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23/01/2011 07:38 CEST - Interviews

Novak Djokovic

b. Nicolas Almagro 6-3 6-4 6-0

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Q. Was that a good match to have approaching the quarterfinals?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It was a very good match. Serve was great today, and it's important to raise a level of performance as I did today, you know, before the quarterfinals.
Now the opponents are very difficult and matches are tough and unpredictable. It was a great match for me today. I had a tough opponent, big hitter, and I could test couple things in my game: My patience and aggressivity in any event some moments.

Q. So it's looking good going into the final?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Game‑wise, yeah. I'm happy. I'm feeling good energy‑wise. I didn't spend that much time on the court in the opening week. Yeah, look forward to the next challenge.

Q. What happened with the umpire at the beginning of the second set? Was it coaching?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, but I don't think it was the right call, because I missed a forehand and then I turn to my coach. As you always make as a player an eye contact with your team. That's what I did. I didn't ask for any advices, you know, because they can't help too much. You've got to do what you got to do.
So I don't understand. I just feel that any chair umpire before giving you a violation for, I don't know, coaching or time wasting or whatever, I think he should give you a pre‑warning and just tell you, Okay, you're playing too slow or you're doing this and you shouldn't do. This is me as a player, it's my opinion. I respect that. Before giving you a straight violation in that moment it's not what you want.

Q. Has it ever happened to you before?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Coaching, no. Never. First time. Smashed my racquet couple of times.

Q. You aren't denying you did it. You're saying you should get one strike?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I didn't do anything. I didn't do anything and I didn't ask for the advice. That's my point. What I'm saying is that even though I think it was the wrong call, if he thinks that it was right, he should have told me before giving me a warning. Just tell me, Hey, maybe your coach is involved too much before the points, he's giving you signals. I would say, Yes, okay, sorry no problem.
Next time if he does that, give me a warning and I respect that fully. Don't give me warning right away.

Q. What are your views on coaching? In the women's tour the coach can now come down and have a little reassuring chat. What do you think should happen?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: To be honest, I have not any opinion about that. I don't think it's good or bad. It's in the women's tennis, you know, we get used to having the coaches in the box and throughout the whole match and that's it. We don't have that rule.
As I said, you prepare with your coach and your team before the match, the tactics and things you want to do on the court. Soon as you step on the court and start the match, it's all you.

Q. You've won the Davis Cup now.

Q. So you've got a captain sitting next to you. Do you listen to the captain very much or do you just want to be in your own head all the time?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: On the one hand it's good to have somebody on the bench in Davis Cup, because they can notice things that you don't during the match because you're under pressure, you're doing something wrong that you shouldn't do.
If there is something on the bench, he can tell you exactly what it is. So you can just pay attention to that. From that perspective it's good to have somebody.
They should make more fun. The girls are too serious when they invite the coach. They should make more jokes. It would be more entertaining for us to watch the TV. I like it when I see it, what she's going to say, you know. It's always like, play your forehand, backhand, crack some jokes.

Q. Tennis should be more fun?

Q. Looking at the second week, how did you see the tournament shaping up?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: As I said, the matches are going to become more difficult and the opponents are higher ranked. It was important for me if spend as less time on the court as I could, and that's what I did.
I'm hitting the ball well. Physically and mentally I'm fit and ready to win another match. So I'm taking one match at a time, and seriously, analyzing my next opponent, either Berdych or Verdasco. Both of them love playing on hardcourts, big hitters. The match against Almagro today was good.

Q. Given your next opponent, is it more about power? Do you change your practice tomorrow to accommodate that or do you know them well enough?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I know these guys well. There is nothing specific you can do to make your game better or play better for one day. Just a routine practice. Just keeping the good feel on the court and resting and preparing for the match.

Q. How open is this tournament? You've got a very strong field of players left. It's like a U.S. Masters or something. How open is it?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, you have those two guys. Definitely still two favorites to win the event deservedly. But I think maybe last year and a half, two years, you have a little bit more players coming up that have ‑‑ that are capable of winning major events.
Soderling, Murray, you know, Roddick. Yeah, couple more guys, I think Berdych. They're all playing really good tennis and believe more they can beat Federer and Nadal. We all do. So in that terms it's maybe more open than it was couple years back.

Q. Of those guys, you seem to show the most confidence against Roger when you play him in Grand Slams. You don't seem to have any fear of this. You've beaten him twice.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, well, if I go out and with a white flag, you know, it's not the right attitude. Of course, I have big respect for him and Nadal and all the players, but I've won against all of them and I know how it feels like to play on the big stage.
If you want to win a Grand Slam, you have to believe in yourself and be confident. You have to have that attitude on the court.

Q. How important is it for you to have Marian back in your box after US Open?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It's great. Great to see him back. He had some private issues and now he's back with me full time.
So he's more than just a coach. He's a great, great friend of mine. I consider him as second father as well. He's really giving me a lot of advices on and off the court and we have great relationship.
To have him full time with me is a big advantage.

Q. I know you have a tournament in Serbia. Is there anything else you invest in?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, that's private. I'm not going to tell you what.


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