Aug 27, 2016, 5:51:11 PM

Here is what some of the big name players said before the start of the 2016 US Open.

Q. You come into the US Open with 12 majors; two more to Rafa Nadal and Pete Sampras; Roger Federer is at 17. How much are you aware of that and how much of it is a goal to try to get to 17 at some point?

DJOKOVIC: Grand Slams are valued the most in our sport as tournaments historically, so these are the tournaments where I want to do well and do my best. I obviously had a phenomenal Grand Slam career that I'm very proud of and very grateful for. I'm 29 at the moment and believe that I'm at a peak of my abilities as a tennis player. I'll try to keep that peak as consistent and enduring as much as possible.

Again, it's privilege to be mentioned alongside all the legends of the sport that have won 10+ Grand Slams and made history books. I'm honoured to actually play in the active tennis with two of them. For the last ten years I've played with Roger and Rafa who are still out there.

So even though I understand that. Of course as one of the top players you get more attention and questions regarding winning Grand Slams and being one of the favourites, so I really value that. That also allows me to get myself in a right state of mind and good approach.

Hopefully, as I said, physically as well I'll be enabled to perform my best. At the moment, I know that there is a little room still for me to get better physically. Hopefully that's going to be the case next couple days. Then when tournament starts, all the doors are open.

Q. You have come in here before having played a lot; you have come in here before having not played a lot. Is there any difference, or is the US Open the US Open?

WILLIAMS: Well, the US Open is obviously a special place. I think usually I prefer to play more coming into the final Grand Slam of the year, but I really don't think -- there is nothing we can do about it. You just have to make the best of every single opportunity. That's all I can do now.
Q. How tough were these last couple of weeks for you? Disappointing losses in Brazil and going to Cincinnati and practicing but not playing, which we don't see you do all that often. How tough has it been to reset, short turnaround between Olympics and here?
WILLIAMS: It wasn't very easy I think physically. Just really trying so hard and trying everything to get better. But at the end of the day I knew I gave the best effort I could, and it just wasn't enough. I just -- Olympics I just practiced two days before playing my match. It's not ideal, but it was all I could do. So, you know, like I said. I'm starting to feel better now, and that's really positive.

Q. Do you feel like you're in the latter stages of your career?

MURRAY: Well, I'm 29. I mean, I would imagine if I'm lucky I'd be playing at this level for three, four more years, max, I would think. I mean, it's not easy to do that. I hope I'm still playing like this when I'm 38 years old (laughter), but it's pretty unlikely.

So I just need to -- I'm actually using that as a positive that, you know, you have to make the most of every opportunity. It's a slightly different mentality to maybe when you're younger and like you feel like you have a bit more time on your side.

Want to make the most of every tournament I play in and try and win and achieve as much as I can the next few years.
Q. A question about the roof. The roof has arrived at Arthur Ashe. I believe it was 2008 when bad weather impacted you. You had to have the semi-final on a Sunday and Roger had an extra day of rest. What do you think about the roof?
MURRAY: I think it's great. I practiced under the roof the other day. It does look amazing on centre court as well now. It's very quick too to open and close. Shouldn't be too many delays. 
For players it's a good thing I think. For the TV, for the media, fans, obviously. You know, it works. It works well for everyone. I'll bet it doesn't rain this year. Everybody has been asking for one for the last few years, and then spend $500 million on a roof and there is no rain.

Q. What does the No. 1 ranking in the world mean to you, given that you do have a possibility by the end of this tournament to have it?

KERBER: I mean, let's see what happen in the next few days or two weeks. I mean, to have the chance, of course that means a lot. But you have to play like a whole year to get the chance. And you have to play really good tennis and to play -- continue your good tennis.

So to have the chance it's great, but if they will come you will see. I mean, it means a lot when I will get another chance to get it, but let's see.
Q. How different does feel to be ranked and just regarded this highly since winning Australia and the Wimbledon final, or has it been the same feeling it has been for the past year of being around the top 10, top 5?
KERBER: I think a few things change, of course. In the last few months when I won Australia and also making the final in Wimbledon, but I think for myself I'm still the same person, and I know what to do to have like success. Which is what I learned, and this is like the same, what's the same like the last few years. The pressure for sure is maybe a little bit higher, but if I'm not doing the pressure on myself, everything is fine.

Q. How important do you think that slams continue to improve and update while still maintaining that historical perspective, as well?

MUGURUZA: I think it's great. Grand Slams are the tournament for us. There is only four, and everybody -- you know, it's a dream to win one. The fact that they are improving and going every time a level higher, it's incredible.
Q. Do you feel more positive going into this year's US Open compared to where you were last year?
MUGURUZA: I think so, yes. Last year was a little bit tougher, but I'm always positive when I go to a tournament. Always have like a new mindset. Got a new opportunity, and it's a Grand Slam. I'm excited here. I love Grand Slams. I love New York. I'm looking forward to start and see what happens.