Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Djokovic US Open Interview | 1st Round | Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Novak Djokovic US Open Interview | 1st Round | Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Q. What do you take out of this kind of first round?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I'll take the performance that I had. You know, it's hard to say anything from Lorenzi's perspective. Obviously, I tried to analyze my game, and my game was great from the start to the end. You know, it's also important for me to try to be as economical with the time I spend on the court as possible, but obviously not underestimating any opponent. I played really focused, tried to get to the net also. It was great all in all.

Q. When you're in the middle of a match like that where he's acting like it's a miracle when he wins a game, do you have any trouble focusing?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, I have no trouble. I mean, I've had many matches in my career. As I said, I try to focus on my side, on what I can do in order to win that match as fast as possible, best way possible. You know, it was a great performance.

Q. How long did it take you to learn that routine on Arthur Ashe Stadium?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Five minutes before we came to the court, to be honest. There was no tennis plan for us, but it was exceptional fun. It was great to be with Missy on the same side of the court. She's so young and already successful having five, six medals. We had Call Me Maybe song that brought all the stadium on their feet. It was quite interesting. I haven't done much of that in my career.

Q. You love entertainment, you have a great personality. How do you think your life would have changed if Jelena never showed up in your village?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's hard to go back and say what if the turn of events went the other side, what happened if I didn't play tennis, if Jelena didn't show up. I believe in life everything happens for a reason. It was kind of a destiny for me to be part of this sport. I didn't follow any family tradition because nobody ever played tennis in my family. I grew up on the mountain with skis. Yes, I come from a sport family but not tennis. I fell in love, you know, from the first moment when I was four years old, when I saw it for the first time. I asked my father to buy me a racquet. That's it. I was fortunate in my early stages of my career to be working with the people that have great knowledge and love for this sport. Jelena was one of them obviously.



Q. Some say the Davis Cup kick‑started something in you. Then you have the Olympics. Can you talk about the national triumph of Davis Cup and then the sorrow of the Olympics.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I cannot speak in the name of all players. Obviously, everybody is different. Everybody has an obviously different way to approach when they play individual tournaments and when they play for their nation. For me, I'm very emotional. I always feel more excitement, maybe more responsibility and pressure when I get to play Davis Cup and Olympic Games now. It's a very rare occasion in our sport because we get to play mostly for ourselves because we're individual athletes. I can't wait to play Davis Cup. It's always been a blast for all of us. We are great friends, all us tennis players from Serbia. We know each other for a long time. There is this team atmosphere that you get to experience a few times a year that is really irreplaceable. When you win a trophy, you get to share it with everybody. When you win a trophy you are an individual alone on the court.



Q. Are you making a conscious effort this year to come to the net more, and if so, why?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Because I feel my net game isn't that bad and I should, you know, use the opportunity when I have from baseline rally. I have many times a chance to come to the net and finish off the point earlier. That's a part of a game which I was working on with my team. You know, it takes time. I am aware of that. I've learned throughout my career to be patient, you know, to work and to stay dedicated and things will, you know, come to their place and I will get results. Obviously I'm a baseline player. You know, I don't want to change the game upside down, you know. But I think that having that variety of coming to the net, chip‑and‑charging sometimes, serving and volleying, it's important to today's tennis.



Q. Is it a matter of conserving energy at times?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: For sure. It's a great example. Even though with the surfaces, I think, comparing to maybe 10, 15 years ago, are slower, the players are much better returners than they were years ago, so it's a mental thing I think in the end. If you get to the net, you have across the net maybe Nadal and Murray, they pass you three out of three times, you know, you're going to question yourself if you're going to come to the net again. That's something that goes through your mind, but obviously it also conserves energy and it's great to have that asset.



Q. Going back to Melbourne, since then it's been a big year, lots of high‑pressure moments for you. Are you still feeling fresh? Are you still as up as you were at the start of the year?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, I am always motivated. Physically you go through stages where you're more or less tired, exhausted from all the weeks that you play. But in this moment I feel good. This is the last major of the year. It's played on my favorite surface, you know, that suits me the best. I would really like to go far in this tournament. You know, I've been aiming for that obviously. Then we'll see how it goes. We all knew we're going to have a very busy summer because it's Olympic year. But generally it has been a great 2012 for me.



Q. It's always a tricky thing to analyze humor and joking around. It's so important in your life. Talk about the role of humor in your career. Does it take pressure off, give you a light side?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, just having fun really. In life, in my opinion, it's very important in order to embrace whatever life brings you, you know. Yes, we need to be professional, committed, focused on what we do. Our profession brings us a lot of success, you know. A lot of pressure, important moments, a lot of challenges, but also a lot of joy. Depends on how you look at it. I always try to take everything from a bright, positive side. I'm fortunate because I have a great team of people around me. That's where there's a big source of positive energy for me. You know, we try to joke around all the time. That's us.


Q. Was that impersonation of Rafa all those years ago one thing that you regret?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I don't regret anything. I've done things in life that might be considered as mistakes, depending from what angle you're analyzing those actions of certain individuals. But deep in my heart I never had any intention of hurting or insulting anybody in my life ever. That's the most important thing. The only purpose of my imitations and joking, if you want to call it that way, is to have fun and bring the smile to the people's face.



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