MEMPHIS, TN – February 19, 2011 – Brad Hunter provides his highlights of theÂ Milos Raonic and Andy RoddickÂ post-match interviews from Saturday.
Milos Raonic after his semi-final victory over Mardy Fish 6-4, 4-6, 6-3
Reporter: Are you weary at all? Itâ€™s been a whirlwind couple of weeks.
Raonic: No, Iâ€™m preparing the same way I did my first match in San Jose. I have my routine, I stick to it, I believe in it. I do as much as I can; itâ€™s all I can ask of myselfâ€¦ If I need to fix some things I go on the practice court, Iâ€™m not gonna be arrogant or ignorant and say I donâ€™t need to work on things.
Reporter: Â What are some of the things youâ€™re doing to get yourself ready for the next match?
Raonic: Eat right away, something nutritious.Â Stretching, get work if I have a nagging pain.
Reporter: Thereâ€™s a certain Canadian theme, emerging. Are you proud of that?
Raonic: Yeah, there was a lot of snow here last week. (laughter) Itâ€™s good; itâ€™s something for us to be proud of… I think itâ€™s only the beginning.
Reporter:Â Thereâ€™s never been a top 10 Canadian player.Â Do you ever question whether itâ€™s possible?
Raonic:Â No.Â Simply.Â Iâ€™m doing this for myself.Â Never from I was young did I compare myselfâ€¦always from when I was young, I set high goals for myself.
Reporter: You really seem to up your level of play, on really important points. Is that something comes naturally to youâ€¦ or is that something you talk aboutâ€¦?
Raonic: I have my strengths that I try to rely on in these situations, theyâ€™ve been sorta peaking for me at the right timesâ€¦ Some days itâ€™s going to manage to work, some days itâ€™s notâ€¦
Reporter: What are your thoughts on the final, del Potro or Roddick?
Raonic: I look forward to it.Â Both players also are going to try and impose their game. Andyâ€™s going to try to dictate more with his serve and forehand, change the pace with his backhandâ€¦
Reporter: If you had your choice Milos, who would you rather play?Â Roddick or del Potro?
Raonic: I donâ€™t have my choice so it doesnâ€™t matter. (laughter)
Reporter: Do you travel with maple syrup?
Raonic: I might start doing that.
Reporter: Your serve is such a weapon.Â Is that always been a natural service motion or is that something that youâ€™ve worked on?
Raonic: Itâ€™s always been natural but Iâ€™ve always worked on itâ€¦
Reporter: Mardy said you played like a top 10 player today. Do you think thatâ€™s something that you can accomplish this year?
Raonic:Â This year itâ€™s tough… but uh, Iâ€™m not gonna say I canâ€™t but itâ€™s tough.Â If Iâ€™m playing like a top 10 player the whole year then eventually Iâ€™ll be a top 10 player.
Andy Roddick after his 6-3, 6-4 semifinal win over Juan Martin del Potro
Reporter: How do you feel about today?
Roddick: This is probably the best match Iâ€™ve played this year, including Australiaâ€¦ I was happy the way I played today.
Reporter: You got some treatment thereâ€¦ anything wrongâ€¦ with the arm?
Roddick: Noâ€¦ I mean earlier in the week I was having trouble looking left with my neckâ€¦ Itâ€™s not an injury; I think itâ€™s a little bit of a pinched nerveâ€¦ I get extended on my forehand and my arm will fall deadâ€¦Â it kinda comes and goes a little bit.
Reporter: Raonic next, whoâ€™s been playing with a whole lot of confidenceâ€¦ what do you need to focus on to get the win tomorrow?
Roddick: He has the confidence of someone whoâ€™s played 10 matches in 12 days.Â Heâ€™s winning every match close, playing well on the big pointsâ€¦ and that comes with confidence.Â Heâ€™s certainly on a roll and has momentum.Â That being said I only have to beat him on 1 day.Â Itâ€™s just gonna be a matter of who can sneak out a break point and kinda try to convert it.
Reporter: Any significance to the number 50â€¦ to have reached 50 finals?
Roddick: Â Yeah, to play in the finals of 50 tennis tournaments as a professional is a pretty big number.Â Â I might not be that bad after all.
Reporter: What role do you think experience will play tomorrow? Youâ€™ve been in 50 finals, heâ€™s been in 2.
Roddick: I honestly donâ€™t think itâ€™ll play that muchâ€¦ if it was a Grand Slam quarter or semi where the moment is so big and he has time to think aboutâ€¦ heâ€™s got so much momentum right now I think that kinda trumps any inexperience.
Reporter: Youâ€™ve been involved in some important off court projects with some academies, programs for kids and your charity foundation.Â What exactly are you doing?
Roddick: Basically I run a foundation called the Andy Roddick Foundation, and we support different at-risk youth programs in the South Florida and Texas area where Iâ€™ve lived.Â For various charities, weâ€™ve raised close to 15 million dollars over the last 10 years or so.Â For different thingsâ€¦ we have a tennis program in the west side of San Antonioâ€¦ that is mostly (for) Mexican youth and their parents.Â Â Thatâ€™s grown from 50 kids to 600 now.