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August 28, 2014

Milos Raonic


M. RAONIC/P. Gojowczyk
7-6, 5-7, 6-4, 7-6
An interview with:

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You said at the end you showed courage that had been lacking a little bit earlier. Can you explain what you meant?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah, just when it came down to it, that 5-All game, I was fine with missing a few forehands, but I actually started hitting my forehands. Sort of allowed me to free up in the rest and I think that's why I think I served well. I was dictating more following that point just because I sort of said, Okay, let's worry about doing the right thing, not sort of trying to gut this through the wrong way.

Q. I noticed you were having a bit more discussion or looking towards your player's box more frequently during that match. Were you looking for encouragement?
MILOS RAONIC: I was just sort of in some situations not necessarily sure if I was doing the right thing. You can sort of see it on the faces of people most of the time.

Q. In a lot of ways you are similar, going for your shots a lot. Did you feel you were calmer in the long run and that would work out for you?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah. Well, the thing is I wasn't going for it enough. That was my issue today. He plays quite flat, quite low to the net, lower margin for error, I would say. But also, at the same time when he defends that way, if he just even puts it through the middle, it's hard for me because the ball never really comes up to my strike zone like against most guys. I think this and grass would probably be his best surfaces. It's tough. It's tough to play him when he's making those shots and moving as well as he was in the beginning. He sort of slowed down in the end, as did I. Not because I was tired. I was playing the wrong way. I was sort of letting myself fall into his routine. Then I just picked it up at the end.

Q. Do you know the name of your next opponent? Do you know him beforehand?

Q. Do you maybe even know the amazing story behind him?
MILOS RAONIC: I don't know his amazing story. I know I played him 2010. I saved a few match points in a Davis Cup match against him.

Q. Are you overall happy with how you played tonight?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah. It's about getting through. It's about finding a way and getting through. That's what I was able to do. I have one day now to get better and I know I'll play better my next match.

Q. You didn't serve very well at the beginning, your first-serve percentage. It came up as the match went on. What was the problem early on?
MILOS RAONIC: I wasn't focusing on the right things. I got a little bit caught up, because I thought he was playing really well at the start. Rather than just focusing on my stuff and sort of getting through that way and think, Okay, keep this up, I was getting a little too caught up in him rather than focusing on myself.

Q. Is it a blessing in disguise to have that type of match at this point of the US Open?
MILOS RAONIC: I don't think it matters. There's too many variables when a draw comes out, whatever may happen with weather today being quite windy, those things don't really matter. You just have to deal with things as they come and find a way to win. It could have been perfectly calm today and been a different story. Who knows. There's no hidden value in this match.

Q. Can you explain what was going on with the towels at the beginning, them blowing around.
MILOS RAONIC: It was just blowing around. The umpire told the ball boy to grab my drink and put my drink on it. I don't think you should be telling somebody to touch my stuff. That's just what I sort of told him.

Q. Were you surprised that all of a sudden you lost that second set? He hit that incredible return, you missed the volley, looked like you weren't going to be able to be in control the rest of the way?
MILOS RAONIC: I just didn't do the right things throughout most of the match. I can't say I was necessarily surprised he went for it at that point and took it away from me. He did the same thing in the fourth set. He went for it at the beginning. Then I sort of found my way. He sort of gifted me a little bit. I was sort of creating more opportunities in the fourth as well.

Q. Are there many guys that play like him?
MILOS RAONIC: Not as low percentage. I think maybe he can be sort of compared to Gilles Simon, but he goes for a lot more. That lack of height over the net, keep a ball very low when you're defending, that kind of stuff, always make a guy hit up. So I think in that aspect, Gilles is probably the only guy that plays that low to the net but in a different standard. One guy plays quite defensive and the other guy plays more aggressive with it. It's tough really to play that way well week in and week out, but he's been doing it. He played great this week. He played great last time I played him in Halle.

Q. Taking into account the game four years ago in Davis Cup, apart from that close match, I think it went to five sets, Victor mentioned that in the press conference, do you remember something about that match? Are you going to think about it for preparing this match now?
MILOS RAONIC: No. Things are very different. I think we were both a similar ranking at that time. I think I was around maybe probably 400, maybe 300s at that time, getting close to 200. I'm not exactly sure. I know I broke through later that fall. Now I'm whatever it is, 6, 7 in the world. I think he was there, as well, between maybe 250 and 350 at that moment. Now he's a top 100 player. Things are very different. That match, considering what's going to happen in two days, has almost no value.

Q. There will be probably hundreds of fans from the Dominican Republic. They probably will not be cheering for you. Is it still something you think you will enjoy?
MILOS RAONIC: I will. I've been in a lot of necessarily difficult situations, playing Davis Cup in Serbia, all these kind of things. Those things don't really matter. I think it's fun when there's a good atmosphere on the court. That's one thing that stands out in this Grand Slam that I specifically enjoy.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
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