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July 3, 2015

Novak Djokovic


6‑3, 6‑3, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  Can you talk through what happened at the end when you walked off the court, with the prosthetic limb.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I just signed it.

Q.  What is the most unusual thing you've been asked to sign?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, that's probably the first time, maybe second time, that I've signed prosthetic limbs.  I hope I gave him some luck and he's going to feel better.

Q.¬† During that match, a number of times, especially in the middle section, Love‑30 on your own serve, then you play unbelievable tennis.¬† Is it you getting angry or you staying calm, a mixture?¬† Didn't seem fair on Bernie at times.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:¬† Well, I just I guess try to get extra concentrated in those moments when I'm down Love‑30 or a breakpoint.¬† Obviously I know the importance of holding your serve on the grass court.¬† It's not easy to break players like Bernard, who have a good serve.
I managed to get a lot of returns back in play.  I think I executed tactically everything I intended before the match to move him around the court, mix up the pace, not really give him the same look.
I think overall I played a really, really good match.

Q.  I was wondering if you watched Rafa's match yesterday.  If yes, you know him so well, are you surprised to see he can't really find his game back?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, I think Dustin played exceptionally well and he deserved to win.
But I think, as Rafa said, that's sport.  I mean, he won two times title here and played five finals.  I don't think that's too bad.
That's something that obviously for him adds up to extra pressure and expectations to any tournament he goes.  He sets himself a very high standard anywhere he goes.
The first‑week exits happen in Grand Slams, of course it makes a headline story.
But, you know, for last couple of years he's been losing in the first week in grass court.  It's not easy to come back in the same tournament, the surface I think he prefers the least, and get that necessary confidence.
It seems like he needs a little bit more matches to get into that comfort zone on the court and start feeling more confident.  But he hasn't had a chance.  But also, you know, if you look at the opponents he has lost to, they all probably played matches of their lives.  They had nothing to lose.
You got to just hand it to them, congratulate them, and move on.

Q.  As someone who enjoys golf and someone who enjoys Grand Slams, what are your thoughts about Jordan Spieth and his being halfway to the Grand Slam in golf, him doing this well at this young an age?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:¬† Yes, he has won I think back‑to‑back major golf events, which is incredible.¬† He's young.
I think for a global sport like golf, and tennis, whenever you would have a very young Grand Slam winner, it makes a big story.  People want to see that.  People like to see that.
At the challenging times of these individual sports where it gets more physical, more demanding in every aspect of the game, it's not easy for youngsters to reach that high level and win a slam.
So he's been doing exceptionally well.  We are all admiring his skills.

Q.  I know we are in Wimbledon and is a goal for you.  Here the Argentinian Army are excited because they're playing with Serbia in 10 days Davis Cup.  We want to know if you're going to come to Buenos Aires, what is your plan?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Unfortunately I can't give a final answer today if I'm coming or not.  I will see when I am done with this tournament how I feel.  I'm already talking with my captain, national captain, all the colleagues, informing them that I still haven't made a final decision.  We're talking about it.
So I'm not sure.  I really do always look forward coming to Argentina.  I had the time of my life last time, the first time I was there a few years ago.  Went Patagonia, Buenos Aires three or four days, played a few exhibition matches with Nadal and Nalbandian.  It was really nice to be in a country that is so beautiful, but also loves and respects tennis and sport in general, very passionate.
Hearing from the other players who played Davis Cup in Argentina, it's a special experience, very unique experience, with the crowd that cheers very enthusiastically for their team.  It would be good to experience that.

Q.  What are your thoughts looking ahead to your next match, Kevin Anderson?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Another big server and somebody that is in a great form.  I think he is probably playing the tennis of his life all in all.  He's reached the highest ranking now in his career.  He keeps on going forward.  I think he improved his movement and his game from the baseline.  He always had a very good serve.
You know, I think it's going to be a game of very small margins that will be decided by a few points.  So I need to be able to get as many returns back in play.  I'll try to mix up the pace, something similar to what I've done today.  Hopefully I'll be on the high level against Kevin.

Q.  When Maria Sharapova was in here a few minutes ago, she said every time she walks on to the grounds she thinks about the experience of having won the Championship here.  When you walk onto the grounds or step on the court, what images of your past experiences are back in your mind?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  They are present.  Obviously you always like to have a positive mindset going into the court.  You always want to have those thoughts that give you that motivation and inspiration to play your best, I believe cherish the moments on the courts.  There is a lot of pressure in play, as well.
So it's really a mind game that you're playing with yourself in trying to get yourself into your right state of mind.
But, you know, having played so many times on the big stage, especially here, the most special tennis court in the world, you get that necessary experience and knowledge, what is right for you, what you need to think about in order to get yourself in that state of mind that you want to be.
But I try to put myself only in the present moment, not fight against the thoughts and the pressure and the excitement, but just acknowledge them and be aware of present thoughts, but also try to, you know, keep my composure and calm.
I believe that the most part of the work that you do, basically what you can influence, is the preparation work before you get to the court.¬† So that's something that I always try to do 100% professionally and keep that self‑discipline.¬† When I get to the court, I know that I've done everything in my power to be prepared for what's coming my way.¬† Then everything else is in God's hands that day.
I try to just be in the moment and enjoy.

Q.  You are playing very well.  How do you judge yourself currently how you play?  What part of your game are you most working on?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I'm trying to build my game in general.  There is nothing specifically I've been working on.  Just every stroke in my game is getting better each match.  That is something that is obviously very encouraging to see.
I'm pleased with the performances so far.  The second week is obviously always more challenging, more difficult than the first week.  But I'm ready for it now.  I have two days.  I'm going to work on the court, get myself recovered and ready for a challenge that is presented in the second week.

Q.  John McEnroe said that Rafa may have to reconsider having the same coach for so many years.  You have hired a very experienced coach, and so have other top players.  Do you agree with McEnroe and what do you think that Rafa should do?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I think, what was it, a year and a half ago, we had signed Boris Becker, Ivanisevic, Chang, Edberg at the same time coming to take on the coaching roles, come into the active, professional men's tennis.  That was obviously a big news.  It's great to have these legends on the tour.
Of course, Amélie Mauresmo and Jonas Bjorkman with Andy.  Most of the top players have chosen to have some players and people who have had experience in playing on the highest level, winning championship trophies, slams, understanding the kind of a challenge that you are facing and helping you to become a better player.
Naturally then, because of the circumstances, Nadal had this question asked for so many times in the last year or so, if he was willing to change the coach or not.
Honestly, I don't see a big reason for this to happen.  I think he's going to answer better.  But from what I've seen, he's saying it's not necessary.
He has won 14 Grand Slam titles.  He's one of the best players in the game with his Uncle Toni that has been with him for his entire career.  If he needs it or not, it's for him to judge and for him to decide.  I'm really not in the position to express my opinion whether it's good or not.

Q.  You've been coached by Marian for many years before Boris came on your team.  How is it to get used to another voice?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  It's a big decision.  Whoever comes in your team, whether it's really a legend of the sport, whoever you choose to have as a fresh part of your team, it's a change.  Every change requires a certain period of adjustment I think mentally, as well, for you as a player to understand how this person works, lives, thinks.
Everybody has different ways of approaching things in life.  Everything affects your performance, the way you approach things in life on the court, off the court.  It's a very holistic approach at the end of the day.
In order to get the best and most benefit out of this cooperation, you need to really have the right chemistry.
For Boris and me, it took some time.  That's what I was saying in the beginning of the partnership or relationship, whatever you want to call it, when we started back in January 2014, that it's going to take some time for us to really get on the same kind of frequency of the mind and thinking, to really start making big results.
It started all with finals of Roland Garros, we won Wimbledon here last year, made great results, finished No.1 of the world.  So results are there.
This year is obviously different.  It takes less effort and less time to really understand what we think and when is the proper moment to talk about tennis or something else.  But it does take time.  It's not something that happens overnight.

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