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Laura Robson, Wimbledon, June 22, 2009

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Wimbledon Interview

Laura Robson

Monday, 22 June 2009

Q. Do you feel more disappointed than pleased with yourself?

LAURA ROBSON: Uhm, yeah. I'm a bit ‑‑ I'm just a little bit upset, but I'm pretty proud of myself. I mean, I thought I played really, really good for a good part of the match, and then in the end just a couple things let me down a bit.

But, yeah, I thought I played a good match.

Q. Were you really sort of going for your second serve today?

LAURA ROBSON: Uhm, I wasn't thinking that I was going for it, but it just wasn't as consistent as it usually is. That probably had something to do with the whole atmosphere and all the nerves and everything.

Q. You said a couple of things let you down. The serve was one of them, was it?

LAURA ROBSON: Yeah. I mean, I hit a couple more double‑faults than I would have liked to, especially on the big points. But I'm still pleased with the way I played.

Q. Why do you think you lost the initiative? You were obviously in charge.

LAURA ROBSON: Yeah, a set and a break up. Thanks for rubbing that in (laughter).

Q. Sorry.

LAURA ROBSON: Yeah, I don't know what happened. But just the game, when I was the break up in the second, I just got really nervous. You know, I made a couple more mistakes than I should have.

But she started playing more balls in the court and getting more returns in.

Q. What was going through your mind in the dressing room beforehand, just about to go out there?

LAURA ROBSON: Nothing really (smiling). I was kind of thinking about what the towels were going to look like this year. They're really nice (laughter).

But before I went on I was completely fine. I wasn't nervous at all. I was just doing my warmup and everything, feeling pretty good.

Q. To what extent were you annoyed by her delaying tactics? Seemed to take a lot of time between points the longer the match went on.

LAURA ROBSON: I didn't even really notice it that much. I mean, it didn't annoy me at all. If she was taking too long, the umpire would have said something, so it's not a problem.

Q. You had to take exams last week. Can you tell us what exams you were taking?

LAURA ROBSON: It wasn't last week. It was the week before. But, anyway.

Uhm, it was okay. I mean...

Q. Did it have an effect on you?


Q. What exams were you taking?

LAURA ROBSON: I did my English ones. I was supposed to do them in Paris. Then since I lost early in Paris, I could come home and do them in London, in this big old church.

Q. Do you know what you're doing next year? Are you planning on doing A levels, or are you going to focus on your tennis?

LAURA ROBSON: I don't know yet. I've still got more GCSEs this year, so...

Q. Can you tell us a bit about the difference playing a match in the main draw as opposed to last year when you were winning the juniors and playing in Australia.

LAURA ROBSON: Well, that was my Grand Slam debut today, and I played a really good match. So, you know, it's different to juniors, but it's not that much different. I mean, if I would have got killed love and love, then, yeah, I'd be coming in here with a different opinion.

But I didn't, so it's not too different from the level that I'm already playing.

Q. How much confidence does this give you to defend your junior title?

LAURA ROBSON: Uhm, well, that's a whole different story because it's all girls that I've played before, and, you know, I have the pressure from defending my title. So I prefer to think about that next week.

Q. What is the new No. 2 court like to play on?

LAURA ROBSON: It was really nice. I was like the first one that got to play on it. It was pretty good.

It's quite deep. Like when you see it from just outside it just looks like a normal stadium, but it really goes quite deep. But it's really, really nice, yeah, and the court was really good.

Because last year, by the time I played matches it was second week, so the courts aren't as good.

Q. You've been busy lately with your studies and tennis training. What do you do to relax in your spare time, being 15?

LAURA ROBSON: Uhm, I watch Gossip Girl. But, no, season two is finished out. I'm so depressed. But, yeah, I don't know. I just do normal stuff (smiling).

Q. Do you get much time to socialize, or can it be quite hard?

LAURA ROBSON: I socialize (laughter). Yeah, what do you want me to say, I've got no friends (laughter)?

Q. Going back to the match, how did it feel playing in front of 4,000 people? Were you aware of the crowd at all?

LAURA ROBSON: Uhm, well, not really, because, as I got told after the match, my brother, like last year he had this little saying. During the match he would shout out like, Mess her up.

This year he changed it up to like a woof, like a dog bark. Completely random. He came up with it yesterday. Apparently he did it quite often, but I didn't hear it. So I just didn't really focus on the crowd.

Q. There's going to be a lot of interest in you in the future. Have you had a lot of sponsors knocking on your door?

LAURA ROBSON: I wouldn't know. Yeah, I'm not the one to ask about that.

Q. You've obviously grown quite a lot this year, haven't you? Do you feel physically stronger as a result of that?

LAURA ROBSON: Yeah. I mean, I can still get stronger and get fitter. Like in that third set I got a bit tired, so that's another thing we'll work on, like, after these couple weeks.

Q. You work with a Dutch coach. How is it to work with him?

LAURA ROBSON: It's okay, you know. Nothing special (smiling).

No, we get along really well. I mean, you have to because you spend so much time with them. And, yeah, he's got a very sarcastic sense of humor.

Q. Does he?

LAURA ROBSON: Yeah. It took me a while to like figure out when he was joking and not, but now I've got it covered.

Q. In what respect does he make you a better tennis player?

LAURA ROBSON: Well, he's really smart like on which shots to hit and when and everything. That's what I struggled with when I started with him. I just kind of banged the ball again and again, like in the same place. I basically always hit it down the line.

But now we've really worked on mixing it up. I think that's really helped.

Q. You haven't succumbed to the grunting phenomenon at all. Have your views changed on that from last year? After you won the juniors, you said you didn't enjoy it very much, didn't like listening to it very much.

LAURA ROBSON: It's such an unattractive sound, isn't it? Yeah, I mean, it's up to the individual whether they want to do it or not and whether they think it helps.

But I don't think it helps that much if you're screaming 110 decibels. I don't mind a normal grunt when you hit it, but when you're already grunting before and after you hit the shot, that's just taking to it a different level.

Q. Is it cheating, as Martina Navratilova suggested?

LAURA ROBSON: I wouldn't call it cheating.

Q. Gamesmanship?

LAURA ROBSON: It's just not the nicest sound to hear when you're trying to focus on hitting your own shot.

Q. Crowds on Henman Hill were watching your first set. Do you think they can come up with a new name for you, Robson Ridge or something?

LAURA ROBSON: It's not really a ridge, is it (smiling)? No, someone will have to come up with a new one. At the moment it's Murray Mound.

Q. Any ideas?

LAURA ROBSON: No. I'll have to think about it, yeah.

Q. Talking of Murray Mound, who is your top tip to win the men's singles?

LAURA ROBSON: It's a tough one now that Nadal's out. Well, I wasn't sure if Nadal was going to win anyway, because he didn't play Queen's and everything, so he didn't have the match practice that he almost like needs to be able to play really good on grass.

So, I mean, Andy has got a very good chance. But, I mean, he'd have to beat Federer, and Federer's like new level now.

Q. He would be your man now, would he, as it were?

LAURA ROBSON: Yeah, I guess so. But I'm hoping Andy proves me wrong.

Q. In the past there's been some controversy about the different amounts that are paid to the men's and women's champions. Now it's equal at Wimbledon. Do you think the women should play five sets instead of three?

LAURA ROBSON: I personally wouldn't want to play five sets. So, like, well done to the men for doing that.

I mean, if you look at the whole calendar, the men are getting more money like in all the other tournaments, the Tier IIs and everything like that. It doesn't really make that much of a difference, to be honest.


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