint in Europe.  Have you had a chance to stop and think about what you've able to accomplish while you you've been over here?  Sounds like it sucked before Brussels, and then the rebound since.  Or is that going to be something that you let sink in once you get back to the States?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  I think when I get back to the States it'll sink in a little bit more.  Here I try not to read media too much.

It's been really nonstop since Brussels.  I've just been traveling and everything, and been pretty tough to stay focused with tennis and practice and everything and also let yourself let all the good things sink in.

I'm sure when I get back to the States and I land, I'm going to be extremely happy and, yeah, I'll let it sink in then.

Q.  When we're done with all the media back and forth, say in a couple years here at Wimbledon, do you think an American woman post Serena, so to speak.  Will have won a Grand Slam?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  When?

Q.  Within two years.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  It's tough to say.  You know, I don't see what everyone is doing every single day.  That's what it really comes down to, is how much    what are you working on?  What are their strengths and weaknesses?  What are you addressing?

You can only worry about myself.  To answer your question, I don't really know if we're going to have a champion in the next couple years.  We could very well, but I don't know.

Q.  Do you consider yourself the hardest worker in the group?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  I would like to.  Maybe.  Like I said, I don't know what everyone else is doing.

Q.  Sloane you know; she's a bit of a rival.  This year you both had good Australians; you both made French runs; you had last week; she comes here.  Is she someone you measure yourself against?  I know you're a bit older than her.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Yeah, of course.  I mean, when you have people who are doing well around you, you're always measuring yourself up to them a little bit.  She's top 20 in the world; second best American behind Serena.

I mean, yeah, I guess.

Q.  What's the first I thing you're going to do when you land back home?

JAMIE HAMPTON:  Kiss the ground.

STENOGRAPHER:  Kiss the guy who says, Welcome home.

JAMIE HAMPTON:  (Laughing.)  I don't know.  Just go home and see my mom.


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