- About the tournament
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– Marton, it seemed that the start wasn’t easy for you. If it is true … was it because of you couldn’t get used to conditions or because your opponent played unexpectedly well for you?
– Last weekend I played Davis Cup tie in Hungary on clay outdoors. The court was very slow. I wanted to come here on Monday morning but we finished the tie on Monday I have to stay in Hungary and I couldn’t catch the flight in the morning. I didn’t fly on Tuesday I practiced on hard court in Hungary and had a flight this morning I woke up at 4 o’clock; I practiced 20 minutes before the match that is why I was a little bit tired, I had a bit something like a jet. At the beginning Alexey [Vatutin] was playing really well, surprised me with fast backhands, he didn’t miss a ball, he was serving well and played unbelievably good tennis. And then I started to put more balls in the court, just focus on the next point, always tried to win the next point, started to serve better and feel myself better, got used to the surface and that was the key.
– Most of the Russian fans learnt about you after the Davis Cup tie Hungary v. Russia in 2017, after that you clinched your maiden ATP title and this season you reached your highest ranking #31. What goals do you set for yourself to the end of the season?
– I started to play my best tennis after I beat the Russian team. It gave me a lot of confidence after I beat [Karen] Khachanov and Andrey [Rublev] on the same weekend. Last year I won the tournament, now I am #66, I have dropped a little bit in the ranking. I want to get back into the top 50 and stay there as long as possible.
– Non-tennis person could be surprised with the fact that even after decades of years in tennis professional tennis players says that they are working on something. What are they working at?
– It looks like we do the same every day; we do tennis practice, fitness, running, stretching but tennis it is not always about technically but about tactically how to think on the court in different situations.
– You have said you have just arrived in St. Petersburg but maybe you have already noticed the beauty of the city and how did you find the “SIBUR ARENA”?
– It is my first time here in St. Petersburg. Actually I came here straight from the airport at 11 o’clock, I came to eat in the players’ restaurant the food was unbelievable. I really like the arena, facility are really nice…so far so good, I didn’t see match. I will play doubles and then I will go to the hotel which I haven’t seen yet but I have heard the city is beautiful.
– You have a tattoo on your hand where is said: “Forgive me for my sins”. What does it mean for you?
– When I was around 19-20, I was around 250 in the ranking s, struggling with my tennis. I was kind of a bad boy, outside the court I was going out a lot for parties, spending time with friends and not focusing much time on tennis. And one day I broke my finger I couldn’t play for two months and I put that.
– So this phrase is devoted to tennis?
– Yes, it is to tennis but I can relate it to anything now.
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