- About the tournament
- Ecology Day
– What can you say about today’s match? Did you play better than during the previous match or did you show pretty much the same level?
– I think I played better. I think in general I played better. I started really well, I was feeling better on the court, moving better, served well, played aggressively. I’m happy with my performance tonight.
– You keep coming to this tournament and obviously you love this city, you love playing here. The crowd was behind your opponent today, but you also had your own fans. Weren’t you a bit surprised that there were fans supporting Stan Wawrinka and not Evgeny Donskoy?
– I’m always happy to have some fans all around the world. I always had a great support here in St. Petersburg. For sure, I was expecting the crowd to be against me tonight, but in general people here were always super nice to me, always welcoming the best way, so I’m happy to be here and have a chance to play another match in front of them.
– The Russian players say that Evgeny Donskoy’s overall level is higher than his ranking and that all his problems are in his head – they are only his mental problems. Did you feel that he was struggling with these mental problems throughout the match and did you take advantage of it?
– I think, in general Evgeny Donskoy is a great player. He is a tough player to play against, and tonight was a three-set match. I was focusing on what to do and to start the third set better, to raise the speed in general. It was the first time I played against him, and it was a tough match, so I’m happy to get through.
– You played two quite tough matches in a row at this tournament. Do you think that a day-off between match days is an advantage for you? Or on the contrary, is it may be better to play every day, when you are in a sort of a “bubble”?
– I’m happy with this schedule so far. I arrived in St. Petersburg early to get ready to the tournament, I played on the first day, then I had a day off yesterday; I played again tonight, and then I’ll have a day-off tomorrow (a day without match), and I’m happy with it. It’s a first tournament indoors for me since 9 months or even more, I think even almost a year. I’m happy with all that. That’s what we do as tennis players: we follow the schedule and try our best to be ready for every match. I’m playing well and I’m happy to be in the quarterfinals.
– Rafael Nadal won his historic 13th title at the Roland Garros over the weekend and tied Roger with 20 Grand Slams titles overall. As someone who has played so many matches and won some matches against the Big Three, what are your thoughts on Rafa’s huge accomplishment? And who do you think is actually the greatest of all time among those tree tennis players?
– What happened at the French Open this year is one of the greatest achievements of any sports probably – I mean, winning for the 13th time the French Open. The way Nadal is doing it is something amazing. I had the chance to play him there at the French Open and I almost got killed, so I know how difficult it is to play there. I think it’s always difficult to compare players, especially those amazing athletes who are still playing. I think we have to wait and see. I think we have to enjoy more that they are still playing and still doing something amazing for sports in general. That’s something I love to watch, I love to watch them play. As long as they play, I will enjoy that.
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