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July 27, 2016

Denis Shapovalov

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

G. DIMITROV/D. Shapovalov

6-4, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Obviously a battle there. Even Dimitrov after was saying he was lucky to win the match. What do you take from this whole experience?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: I don't think he was lucky at all. Obviously he's the more experienced player and he's a great player. Obviously he should be top 10. He's got the game.

To take out of this match, you know, I had a chance. I had -- I forgot what the score was, but I had a pretty easy ball and then I missed it, and then right after that I got broken. So I've got to clean up those shots, not miss a couple of easy shots.

Credit to him. He kind of figured out my game. He started playing very smart against me tonight. Too bad I couldn't serve better today. Otherwise, you know, I could have made it even closer.

Q. What do you take away from the whole tournament experience, being here?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, for sure it's been great, but I'm not gonna think about this result too much. Every week is not going to be like this. It's going to be ups and downs, obviously.

Next week is a new week. I'm going to go out and play every match the same way I do here and see how it goes. I'm not going to think of anything if I lose first round or anything.

It could happen and it's tennis. You know, you never know. But obviously I'm going to try my best, fight every point and see where it goes.

Q. This result this week probably puts you inside the top 300 for the first time in your career. What does that do for you going into challenger tournaments and things like that from here?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, of course it's going to be easier for me to get into tournaments now. It definitely benefits my game. Yeah, other than that, you know, I'm not thinking about my ranking too much. I'm thinking about improving my game and how to not -- you know, like I'm trying to see my game, you know, one, two years from now, how to hit the top 100, how to hit the top 50. Not think about my ranking is at 300 now or it's 250, whatever it is.

Q. Milos was in here about 45 minutes ago singing your praises and just talking about the growth of tennis in Canada. How does it feel to be part of that new wave of young Canadian tennis players doing so well?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, of course it's exciting. I mean, we've got so many players coming up. Not even me. We've got Benjamin, we've got Felix, you know. We've got so many fantastic prospects.

So of course it's exciting for Canadian tennis. We are very happy to be a part of it. The best part is I feel -- you know, there are kids after the match saying, You're in my heart. Even though you lost, it doesn't matter. Like they believe in me. They see me as a role model.

That's very inspiring for me, first of all, but also it motivates them to work harder because they want to become like me or like Felix or like Ben.

Q. Just on that topic of role models, I know I talked to you before and you said Roger Federer was your role model. I'm wondering, continuing on that point about Milos, how much do you look up to him and his success?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, of course I'm looking up a lot now. I mean, in the past couple years he's been doing what no Canadian has ever done. Of course it's very exciting, and, you know, he's such a great guy, too.

He came up to me today, he said, Congratulations for yesterday. Good luck for today.

He's one of those guys that doesn't -- you know, he doesn't act what his ranking is. He's down to earth, and he's really humble. That's what I like about him so much. You know, he's just a normal guy.

Q. Obviously people are now just starting to see this new wave of Canadian tennis players. When did you get the sense that you were part of this special group that could have an impact on tour?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: To be honest, I think we always had a very good group of kids. Even younger we had even more kids that were so good. We had Victor Krustev. I'm not saying they are bad right now. They are very good too. We just shot up a little bit more now.

Victor Krustev, Alexis Galarneau, Jack Mingjie-Lin, all very good players, very talented. I think even they, you know, helped us work harder and thrive a little bit, you know.

I never wanted to lose to Victor or to Jack, obviously, being rivals in Toronto. That inspired me to work harder. Same with Alexis and Felix. They are very good friends, but at the same time they are rivals. That kind of pushed us to work harder, and that's why we are where we are now.

Q. Do you know what your schedule looks like going forward for the summer?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Right now I'm just -- all I know is that I'm playing Granby and Gatineau. I'm not looking too much forward ahead after that, but I think I'm going to have a training phase. I've played so many matches this year already, so a little down time off is going to be good for me, I think.

Q. Was there anything during these couple of matches that you come away from thinking that you really have to work on?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: I think I really need to improve my serve. I thought I had a good serve until I played Kyrgios who was just bombing aces past me. Same with Dimitrov. He was blocking my serve back like nothing when I was putting it in. I think my percentage wasn't very high today.

I'd say my serve and just a little more experience. You know, I felt like Grigor really figured me out after -- you could see he really thinks during the match. He changes a lot of things up.

I feel like I was keeping my game the same. I didn't really have a chance today to try to figure him out, you know, see where he's not feeling good today.

I mean, that comes with experience. Just playing more matches, more tough matches like that will improve me.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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