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August 8, 2014

Feliciano Lopez


F. LOPEZ/M. Raonic
6‑4, 6‑7, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  Can you talk a little bit about the match, especially about your net play?  It was very clean and very effective.  Is that one of your favorite approaches during matches like this?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  Well, the match was very close.  I got a break in the first set.  He didn't serve that good in that game, so I got the break, I won the set.
The second set was very close, to be honest.  I didn't face any break points in the second set, and we went to the tiebreak and I think he played a little bit better than me.
I hit a couple of mistakes, one double fault, easy volley, and then this point where I fell down when I was facing a set point down, so it was very difficult for me to come back after losing the set, because I thought that I might, you know, play a little bit better in the tiebreak.
I was lucky I went for the shots in that long game when I faced nine break points, and the end, somehow I made another break.
I think he was thinking still about the game I held my serve.  I think that's probably something what he was thinking at that moment.

Q.  With Milos Raonic basically playing on home territory, obviously there was an elevated crowd presence behind him.  Did you feel that was an extra obstacle you had to overcome?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  Yeah, of course.  The crowd was very excited.  They were fair, I have to say, but noisy.
When the match was close at the end I was feeling the pressure.  When I was missing my first serve they were yelling a little bit more than normal, but this is tennis and we are playing in Canada and I totally understand, no?  It's normal, no?
If we would have played in Madrid it would be the same with me (smiling).

Q.  What do you think about the wave that started?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  I like it.  I like it when the crowd and the people get involved in the matches and they create this nice atmosphere.  It's really a pleasure to play in front of 15,000 people like this.

Q.  You and Milos are really good friends.  How is this going to affect your relationship?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  It's not going to affect anything.  I mean, why?  We're gonna play for sure more in the future.  We played already four times.  Today was the fourth one.  This is tennis.  We gonna face each other again.

Q.  How important was something like a Davis Cup experience?  We have seen a couple of players who struggled against a big crowd this week.
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  Yeah, it's important.  I'm 32 years old, and I have played in, you know, a couple matches like this and Davis Cup or playing at home in Madrid.
And, yeah, it's good to have played at least few more times in a good atmosphere like this where you feel the pressure and when you know that the crowd is going to be excited, when you know the match is going to be tight.
But in the other way it's fun to play like this.  I mean, these matches, you always dream to play them.  And, yeah, this is a great match to play, I have to say.

Q.  What was your game plan going in?  Did you want to attack his backhand?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  My game plan basically is to be aggressive.  This is the way I have to play every player.
I mean, with Milos I have to be aggressive, because if not, he's going to dominate.  But I have been doing this game the whole week and it was working perfectly.  So for me there was no reason to change playing Milos today.

Q.  Can you think of any time even remotely similar in your career where you faced something like nine break points on your own serve?  Can you just talk about how you were able to maintain your focus during that?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  Very tough to say.  I mean, I went for the shots.  My serve was working in all of the break points I think.
Some second serves I hit like 190, 180 second serve.  They were in, and, you know, a little bit of luck, as I said in the court.  I mean, to save nine break points in the same game, even though I played great most of them, I have to get a little bit lucky.

Q.  Can you think of another time where anything like that has happened?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  To face, I don't know, nine?  I don't think so.  It's too much.

Q.  Milos was visibly frustrated at times.  When you're on the other side of the net, what's it like when your opponent kind of vents after making an error?
FELICIANO LOPEZ:  I think the match was, you know, very close.  We have been through difficult situations during the match where you feel tight, when you're nervous.
I was feeling the same, and I think he was also feeling, no?  Because these matches, they go by one, two, three points, and, yeah, you feel the opponent getting tight, but he's feeling that you're also tight, no?

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