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October 5, 2014

Novak Djokovic


N. DJOKOVIC/T. Berdych
6‑0, 6‑2

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  Tomas Berdych said, I played 600 matches and I never met anyone playing like Novak tonight.  What do you think of your performance?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  It's definitely flattering to hear something like that coming out from a player who has been around for so many years, an established top‑10 player.
As I said on the court, this has been, under the circumstances, probably the best performance in all finals in my career I played.  It was incredible.  Incredible.  Especially against Tomas, who has a big game and, as I said, is already an experienced player.  It was 6‑Love, 5‑Love, under an hour.  Everything I tried worked.  To be proud of the performance is the least I can say of what I played tonight.

Q.  Did you expect to come out and play like this?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  No, of course not.  I mean, I do kind of expect from myself a lot, especially in the big matches, especially if I haven't dropped a set in the tournament.  That is probably my best tournament, you know, in career.
I did have high expectations.  But to play this well, to give two games to one of the top players, no, I definitely haven't expected that.

Q.  What happened on the first match point?  It was too easy for you?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Look, I think anything I say can be taken wrong right now.  I just say that the result finished the way it finished, and I cannot be happier with performance.

Q.  Can I ask what you and Tomas said to each other at the end?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, obviously you don't know what to say.  From my side it feels a little bit uncomfortable coming to the net.
But he reacted very well.  We're good friends, practice a lot with each other.  We have a good relationship off the court, respect on the court.
He said, This was pretty awesome.  He smiled.  I smiled back.  I said, Good tournament.  That's all I can say after the match like this.

Q.  Would you rate it as your greatest‑ever performance over best‑of‑three rather than best‑of‑five match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Yeah, best‑of‑three, as I said just a few minutes ago, it's probably the best finals I played.  I did play some great finals, some convincing wins, some straight‑set wins against top rivals.  But with this kind of performance and with this domination result‑wise, I mean, never happened.

Q.  At what point in today's match did you start to realize that everything was firing on all cylinders?  Does that happen in warmups, first set, second set?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Overall I woke up with a good feeling, let's say.  Just prepared myself, did everything right from the last point of the semifinals to get myself in a perfect possible state physically and psychologically to perform well in the finals.  I had more than enough time.
You know, I did a few warmups, a little bit in the gym earlier today.  Then, of course, before the match on the court.  Everything felt right.  I was very positive, kind of looking forward to compete.
So I stepped on the court with this positive mindset.  Obviously I felt it from the start.  As soon as I broke him first game, I felt the ball well.

Q.  You're the No.1 player.  You won the tournament five times.  You have a beautiful wedding.  You will be a father.  Can life be any better?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  No.  Thanks for reminding me because sometimes you do need a reminder, how things are going well for me in my life.  On the tennis court, off the tennis court, I can't ask for more.  I'm very grateful.
I keep on going, keep on being in the present moment, living this life with a full joy.

Q.  You shared your language skill tonight again.  We wonder if you really know what it means.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I know what it means.

Q.  Pretty lady, why do you want to learn that?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  There's a lot of pretty ladies around here in China.  That's what they taught me.

Q.  Yesterday I asked you how about changing China Open to Nole Open.  What is your feeling right now and what does this title mean to you?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Every title is definitely special.  I still keep the same opinion that this should be called China Open, if that's what you ask me.
Well, I'm going to try to use this great week to kind of carry this overall positive feeling into Shanghai and have another great week there.

Q.  Always playing great tennis all these years in Beijing.  Do you feel like China Open is the ultimate challenge for other players to try to beat you here?  Everyone wants to beat Rafa at the French.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  It's hard to say.  I mean, I think that's a question for somebody else.  You know, I do what I have to do, try to win as many matches as I can in any tournament.  But here particularly there is this streak going on.  Of course I want to keep it going for as long as possible.  I'll come back next year, keep on playing.
As I said, that's something that you have to ask somebody else.  I mean, still Rafa at the French, which is a Grand Slam, it's a higher category of tournament comparing to this one.
Some top players were lacking in the draw here, but still it was strong.  I felt like a lot of top players were here playing this week.  To be able to win it without dropping a set is a pretty amazing achievement.

Q.  You have five China Open titles.  I think you are even more popular than our home favorite Li Na.  Do you have any words for her?

Q.  Yes.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, unfortunately I haven't been present at the ceremony when they announced her retirement earlier this week.
But it's a pity that she was not able to at least finish her career here, playing the tournament in front of her home crowd.  Obviously the injury got the better out of her.  I'm sure she would keep on playing if she could, but probably the injuries kept her away.  Injuries are the biggest enemy that an athlete can have.
But she had a great career, winning two Grand Slams, reaching No. 2 of the world.  For Chinese tennis, this was great.  Hopefully that can have a positive impact on many kids around China that can take the tennis racquet in their hands, try their luck, and become Grand Slam champions in the future.

Q.  You've spoken a lot about the Chinese fans this week.  What is it like for you being a guy from Serbia in China, to see all these specifically Chinese fans holding up flags and signs?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I mean, it happens so often now in last five, six years that I've been coming back to China, in a way they became a part of my team, you know, part of my every day here in China.  In the morning in the hotel they're there wishing me a nice day, good luck.  In the evening when I come back to the hotel, they're again there waiting for me and congratulating me, giving me presents.
So because of the experiences that I had with presents in the last few years, I'm always taking an extra bag so I can carry those presents back to Europe with me.  I appreciate that very much.  I'm very grateful to have such loyal fans and support.
I don't experience this level of support and loyalty anywhere in the world for a tennis player.  I mean, Serbia of course is my home country.  I have a lot of great fans there.  I have a lot of great fans around the world.  But these kind of fans here, it's just amazing what they're doing.
They're literally the whole day here in Beijing just for me, just to support me and spend a few minutes a day with me.  That's something that I cannot take for granted.  I'm feeding off their energy and trying to give them back on the tennis court as much as I can.
Well, also because Serbia and China, even though Serbia is comparing to China very small, small country, have great relationships over the years, throughout the history.  The countries got along very well.  I do feel very welcome as a Serbian here.

Q.  As for the support of Chinese fans, in your eyes why do they love you?  Because of your personality or some characteristics?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, I don't know.  I mean, that's, again, a question for somebody else.  I try to perform the best that I can in front of them on the tennis court.  I guess the main reason why they support me and follow me is because I play good tennis.  Then after I guess also because of the personality.
We got to see many of them over the years.  They're the same teenagers, the same people who come every year to support me.  We became friends in a way.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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