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  Saturday, 8 September, 2001, 19:17 GMT 20:17 UK
Kafelnikov: I was trying
Lleyton Hewitt celebrates his US Open semi-final win
Lleyton Hewitt celebrates his US Open semi-final win
Yevgeny Kafelnikov has rejected suggestions that he was not trying during his semi-final defeat to Lleyton Hewitt in the US Open.

Hewitt took just 83 minutes to beat Kafelnikov in the most one-sided semi-final in US Open history.

The Australian won 6-1, 6-2, 6-1 to secure a place in his first Grand Slam final.

But the Russian's play lacked verve and, at times, he appeared disinterested in the match.

"I was trying. Believe me," Kafelnikov said.


For every question I had, Lleyton had the answer
Yevgeny Kafelnikov

"I tried very hard. I had one game plan but, midway through the first set, I realised it wasn't working and I tried to do something else.

"For every question I had, Lleyton had an answer. He was just too good.

"I'm not the only one who has had trouble playing him. He's a tough competitor.

"He gets so many balls back into the court it's amazing."

The Russian thinks Hewitt now has an excellent chance of winning the tournament.

"His confidence is going to be huge. I don't think there are many times you win a semi-final the way he did," said Kafelnikov.

"If he chases balls like that, it's going to be difficult to beat him."

Delight

"It's kind of depressing to see yourself losing the way I did, but I will get over this match."

Hewitt, on the other hand, was understandably delighted with his performance.

"It's an unbelievable feeling right now," Hewitt said. "You get up two sets and you think, 'I'm only one set away.'"

"We (Australia) won the Davis Cup in 1999 and I love playing for my country but this is definitely up there with that.

"I just hope I can go out there and play well on Sunday."

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