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April 21, 2017

Novak Djokovic

Monte Carlo, Monaco

N. DJOKOVIC/P. Carreno Busta

6-2, 4-6, 6-4

(Transcribed from an ATP recording.)

Q. Relieved to get through that?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: A very similar match like the one against Simon. Started well. Everything seemed to be working. Played very solid from the back of the court. I didn't give him too much time. Just felt comfortable. Set and 2-Love. Then five games in a row... A lot of unforced errors again.

Yeah, I mean, conditions were difficult on court, but it's the same for both of us. A couple of shots I was unlucky. I had some breakpoints here and there.

You know, in the end, again, 4-2 in the third set, easy put away backhand volley, smash. Yeah, I mean, I could have easily lost this match. He had quite an easy shot on 15-40 and 4-All. He missed it.

I mean, this is clay. I guess you can expect always an extra ball to come back. It's really cold the last couple of days. I think it slowed the conditions down, I mean, the court and the balls as well. Pablo was getting a lot of balls back.

I'll try to take the positives out of it. I think I've done well in certain parts of the match.

Q. You're playing David Goffin, you know well, practicing often together. How do you see that match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: He's a great guy, someone I of course respect a lot.

He's very quiet. He's hard-working. Very talented player. Comes out, you know, does his job. Of course, he's one of the quickest guys, has one of the best footworks, one of the best double-handed backhands.

He grew up I think on clay, so he loves playing on this surface. He beat Thiem today, definitely one of the best players on this surface in the world. For sure is going to be a tough one.

Q. Is there anything you're very satisfied about or unsatisfied?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Of course, I'm satisfied. Both matches, especially today, I mean, first I would say 45 minutes to an hour, I was playing well. I thought I played well. Carreno Busta is a player in form. He loves playing on clay. I think I played quite well.

After that, obviously, I cannot allow myself any more, if I want to go far in this tournament, to have this many mistakes in such a short period of time, losing four, five games in a row.

Now the players and the matches are going to get tougher. I'll try to rectify that.

Q. (Question regarding playing on clay.)
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I think the clay just does this to you. It's very important to kind of always be active with your feet, with your wrist action, hitting the ball. Once you start pushing the ball, it doesn't go. You start making mistakes. You get flat-footed. You're not getting too many easy points to get that confidence back.

Even if you have a good serve, you play someone that returns the ball well, he makes you play extra shots. All of a sudden you don't feel comfortable on the court. This is what clay does to you.

I had this kind of feeling many, many times in my career. I'm just glad that I overcome this because I haven't been playing my best tennis this season, obviously.

These two tough wins, you know, they're going to definitely serve me well from a confidence standpoint.

Q. Small details, but coming back from 15-40, close to defeat, that gives you a boost as well.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, of course, I mean, knowing that I saved couple of breakpoints. Again, I knew before that I should have closed the match out, but I didn't. In the end, 5-4, obviously I felt kind of more free to go for my shots.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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