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May 12, 2016

Nick Kyrgios

Rome, Italy

R. NADAL/N. Kyrgios

6-7, 6-2, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How much do you think the match changed as you started feeling more problems with the hip early in the second?
NICK KYRGIOS: You know, not too much. Obviously I knew that his level was going to, you know, raise at some stage. He was going to just make himself play, you know, just better.

I feel like he has so much confidence on the clay that he knows if he goes a set down or set and a break he can still turn matches around. You knew it was going to come at some stage.

My hip was not great before the match either, but I knew my game plan and I knew I was going to try and play aggressive. It's bothering me but it didn't really bother me too much at all. I mean, I got a great physio. They help me a lot.

I mean, he just -- couple points here and there, it was tight and he just played well in the big points. That's pretty much it.

Q. As the match went on, it felt like we were watching classic Rafa from his glory days the way he was playing. Did he feel quite different as an opponent to the last time you played him?
NICK KYRGIOS: Yes and no. You know, I have just seen so much of him. I have watched him play. Not necessarily play him on the clay but you watch him play on the clay and you know how he's going to play.

To be honest, I didn't serve great at all today. I thought I served -- this is probably one of the worst matches I've served this year. I thought I competed well and I just played well from the back, played aggressive.

As I said, he's just going to make you play so many balls, and he comes up with some unbelievable shots under pressure.

Q. To go deep in the third against Rafa on clay, how good does that make you feel about your form going into the French Open?
NICK KYRGIOS: Yeah, it makes me feel confident. Obviously he's the greatest of all time on this surface. For me, you know, just when I was a bit younger, two years ago, we were always talking about playing Rafa on clay, and I always thought I'd get absolutely destroyed against him.

Then to play him and competing out there, deep in the third, three-hour match, it feels pretty good. Obviously I feel confident on the clay now. Going forward to the French Open, I feel confident.

Q. Many players and many coaches said that the next generation you are the closest player to the top level and excellent contender. Is that something that makes you proud? What's your opinion about that?
NICK KYRGIOS: Well, it's definitely right. You know, I think there is a lot of good young players. They all have great potential and will all have great careers.

I feel there's a guy I really like is Thiem. He's playing unbelievable. He's a little bit older, but I think he's the guy that is so consistent. He's playing well. And it's still a long way to go for all us young guys. I think Djokovic, Federer, Nadal, Murray, they are all still dominating.

Q. What's your preparation from here till whenever first round of Paris is?
NICK KYRGIOS: I'm heading to -- I'm probably going to stay in Rome tomorrow, I'm assuming. Get physio and just relax maybe.

I'm going to head to Paris for a week. I'm not playing anything next week, just relax there for a week, and obviously do everything I need to do to get my hip right and ease into the first week of French.

Q. How concerned are you that the hip might still be an issue in Paris?
NICK KYRGIOS: Well, my physio is flying in in a couple of days. I'm not too worried. He's a great physio. He'll know what to do. I've just got to manage it right. I've got plenty of time at the moment.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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