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January 23, 2016

Milos Raonic

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

M. RAONIC/V. Troicki

6-2, 6-3, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You had quite a run of not missing serve. How shaken up were you by losing your serve today?
MILOS RAONIC: Obviously not too bad. It was a great game played by him. I think I put on all my first serves and maybe just the first point I would have dealt with differently.

But other than that, it's a great game by him.

Q. How did you find out about the shooting, because I think you probably would have been asleep when it actually happened? How did you...
MILOS RAONIC: I can't remember. It was after I warmed up this morning. I was sitting at the restaurant just having a little bit of a snack before I go out on court to refuel. I can't remember who it was, either my parents or Carlos might have brought it up that something had happened.

I sort of just Googled it quickly to understand, to know. There wasn't much information available at the time other than the casualties and that somebody was apprehended.

Q. It seemed like such a heartfelt gesture afterwards, what you said on the court. Were you thinking, like, you know, I need to let people know back home that they're in my thoughts, or was that spontaneous?
MILOS RAONIC: Well, I don't want to really -- even though I heard about it before my match, I was very much into the match. I felt that after the match would be a little bit more appropriate for my thought, focus, and everything. It was something that I thought about and that I was glad that I had the opportunity to mention something.

I know there is a lot of Canadians that stay up. Stuff like this doesn't happen much back home. I'm sure not just in that small community but throughout Canada it was a lot of people that were sort of heartbroken over it.

Q. When is the last time you felt this healthy?
MILOS RAONIC: Probably Indian Wells last year. Maybe a little bit before that. Or maybe even probably here last year. I would say it was more of a correct comparison.

Q. How do you see the next match going against Wawrinka?
MILOS RAONIC: Difficult. You know, he's playing well. He's played solid through what I have seen of his first three matches. I watched a little bit of him now. I have it within myself to be able to find the solution. The question is will I step up and do it? Hopefully I'm able to put the pieces together.

Q. You've both got a big serve. Is that a key to beating him?
MILOS RAONIC: Well, I think, you know, I like to work with my serve and my forehand. He likes to work with his serve and maybe find a way around -- sort of make you play off chipping returns and obviously likes to go for his backhand.

So I think we both have the very clear goal of wanting to dictate and control the pace of the match and the rhythm. I think it's who can do that better.

Q. Just how important is this match towards your progress, I guess, cracking the top 10?
MILOS RAONIC: Well, I don't think this match really makes a difference from, I think, regarding my ranking.

I don't think I move if I win the match. So it's not any more or any more relevant than it would be other than the fact it's a fourth round of a Grand Slam, and a Grand Slam that I would like to do much better at. That's pretty much where it ends.

Q. What have you learned from your other matches?
MILOS RAONIC: I think just the way to go about things, and the ways to play. I think the first time we played we had a good opportunity. I was up a mini break in the second-set tiebreak. Maybe it wasn't the first time we played, but in Cincinnati one of the first few times.

Then he got the better of me a few times consecutively. I felt like I played pretty good last time we played a match that counted in Rotterdam, and he's playing well and I think I have improved quite a bit since Rotterdam. Hopefully I can put that to use.

Q. You said the other day that you're hoping Carlos can help you switch off and relax between matches. How has he tried to do that for you?
MILOS RAONIC: No, he's just quick -- sort of like yesterday he sort of stays on top and says, Okay, what else do you need to do here? Then make sure you get out of here as soon as possible. Those kind of things. Even today following this, just to go through the steps that I need to take for myself and then move on and not necessarily spend too much time on things that aren't productive for my recovery process.

Q. So sometimes less is more?
MILOS RAONIC: Well, I don't think it's less is more. I think it's just not getting caught up in things. Maybe spending too much time here chitchatting in the locker room and this kind of stuff when you can watch the exact same matches in the comfort of a couch or bed in front of the TV, quiet and this kind of thing.

Q. You won Brisbane and played really well the last three games. Do you feel a lot more confident overall?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah, I believe so. I feel like I'm finding answers. I'm taking care of my serve. I'm creating opportunities on the return. I'm able to -- you know, I'm reacting much better, getting a lot more returns back in, putting more pressure on my opponents, so eventually the opportunities are coming to me.

Today and my first round was a lot more efficient in that sense. Against Tommy maybe not as much as I would like to be. The opportunities were still there.

So I think it's just really about keeping that cycle going forward. I know I'm going to -- it's not a question of will I create opportunities. I feel like I'm playing good enough tennis. I feel like I can. The question is will I make use of them?

Q. The match today generally obviously you got off to a good start. How would you sum it up? How would you say you played today? How happy are you with the way you played?
MILOS RAONIC: I thought I played well. I think it's definitely the best match I have played here in Melbourne so far this year. I thought I played smart. I thought I changed up things really well. Took care of my serve really well, mixed up my serve, was efficient at the net.

I think I would give myself an A grading on the way I was able to play. The only thing I thought maybe I got sucked into slicing too much beginning of the second set and letting him find the rhythm too much.

Q. You and your parents have had an incredible life experience coming from Montenegro to a new homeland. When something happens today like what happened in Saskatchewan, does that somehow put things in perspective and good fortune of being a worldwide athlete playing in the world and in good lifestyle?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah, it does for sure. Maybe to me today's match really sort of mattered heavily, and I would do everything I can to find a way to win.

But at the end of the day, to be in that situation -- there is five people that will never go back to school again. I'm not sure what happened with the other two that were in critical state. That's just far bigger than whatever thing I could have done on court today.

It's especially difficult, you know, when it's such a small community and it's a tragedy that's from within a certain group of people, most likely.

Canada has been phenomenal to myself, my brother, my sister, their kids, my parents. They came there. They worked very hard. They came with great education, very good heads on their shoulders with the simple thought of going there with almost nothing and just saying, We're doing this to give our kids the best opportunity possible.

I'm here because I moved to Canada and because my parents took me there in '94.

Q. Are you familiar with what happened to Andy Murray when he was a fifth grader and his experience then back in his life when there was a mass shooting in his hometown?
MILOS RAONIC: No, I am not. I didn't know about that.

Q. Would you prefer day or night? Any preference in the match against him?
MILOS RAONIC: I like playing at night. I have been good at day, so either is good with me.

Q. When you fell behind 4-1 in the third, what are you thinking? You looked very calm, composed. Is that how you're feeling inside, too?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah, I felt like I was there in all the return games.

So if it didn't happen to me or for me in that third set, I felt my opportunity would come. I think I had a few break chances maybe that I missed after I got broken, you know, so I didn't feel just because I got broken that I was out of control.

I felt like I was still on the right path and doing the right things and that time was going to give me an opportunity.

Q. Are you surprised by this decision from Ljubicic to work with Federer?
MILOS RAONIC: I think it's a great opportunity for him, and I think even before and outside of a professional relationship, there were very few players that were as friendly as they are.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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