Roland Garros

Tuesday, 29 September 2020

Paris, France

Kevin Anderson

Press Conference


6-2, 6-3, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What do you think of the new balls? Are they good for a big server like you?

KEVIN ANDERSON: I mean, to be honest it's been a little bit tough to have a good feel for them and the differences just because the conditions since I've been in Paris, it's been pretty tough conditions. So it's really hard to sort of isolate normal conditions here and feel the difference between what the ball is like.

I think even with the same ball in these conditions, it would be very different. I'm having a bit of a hard time giving you some sort of feedback on the ball itself. I mean, for instance, in today's match, it rained probably at least 50% of the match. A lot of clay and dirt on the ball. It's really hard to get a true sense of what that ball is like, how it would be normally playing.

I mean, obviously conditions were very slow. It's been very damp, very humid, colder than what we're used to. There's some adjustments. But I feel like, for instance in today's match, I did a pretty good job of taking care of my serve. I feel like you need to mix it up a little bit more.

But, yeah, if things were a little bit warmer, I'd be able to give you a little bit more insight on the ball itself.

Q. What has your experience been like in the bubble hotel?

KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, we've been doing this for a few weeks now, so you get a little bit more accustomed to it. I think just one of the weird things, I mean, I was commenting when we were in Rome a few weeks ago being in such a great city and not being able to go anywhere is kind of weird. Paris is the same thing.

My wife and I, she's been with me in Paris for a number of years now, it's one of our favorite places to go around. There's so much to do, so many things to see, places to eat. It's a little bit weird.

I think overall, I said the same thing in New York, I've been very impressed with how in this instance FFT have managed everything. I mean, sure, it's different than what we're used to. I think all in all, given the fact we can be out here competing at the French Open, I think they've done a really good job.

Q. It looked like you were enlisting the aid of a few front desk clerks to get a problem resolved. Were you having any issues in particular yesterday?

KEVIN ANDERSON: No, I was having some clay court shoes delivered. It went to the other players' hotel. That's why there was a little bit of confusion. But I got them in the end. That's all that matters.

Q. Your next opponent is Dusan Lajovic. What is your take on him? What do you need to do in order to win?

KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, I played Dusan, this was a few years ago in Madrid. Very different conditions. I feel like he's really done well, especially the last few years. I feel like he's really established himself. He's had some really good results. He's a very tough player. In these conditions, as well, it's going to be a very tricky match.

I think for me there's always a few adjustments playing different players. I think the biggest focus is what I'm trying to do on my side of the court. I felt like there were a lot of positives from my match today. I'll be looking to continue that into the next match.

Every match you have to really fight. It's not going to be an easy one. I think big focus for me is taking care of my serve, looking for opportunities. In these conditions, with it being slower, point construction is really important. It's going to be a good match, one that I'm definitely looking forward to.

Q. You obviously didn't need it today, but what is your opinion considering the long match with the Italian yesterday that went six hours? Is it time for the French Open to employ a tiebreaker for the fifth set like all the other Grand Slams? What do you think about the idea of men's matches at slams being switched to best-of-three?

KEVIN ANDERSON: I was watching it yesterday. It was an unbelievable effort by both players. Been in that position before, if you've played a very long match, it's very challenging.

If it was up to me, I would think that capping it at some point in time. I know every Grand Slam is different. I think I believe the French Open, am I right in saying it's a long set, there's no tiebreaker at all?

Q. Yes.

KEVIN ANDERSON: I think instituting something would be good. Whether they want to do it -- I mean, people were asking me that about Wimbledon. They made it 12-All. I think 6-All is fine, like how US Open has done it. I know Australia is like I think 10-all. I think it's good to have some sort of limit on it. I mean, I would definitely encourage French Open to do that.

In terms of the three-out-of-five sets, it's interesting, I was just having this conversation with my coach yesterday. If you look at the history of our sport, what three-out-of-five sets, the challenges, the preparation, getting through those sort of different situations that arise.

I mean, I would definitely say that I'm a big fan of continuing to play three-out-of-five sets. I feel like it's a very unique setup. How much is at stake in the Grand Slam format, what it takes in order to win three-out-of-five sets. I feel there's different demands that you don't experience playing two-out-of-three sets.

With so much history, every Grand Slam, I feel like it's part of our sport. I mean, I would really encourage, at least from my side, would definitely would want three-out-of-five sets to remain.

Q. As a big server, do you agree or disagree with the opinion that players are only as good as their second serve?

KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, I mean, I think if you look at a lot of matches, a very important stat is the second serve battle, how many points you're winning on your second serve, how many points are you winning on your opponent's second serve.

I think it's a little bit oversimplified. I mean, there's obviously a first serve, and the way you construct points is a big part of the game. It's not just a serve, because that's a shot that's generally going to come back a little bit more. It's how you construct those point. It's a serve plus-one, plus-two, et cetera.

If you looked at the stats, players have done well. Unless they're winning an incredibly high first-serve percentage and they're serving at a very high first serve -- if they're winning a lot of points and serving at a high percentage, then obviously the second serve becomes a little less important because it's only a few points.

Generally speaking, I think you're definitely right, it's a very important battle that takes place once the second serve comes into play.

Q. How do you feel about the fact that we have four different ways of ending matches, three of them tiebreakers, one played to advantage. What would be your preference at the French Open on the clay?

KEVIN ANDERSON: Yeah, we were just talking about that. I think it's pretty interesting that each Grand Slam has a different ending now. I think I would encourage French Open to put some sort of limit on it. I mean, even like Wimbledon, 12-All. My personal opinion is I think at 6-All, that's a good time to play a tiebreak. If somebody had to ask me, that's what I would choose.

Even Australia, 10-All, Wimbledon 12-All, it's better than not having anything at the end. As you've seen, when it does go past that, it can be very taxing. What I alluded to earlier is I really like three-out-of-five sets. It's an important part of our game, how you prepare for it. At some stage it does get a little bit much.

I think having a tiebreak is a good thing. My personal opinion would be at 6-All. I think even just having that conversation would be a step forward.

Q. You'd rather lose two toenails than four, right?

KEVIN ANDERSON: Exactly (laughter). I mean, French Open, generally speaking, when it's usually played, conditions can be pretty lively. I would assume for the most part matches take a little bit longer, as well. It's definitely more physical at times. Even more reason to I think have a tiebreaker in the fifth set.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
101962-1-1063 2020-09-29 16:49:00 GMT

ASAP sports

tech 129