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June 30, 2014

Grigor Dimitrov


6/4, 7/6, 6/2

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  Andy Murray next in a Wimbledon quarterfinal.  How does that sound?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Sounds great.  Sounds good.  You know, first of all I'm happy that I'm in the quarterfinal match, you know.  Just going to give credit to myself for that.  But my job isn't over yet.
So I'm excited to get on the court tomorrow.  Just go through my regular routines, through all the gears, you know, come on Wednesday.

Q.  Obviously you're coming in here fresh from your victory at Queen's.  How have you felt on the grass so far in this campaign and what sort of levels of confidence do you take into the match?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I take all the confidence from Queen's out on the court on the grass here.  I think it's been a great first week for me.  The grass has been changing also a little bit around the baseline.  It's getting a little tricky, which is a nice thing.
You know, just looking for every match that I got to play.  At the moment I don't think of anything else except what's ahead of me and the opponent.  So there's nothing else that's on my mind right now.

Q.  You said your job is not done yet.  What targets did you set yourself when you arrived to start Wimbledon?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Well, every tournament I enter is to win the whole event.  I think that's the whole point of competing and having those tournaments.
Of course, it's not an easy task.  I mean, it's a lot to ask.  You're going to be asked a lot of questions from your opponent, so you've got to have the answers.  So far I think I've been performing on a good level for me.  I'm expecting to raise up my level in the next match.
It's not a new opponent for me.  I know him.  There's nothing major for me that I need to be aware of.

Q.  You played all four of your matches on either Centre Court or Court1.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  That feels good.

Q.  Do you feel like some of these things that you've gotten, you've been treated like a bigger star or champion than you are, helps you on the court too with confidence?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I think some things are inevitable.  For example, those things you just mentioned, of course, if you perform good, you're playing good, you know, I presume, and you're ranking is climbing high up, you know, you want to put yourself to play on that kind of stage.
Court1, Centre Court, it's a nice thing.  I'm not going to lie.  It's unbelievable courts to play on.
Of course, you know, after every match you play on, you build up that momentum to play on those big courts.  So next time you're out there, whoever you play, you know that you have one under the belt.  So I think it's all positive.

Q.  You've beaten Murray once.  Was it in Mexico you beat him?  What can you remember about that match?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  It was a hard court, night match.  What can I say?  I think we played a great match.  I think it was one of the best matches for me this year so far.
I mean, I know him.¬† I've practiced against him many times.¬† We kind of know our game pretty well.¬† That match in Acapulco, you know, was really long and exhausting match.¬† Another thing is to play best‑of‑three, another thing is to play best‑of‑five.
I think we're both load up and ready to come out on that court.

Q.  From a tactical standpoint, what are the keys on grass for you to challenge Andy Murray here?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Yeah, that's a good question.
Well, we know, first of all, it's his home basically here.  So, you know, he's been playing a lot of matches on the Centre Court.  He knows his way around the grass pretty good.  He's a great mover.
I'm just going to play my game.  I'm not going to step back.  I just want to come out with my big game and play my aggressive tennis.
I mean, I don't want to adjust to my opponent, so to speak.  I'm focusing on my game and what I can bring to the court.  The rest is, you know, going to come.

Q.  Andy said that maybe it was a big burden for you to have, an unfair burden, to be compared to Federer at such an early age.  Can you put in perspective what that has done to the way you've handled things psychologically as you've developed?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Well, I think, as I said at the beginning, it was kind of easy to hear that.  It was kind of funny.  We were all laughing about it.
But, you know, at some point when I started to establish myself as a player on the tour, this thing was starting to get a bit out of hand.  Of course, at the time it put a little bit of pressure on my shoulders.
But I think now all that thing is starting to fade away.  I've proved myself not once, not twice, that I'm a different person, a different player.  So that's something to add up.

Q.  I saw you practicing with Andy in Madrid.  Seemed like there were a lot of jokes going back and forth between you and him and your coach.  Seems like you guys actually like each other.  Can you give us some insight into your relationship, what you think about him as a person?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  The relationship (laughter)?
I think we get along pretty good.  I think my team and his team are on pretty good terms.  We always have a lot of jokes for us.
Yeah, I mean, what can I say?  I have no hard feelings.  One thing is off the court, other thing is on the court.  That's the best part of playing that game 'cause basically you can settle everything on the court.  That's going to be exciting part.
Hopefully it's going to be no hard feelings anyway after the match.

Q.  You have no problems with his Scottish accent?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  No, not at all.  He's a cool dude.

Q.  How tough will it be, the fact of him being defending champion?  Also, what about the influence of Amélie might have on his approach?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  As I said, he's obviously feeling comfortable playing out here, especially on that court.  All the crowd is behind him.  Basically everyone is with him.  That gives you, of course, an extra edge to whoever you play on the other side.
But I think at the same time that adds a little bit of pressure.  But I don't think that's going to be an issue during the match.
On the other hand, there's no point for me or there's no value of me to give any comment about his coaching situations.  Obviously it works out and that's the most important thing.

Q.  Andy hasn't dropped a set yet in this tournament.  If you can be the first person to take a set off him, do you think that will put him under the kind of pressure he hasn't experienced for a while?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Well, Andy, he's a great defender and a great returner.  It's not the easiest thing to do, especially when you play against him.
I've seen a couple of his matches, the previous matches, so I kind of know how he's dealing with some of the serves.
You know, I just got to go out on the court and perform and play my game.  Just go through that, you know.

Q.  Today you have achieved what no other Bulgarian male tennis player has achieved so far.  How does this make you feel?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  It feels good.  It obviously feels good.  You know, I don't want to stop here.  Again, I hope there's going to be a lot more first times for me.  I'm just aiming to be better and better every time.

Q.  How big a disadvantage is it for you on a day like today to be put on a court without a roof?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Well, I mean, it is what it is.  There's certain things that you got to go along with.  I'm not complaining from Court1.  Doesn't matter that it doesn't have a roof.  I'm pretty happy to play on that court.
Of course with the rain, it was a bit tricky but it all end up in a good way.

Q.  In terms of fitness, do you think you can go five sets with Andy?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Oh, yeah.  I mean, I've been working for all those moments.  And I think it's a great feeling to get into that kind of a match.
I mean, of course, best‑case scenario is straight sets.¬† In the end of the day I'm not playing against a mediocre player, so I just need to be on my best behavior and in the same time just go out there and try to put every ball back.

Q.  Can you talk a moment about your own coach, Roger Rasheed, what he's brought to your game.  I know he has an Aussie Rules background.  Is there anything from that sport that...
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I haven't played that yet.  It's not the best thing to run into him, that's for sure (smiling).
What can I say?  Discipline.  Better shot selections.  You know, there's just bunch of things that are top of my head.  But, as I said, we never focus on one thing in particular.  We always try to work on things.
I think the most important thing is to really give 100% from each other every day because I think this is what we both deserve and what we owe to the game.

Q.  Is that why you've been so successful this year?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I had a lot of clicks around me, if I can say it like that.  So I guess a lot of things are to get into their path.
At the moment it feels good.  We just work towards one goal.  As long as we're on the same page, nothing else matters.

Q.  You've been hotly tipped for a while now.  How close are you to consistently challenging the big four for Grand Slams and titles?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Well, I'm going to have another chance on Wednesday to challenge.  This is the positions I want to be every slam and every tournament that they're on, whoever I'm playing.  That's the matches I want to play.  That's the matches I want to face.
There's nothing better for me.  Obviously you've put so much work, you've been patient enough, all that.  So you want to be at that stage.

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