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June 21, 2014

Kei Nishikori


THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  Can you just update us on your hip and how you're feeling physically coming into the tournament?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, physically, you know, almost 100% perfect.
Yeah, played a good three matches in Halle.  Lost to Roger, but was still good match.  Playing good.
Yeah, everything is good for next week.

Q.  What are the main adjustments you made to your game going to the clay season to the grass season?  Next year there will be an extra week between the French Open and Wimbledon.  What do you think it will change in terms of preparation?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, for me this is the toughest time to, you know, change clay court to grass court.  You know, you have to change little bit tactics, and also how you play and return is different.
Service very important here.  You know, a little more aggressive than usually, for sure.  Try to come in if I can.
Serve has been pretty good for me these couple weeks, so that's going to be a key for next week.
Yeah, it's going to help all the players, for sure, that we need extra one week between French and here.
Usually I stay in Europe for two months, you know, from Barcelona to here.  This is toughest time for me, to stay here in Europe.
But from next year I can maybe go back home and spend couple days to relax and, you know, recovery from those clay courts and coming here.  So that's going to help for sure for all the players.

Q.  It's been talked about for a while that you're on the edge of a big breakthrough.  You had such a good clay season.  You almost beat Rafa.  Do you have more belief now that you can play with the top guys?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, feel more confidence.  Even on grass it's different, but I feel very confidence.  Very different than last year.  You know, I feel very good on coming here.
Actually never did well on grass court yet, so hopefully I can do better this year.

Q.¬† You're obviously having a very good year.¬† You have had one or two injuries, as well.¬† Are you confident you can get through a Grand Slam?¬† Because it's obviously pretty demanding; best‑of‑five sets.
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, physically I'm very strong, I feel.  You know, French, it was very unfortunate.  I was kind of injured and I couldn't practice before.  Very sad to lose, you know, in first round.
But, you know, very looking forward to play coming here.  My body's 100% and also playing good.  It's not going to be easy draw for me here, but hopefully I can do well.

Q.¬† What do you know of Kenny De Schepper, your first‑round opponent?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Actually, not much.  We haven't played a match.  We only practice I think once or twice, so...
I don't have many info about him, but he's big guy, lefty, big serve, and so it's not going to be easy to play here.
For sure my return is going to be a key.  You know, try to stay focused and try to be ready on Tuesday.

Q.  Would you like the grass court season to be even longer?  It's a season where there are not very many tournaments.  What is your opinion on this?  Would you like it to be longer or it's good the way it is?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, hopefully there is more tournaments on grass, because there is only three weeks here.  But I know it's going to be really tough to, you know, put in a tournament on the schedule.
But, yeah, hopefully there is more tournaments on grass.

Q.  It looks like you got quite a draw.  I know you have Rafa in there, but what is your view on your draw?
KEI NISHIKORI:  I don't know.  I only see the first match, so...
I don't like to see further in the tournaments.
But, you know, if I can play good here, I think I can have chance to go farther in the weeks.  Try to play one match at a time.  Even in the first match I have tough one.
Yeah, let's see.

Q.  Having Michael Chang as part of your team after such a good clay court season but a disappointment at the French Open, what did he say to you and how do you move forward from that?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Well, he didn't say much about French because he knew that I wasn't ready for the match.  You know, we had a good two weeks in Halle with him.  Him and Dante, we all working very hard on grass.  That was something I never done before, you know, train really hard on grass.
Yeah, with him, he was teaching me a lot of good stuff, something I didn't know and I never done before.  So for sure he's helping my tennis grow.

Q.  Will you have Michael Chang working with you over the next couple of weeks if you stay here that long?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yes, we planning to working together before the tournament start in Washington.  Yeah, that's going to be very important to work hard again before American season.
Yeah, especially I didn't do well last year those three tournaments even until US Open.  It's going to be very important to work hard again after this.

Q.  Is Michael staying with you for Wimbledon?

Q.  Can I ask you what he's done for your game above all else?  Is there something?
KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah.  I can say a lot of things.
But I think you can see my tennis is changing than last year.  I think a little more aggressive.  There is not many chance when you play against top guys especially, so, you know, try to very concentrate for the ball I can step in.  Yeah, try to be a little more aggressive.

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