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January 2, 2017

David Goffin

Doha, Qatar

D. GOFFIN/R. Haase

7-6, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Happy New Year.
DAVID GOFFIN: Happy New Year.

Q. Talk about the first set. Seemed that you both struggled on serve, but you saved ten of twelve big points. What was tricky for you?
DAVID GOFFIN: Yeah, it's never easy when you start the first tournament of the season. Then you are a little bit nervous. You can feel the stress a little bit before the match. That's why maybe I needed one game to be in the match.

Then I lost my serve, and directly I started to feel my game. He was quite solid. He played a good match. Robin moved really well in the first set. Then, yeah, it was a lot of rallies and break point to save.

But, yeah, at the end I'm happy to win the first set. Was not an easy set. Yeah, it was really slow conditions tonight with the humidity. The balls are big after few points. That's why it was not easy to play fast like I used to do.

But at the end, I'm really happy with the way I fought in the first set. Then I won the first set and was much better in the second.

Q. You told me in Abu Dhabi that you weren't necessarily feeling much pressure now that your ranking has gone up. Coming to this tournament and you're the No.4 seed, does it feel a little bit different?
DAVID GOFFIN: Yes, of course when you are the No. 4 seed you want to go at least normally on the paper semifinal.

But you have to win a lot of matches. As you see, the first one was tough. The second one will be against Pospisil or Verdasco. It's tough second round, and then you don't know in quarterfinal.

I'm going to take match after match. Yeah, sometimes there is some small pressure because you are one the best player in the tournament so there is a lot of expectation, but I'm going to try to use it to play my best tennis.

The best way to play my best tennis is just to be focused on what I have to do. Like I did in Abu Dhabi, even it's not a real tournament, it is now a really tournament. I'm happy to win the first match. I'm going to try to keep going like that.

Q. There is so little time between the end of last year and beginning of this year. When it's approaching, as the new year is starting, do you feel like, Oh, I wish there was more off time? Are you anxious to get back out there and start playing again? You can be honest.
DAVID GOFFIN: Yeah, a little bit both, because when we stay a little bit at home and then you are practicing hard the weeks are going so fast. Then all of a sudden it's almost the beginning of the season.

Then at one point you want to come back on tour and you're so excited. The other point you know it's already the beginning of the season. It was so fast. Yeah, it went so fast after the Masters in London.

Yeah, it's life. I'm feeling good mentally, because for me, it's always been the key to stay fresh mentally, because physically I know I can play week after week.

Mentally I'm feeling fresh, and that's the most important thing.

Q. I was wondering if you were approaching the schedule for 2017 any differently? You kind of see the top players are quite selective with tournaments. Are you doing anything different this year in terms of your schedule?
DAVID GOFFIN: I don't know yet for the moment. Of course the key will be the big tournaments, because obviously if you want to be at the top of the ranking you have to play your best tennis in the best tournament of the year. So it will be the key, like the Master 1000 and the Grand Slam.

Then I'm going to pick some amount 500 and 250 just in the perfect period, tournament I like.

So I don't know yet the full schedule, but there is again another tournament in Belgium this year, so at the end of the season maybe will be different.

So I don't know yet. We will see.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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