Not sure where to start as I sit here in Austin a little confused what to do on a day without a set schedule. 2006 brought me more joy than any other year in my tennis career thus far. Yes, you heard me correctly. I had more exhilarating fun coming back this summer than I had had before. It was almost comparable to when I was first coming up when I was seventeen and had everything to prove. Going back to that place where I went into matches unsure of what was going to happen, to feeling like a force in the tennis world again was a crazy journey. Nothing felt better than winning big matches again, after the struggles, and the questions of the first six months. I don’t think I will ever take winning for granted again. It was a learning experiencethat I won’t forget anytime soon.I can honestly say I feel very very good about 2007 as well. I will have a couple of months to train and get even more used to my new style of game. I thought I played an attacking style well at times the second half of the year, but had hardly anytime to really get down to practicing it for an extended period of time. I should have beaten Roger at Shanghai, and I feel with more time and preparation heading into next year, I will be able to produce more matches like that. How I played for those first two sets is the direction I see my game heading as far as style. I really do believe that struggling early on this year will help me from here on out. I mean I feel like things could have not gone much worse for a the better part of the year, and yet I still ended up at Maters (sic). I guess that is a good thing in a weird way.
I also want to thank all of you fans for sticking by me. It was tough to keep up a strong exterior with a lot of negativity and questions swirling what felt like all the time. It was nice to know that some people still had faith and were more interested in helping me build it back up as opposed to tearing it down for the sake of a story.
Thanks again for your support and I am looking forward to sharing 2007 with you.
A bad year? Relatively speaking only. Andy ended the year with another TMS shield, a Grand Slam final for his fourth consecutive year (only Roger Federer can say that), and another year-end Top-10 finish for his fifth consecutive year (again, only Roger can say that). Not too shabby, considering this was his “worst” year since entering the Top 10.
Good luck in 2007, Andy!