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May 29, 2015

Damir Dzumhur


R. FEDERER/D. Dzumhur
6-4, 6-3, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English.

Q. Can you tell us how was it to play in this big stadium first time against Roger? Was it overwhelming? Entertaining? How did you feel?
DAMIR DZUMHUR: I guess it was entertaining. I really was excited before the match. I didn't feel that much pressure like I felt with Berdych last year, or with Ferrer. So I came a bit more relaxed on the court and started good. That was okay. So I feel that everything was okay. My game was good. I just can say that Roger played really too good today. He was playing so aggressive with all kind of shots. Big congratulations to him. Of course I was always telling that he's the best tennis player for me, and today he show why.

Q. Were you able to forget that he's your idol?
DAMIR DZUMHUR: Well, I was warming up and I was still not believing that I'm playing Roger Federer. Really I was so strange feeling, like I'm dreaming. But then suddenly I switched when I started to play. Most important thing was that I started to serve good in the first set. Then was easier to play with him. Otherwise he would be even more dangerous without a good serve.

Q. Very impressed with the way you handled yourself in the whole thing today. There are many idols, Roger Federer has many idols. I mean, when you're on the receiving end, people sometimes say that he's like an artist when he plays tennis. Were there times today when you saw him do things and you just thought, Wow, it's like tennis' Picasso?
DAMIR DZUMHUR: Yeah, well, really the way he is playing is solid, as the way he's moving on the court. Sometimes you don't even have feeling how fast he is on the court, how fast he's moving and how good hands he has. He knows every shot how to hit perfectly. Yeah, some of the points we really played good; I played good also some of the points. Overall I'm really happy with my game. Even after the match I watched some statistic, so I have more winners than unforced errors in the whole match. So I didn't play bad. He was just really good today.

Q. How important is tennis for Bosnia? Do the whole country watch you? Do you help to make the country better after all the suffering in the civil war?
DAMIR DZUMHUR: Well, it's a little bit strange, but few people from Bosnia told me that today everybody was in cafes or in homes - nobody in streets - watching me. I am playing just third round of Grand Slam, but for Bosnia it's -- some things from Bosnia, our football team playing finals of Champions League, it's like that. So I'm happy that all the people was with me today, that I had a lot of friends coming -- came to watch me today on court, and of course my family and my coach. I just feel that this match is going to help me for the next matches, and I hope that I'll have more of those matches. That's what you need in your career if you want to make it bigger.

Q. What are your ambitions for the rest of the season? Your ranking now compared with last year has gone up a lot. You've improved obviously a lot to get to the third round here and in Australia. What is your target for the rest of the year?
DAMIR DZUMHUR: I would like to finish top 60 this year. That was the goal after I got in top 100 this year. I think I can make it. I'm playing pretty good. I have a good season so far. I've made a lot of points already until June. I just hope that I'm going to make a few more points to get in main draw of US Open, and then the season is going to be really perfect for me. Of course if I finish top 60, that would be wonderful. If not, I'm going to try to continue to work hard to be in there next year.

Q. Two days ago you told how difficult it is to be a tennis player in Bosnia. Do you think this might help, you know, that people see you, you know? If you tell, you know, there should be more coach, should more easy for people to play tennis, do you think this helps that whole country is watching you?
DAMIR DZUMHUR: It helped me, of course. But already I have a really lot of people behind me and watching me and everything. But I'm not afraid now for me. I'm afraid for next generations that are coming. They don't have support. It's not going to help. I know. Even when I was junior, I was No. 3 junior but I didn't have any support from federation, no support from country. This is not going to help anything, I'm sure. Every time I make some good result they say it's historic result and I'm hero and everything. It's okay. I made good result, but what about next generation? They need coaches and courts and facilities. They don't have it. Unfortunately the situation of tennis in Bosnia is really bad.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
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