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November 7, 2015

Novak Djokovic

Paris, France

N. DJOKOVIC/S. Wawrinka
6‑3, 3‑6, 6‑0

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English.

Q. Were you at all worried after the second set? Did you feel you could get back in control?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I thought in the second, even though I lost the set, I felt there were games that were very close. I had close games and break points and I felt I'm there.
Okay, credit to Stan for playing great second set and coming back, winning five games in a row, obviously serving more accurately, you know, playing more powerful from the baseline back of the court, getting more balls back, and it worked for him. He played very well.
But I still felt like I was hitting the ball well. You know, with this kind of feeling and approach, I got to the third set and played the best set of the tournament so far.

Q. You're playing Andy next. Both of you, I think, dropped only one set. How do you see that match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Finals. Never know what's going to happen. Of course both of us playing for a trophy. We want to win it, and we want to win against each other.
You know, it's always special kind of challenge because we have the rivalry that goes back for a long time. Played just recently in Shanghai. Played one of my best matches against him. I'm hoping I can play, you know, as well as I did there. But, you know, I'm sure that he's going to try to do something different.
I have seen he is playing some terrific tennis this week. He's feeling good. It's going to be a close one. No question about it. It always is. It's always very physical, also very psychologically demanding. We push each other to the limit, and I don't expect anything less from that.

Q. Going back to the final set today, when you've lost the second set like that, is there something psychologically important about stamping on his revival early in the deciding set?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Of course. That's what they say, psychologically it's the most important part of the deciding set, any set, you know, starting well, trying to make an early break, trying to make early lead that is going to help you to, you know, feel more confident and more comfortable on the court and make your opponent feel he's under pressure. So that's what happened.

Q. Do you get tired? Do you wake up and have some days you think, oh, I don't really fancy it today? Other guys say they have days like that. Do you have days like that?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Not at all (laughter).
Of course I do. Of course I do. But, you know, as anybody else, you do have some ups and downs and some days where you just don't feel like you want to feel like when you're getting on the court. But try to find that inner strength, try to do all the right things, get yourself in a right state of mind, first of all, but also physically get ready for the battle.
You can always do your best. Of course the best changes day to day. But it's just important to hang in there and know why you're there.

Q. Stan said that maybe you were getting a bit more tired here than in China, for example. But at the end, Novak remains Novak. Is it that easy, 2015, just Novak remaining Novak?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I don't know what he meant by that, but I get it as a compliment. It's great. I mean, it does flatter, for sure, when a player of his quality says something like that which I think he was referring to the stamina and, you know, the fitness which is definitely one of the things that I was working on very hard all these years, try to get that persistence and endurance. Just being able to have this energy supply to be able to play for a long time.
But also, you know, the fact that I have won so many matches allows me to also choose my schedule so I rarely basically never play three weeks in a row. You know, I always try to play two weeks and then have a week off. Tournaments, always important to make a proper schedule and think in advance strategically where you have to peak.

Q. During Andy Murray's match, the Canal+ showed an image of you turning up to practice and Stan was already there and then you had a joke and Boris Becker.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: He stole my court.

Q. How important is it to share a joke and have fun with a big rival before a match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I have this kind of, I feel like, a very special relationship with Stan, I think like no other top player, honestly. I do appreciate that. I do enjoy that kind of, you know, good relationship we have. I think that was strengthened even more after Roland Garros final.
Of course it was probably the biggest win he ever had and it was disappointing for me to lose that, but I felt like we had that special connection in the end.
Look, you know, in the end of the day, we are friends, we are people. Of course we both want to win. When we get on the court, it's all about business and getting the job done. You do everything what you can to win. But, you know, once the match is over, I mean, why not share some nice moments and joke around?

Q. He also said after that French Open final that he was the one who he thought scared you the most because he could push you backwards. Is that true?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: In what way?

Q. He said that I'm the one who can make Novak go back from the baseline. I scare him the most.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: He scares me with his presence, with his fancy shorts from Roland Garros (smiling). He is trying to provoke me with that, he put it on the bag. I saw that. We were joking around in the locker room about that.
Yeah, I mean, definitely he's one of the players that can push me backwards. The game at this level, it's I think most of the players are trying to protect the baseline, trying own the baseline, you know, and trying to dictate the play. So it's a little bit of play of cat and mouse, you know, who can stay on the line more.
So today I think that kind of momentum switched because I was the who one feeling great for a set and a half. And then he started changing up the pace and playing with more depth and pushed me back.
So, yeah, I agree that he's definitely one of the guys that can do that. Not scare me, but push me back, back and forth. So, yeah. That's it.

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