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May 24, 2016

Aljaz Bedene

Paris, France

A. BEDENE/G. Melzer

4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English, please.

Q. After all you were telling us you've been through in the past few months, how good does that win feel?
ALJAZ BEDENE: Yeah, I think it's really important to come out as a winner. Wasn't easy. First few points I made two double faults. I mean, I felt okay. When you do the first two double faults you feel like, Okay, it's going to be a grind.

The first set wasn't the best, but then I stepped in more, played my game more. Yeah, I mean, in the end I don't think I faced a break point in the last three sets, so that was helping.

In general, I'm happy with the performance.

Q. How much more pleasing is the fact that you did have the bad start and showed the mental strength to get through it?
ALJAZ BEDENE: Yeah, I mean, especially after I lost the first set I felt, yeah, not as good as I wanted to. Yeah, wasn't easy to get back, especially after losing the first set, to get back. Because I know I want playing well in the last few weeks.

But, yeah, I mean, I was practicing well, so that helped quite a lot. I have the been working a lot on few things with Leon. He helped me. And a few things which I have improved also in today's match.

But, yeah, I mean, after losing the first set and then winning three straight sets, yeah, just feels great. I know I played my game and I was fully focused. Just all the nonsense left behind, so it was good.

Q. Just on Leon, how much help has he been to you and what does he bring as a coach?
ALJAZ BEDENE: Well, together with my fitness coach, Martin Skinner, we been working really well.

Yeah, when someone has got that much experience as he does, it just brings something extra because you know you got something good next to you. He'll help you get the best out of you.

Sometimes I'm waiting too much. I been too passive. He's been helping me to be more aggressive, which I showed today, especially after losing the first set.

I just stepped in and played my game, which was great.

Q. With Leon, he's actually a guy that seems to be such a good communicator. That seems to be a big a part of his skillset. The technical tennis stuff, is that how you see him?
ALJAZ BEDENE: I see him as a great motivator as well. You know, especially after the British tennis had a great season last year. I think he's fully motivated as well to help me and to help others.

Just I mean, he's something extra. When you need special motivation, he's got that. It's just great working with him. I know he's been helping me through those days. It's not easy when you come to the French Open not so confident. He's brought something extra, so it was great.

Q. Do you think you would be working with him if you hadn't given up your holiday to hit with Andy ahead of the Davis Cup? Was that the catalyst for you two getting together?

Q. Because you spent some time, didn't you, with Andy?
ALJAZ BEDENE: With Andy, yeah, but Leon can help me on the Grand Slams, wherever he is.

Q. I was wondering if there was a particular time you spent a lot of time on court together?

Q. British fans in the crowd today. Seemed to be at least one person speaking your native language. Was that a friend or relative?
ALJAZ BEDENE: It wasn't. The one I heard was Serbian.

Q. At least he was backing you.
ALJAZ BEDENE: Yes, he was.

Q. I think it's the first time that there has been three British men through to the second round here since 1975. How good is it when you see other British players winning on the women's side as well?
ALJAZ BEDENE: Yeah, it's great. Kyle won yesterday. I know he was down 5-3 in the third and then showed some great game afterwards, winning I don't know how many games in a row. He's playing well obviously.

Andy, I was watching him just now. It's great that he came through this one because Stepanek is not easy to play against.

Yeah, I mean, I think British tennis in general is going up. We're playing better and better. Just great to see so many players in the second round.

I think Wimbledon is obviously the biggest one; British players love grass. I think it's going to be even better than here.

Q. Just on Leon again, how much can you work with him the rest of the year? Can he come to tournaments with you?
ALJAZ BEDENE: Well, hopefully if I get into Queen's he's going to be there, and then Wimbledon, and then...

Yeah, I mean, I'm trying to employ someone who I can work with full time. But, yeah, I mean, if I don't find anyone, especially on the tournaments he can help me, so that's a good option.

Yeah, I would love to get someone who can help me full time. Yeah, I wouldn't say he's a backup because I love to work with him. Yeah, I have to focus on finding my own coach.

Q. No doubt you kept an eye on the other match for your next opponent. I don't suppose you managed to see much. What do you make of your chances in the next round?
ALJAZ BEDENE: I played both of them I think twice so I know them pretty well. Yeah, I think Carreno was a set up, and I think this is going to be a long match. They know each other pretty well as well.

Yeah, I mean, whoever it's going to be, I have to play my game. If I play Delbonis it's going to be similar like today: a lot of heavy spins from his forehand. I'll just have to be aggressive and be focused on my game.

Q. You'd spoken to us before the tournament about how the various disappointments you've had affected you physically. How does a win like this affect you? Do you get a physical sensation from that as well, as if it's all gone away?
ALJAZ BEDENE: In a way, yes. Definitely feels really, really good. As I said, I did put a lot of effort into trainings to put my game on to the court. Especially after I lost the first set, winning three really good sets and haven't been broken or faced a break point, that brings another motivation and confidence to my game.

So, yes, I know I have to stick to my game, you know, and leave all the nonsense on the side and just focus. That's the main thing.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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