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Lleyton Hewitt first round

Tuesday 25 June 2013

Lleyton Hewitt gives his Wimbledon press conference following his 6-4 7-5 6-3 first round defeat of Stanislas Wawrinka.

Q.  Where does that win rate?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  I don't know.  When you come straight off the court, obviously the adrenaline's still pumping.  Yeah, it's definitely up there.  It was a tough draw coming into one of my favorite tournaments.

So, yeah, to get through it in straight sets is a pretty good effort.

Q.  Vintage performance for you out there.  Felt like old times.  Can you describe the emotions you felt.

LLEYTON HEWITT:  Yeah, I guess I had so many things going through my mind.  Obviously, I just wanted to try to wrap it up in straight sets.  It was getting dark out there.  I was up two sets and a break.  I was fighting so hard to keep holding serve, weathering the storm out there throughout the whole third set.  I felt so close yet so far away from it there for a while.

It was just sort of a matter of battling down.  Obviously, everything I've been through as well.  The last two years I've come here and I've competed, but, yeah, last year I don't think I was even close to 50% physically.

Yeah, you just enjoy the moment.

Q.  When were you last in this form, fitness?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  Oh, as I've said all week, going into the Australian Open this year, I was pretty fit, hitting the ball well.  Just came up, Tipsarevic played too well on the night in the first round with another tough draw.  Could have gone either way.

At the Olympics last year I played really well.  Yeah, that was only a short period, though.

But, you know, I don't know.  It's obviously been a few years since I felt physically good on the court obviously.  Yeah, it makes some of these wins even more special for me, to know what I've been through, to still be here.

Q.  Were you aware that Nadal was out while you were playing or before you played?  Did that act as some sort of inspiration?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  I obviously knew about it only because I was following his court.  I had to keep an eye on it.  Obviously thought, yeah, it was a tough one.  Even when Rafa was down two sets to Love, I thought it was going to go four, five sets at least.

I was a little bit surprised.  I think we both sort of, yeah, ended up having to rush a little bit to get ready because we thought we'd still be on a bit later.

When I'm out there, though, that's the furthest thing from my mind.  I was obviously trying to concentrate on Stan, you know, trying to get through this match.

Q.  What do you know about Dustin Brown?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  Not a lot.  Never really seen him play.  Rochey and a couple of the boys went and had a bit of a look today.  I'm sure we'll sit down, speak to them later tonight, but tomorrow more likely, and go through it.  I've never hit with him.  Never really seen a lot of him.

Yeah, he's a serve volleyer, aggressive sort of player from what I've seen.  Big forehand, big serve as well.  Yeah, I have to be on my game.  But for now I'll enjoy the win.

Q.  Obviously beating a seed opens up the draw a little bit.  What do you feel like is possible?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  I'll take it one match at a time.  The moment that you knock off a decent player, then let your guard down, that's when you're going to go out of the tournament.

I still have to stay composed, you know, be confident.  Know that I'm hitting the ball well.  Still got to go out there and do the job, though.

Q.  What's turned around for you?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  I know that I can still play the game.  I compete against the best guys.  I play well in the big tournaments, I think.  That's why I'm still playing.

Q.  What was it like?  A lot of rowdy Aussies in the stands today.  Did that help you?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  Yeah, absolutely.  It's fantastic.  To walk out there, you know, I know a few of the Fanatic boys in the crowd.  They enjoy the win as much as I do.

Yeah, it's good that I can put on some sort of show that they can get pretty pumped up out there, as well.

Q.  When you come here, do you have to make a choice to block out memories because you've had a lot of success here, but you've also been through so much, or do you think about that stuff?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  No, I embrace it.  Yeah, I've only got good memories from here really.  Yeah, as a kid growing up, if someone was going to say you're going to win one Wimbledon, I would have taken it every day of the week, and that being the only tournament.  For me, it's always a special place to come back to, and always will be.

Q.  When you talk to the surgeons last year about your toe, what was the advice?  Did they say something was possible?  Did someone say you should retire?

LLEYTON HEWITT:  Well, nearly everyone.  I think there were two surgeons, the guy who ended up doing it and one other guy.  There were probably five, six, seven that I spoke to worldwide.  They said if I had it done, you're done.

In all my research beforehand, which was very extensive, I never found another athlete that had it done, or had it done and tried to come back and play any kind of sport.

So, yeah, it's something I'm pretty proud of, as well.


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