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July 10, 2017

Gilles Muller

Wimbledon, London, England

G. MULLER/R. Nadal

6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 15-13

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How did you survive that?
GILLES MULLER: I don't know. I mean, just tried to hang in there. I thought I played pretty well through the whole match. Rafa stepped it up in the third and the fourth set. Then I just told myself, Look, I mean, I'm doing the best I can. I'm playing well. Just hang in there and you're going to get your chances.

Got a few of them. Didn't take the first ones. But still kept believing. Yeah, somehow in the end I made it.

Q. How would you describe the fifth set?
GILLES MULLER: Like I just said, I feel like we both played pretty well. After I was struggling a bit on my service games in the third and fourth set, I kind of started playing well on my serve again, and won my games more comfortably.

I felt like at the end I was there all the time on his serves. I was at Love-30, 15-30, 30-All. I felt like I was there all the time. I had a couple match points. I just felt like what I was doing was the right way, just had to be patient.

Q. Was it difficult to maintain that belief as those opportunities to end it passed by?
GILLES MULLER: It wasn't easy. But, again, I thought on those match points, I didn't do anything wrong. He served big on a couple of them. I tried to take a big return on his second serve at one match point. I miss-hit it. But I felt like I was doing the right things.

It was not easy to keep believing. But on the other hand, I didn't have any regrets. Again, I was playing well. If I would have lost that match, I mean, it obviously would have been very tough to digest. But on the other hand I felt like I was playing good, I did everything right.

Yeah, that was how I felt.

Q. Your wave at the end to the crowd almost seemed apologetic. How difficult was it in there with so many people behind Rafa, or didn't you feel that?
GILLES MULLER: Well, I mean, it's kind of what you get when you play Rafa, Roger, Andy, Novak. They're always the crowd's favorite.

I didn't feel sorry, to be honest. I didn't feel like I had to apologize. Yeah, I mean, there's obviously a lot of emotions at the end. I felt like the crowd also cheered for me at the end of the match. So it was a nice moment.

Q. Marin next for you on Wednesday. What sort of game are you expecting?
GILLES MULLER: To be honest, I haven't thought about it. But the only thing I can say, I played Marin not too long ago at the Queen's Club in the semifinals. I lost to him in three tough sets. Obviously he's playing good. He had match points to win that tournament. He's back in the quarterfinals now here again.

I guess he's playing pretty confident at the moment, feeling well. I'm not sure what the score was today. I saw the first two sets. He won quite easy. I don't know if he won in three or four sets. Looks like he's feeling good and playing well, so it's going to be a tough match, for sure.

Q. Right before you walked out on the court, Nadal jumped up and maybe hit his head on the doorway there.
GILLES MULLER: Yeah, I heard something. I looked back. He was laughing. Yeah, I don't know what he said. I think he said, Almost. I don't know if he hit his head or the racquet. I'm not sure what happened. He hit something, I don't know what it was.

Q. A different way to go on court?
GILLES MULLER: Yeah, I guess. Maybe that's why the first two sets I was winning quite easy. Maybe still a little bit feeling dizzy, I don't know (smiling).

Q. It seems like the older you get, the better you get. Can you explain that?
GILLES MULLER: I mean, it's not a particular reason. I think for me the main reason is that I've been able to play full seasons now for the last three or four years, which I wasn't able to do before because I had many injuries.

Basically, I said it many times already, but the last injury I had was probably the best thing that ever happened to me. Because I had problems with my elbow, I wasn't able to touch a racquet. I was able to work out physically, I got myself into the best shape I ever was.

Since then, since 2014 when I came back, I'm able to play full seasons without any breaks during the season. I have a lot of confidence in my body now, which I didn't do before. All this is changing a lot for me. For sure that has been the key for me in the last few years, to be that successful.

Q. What place do you give to this victory in your career?
GILLES MULLER: It's definitely one of the biggest, if not the biggest. I mean, especially what I went through, like I said, in 2013. I had a big injury. I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to come back. I mean, I played many great matches since then. This is definitely the biggest victory since then, since I came back, especially at that stage of a Grand Slam, playing one of the guys who is dominating the tennis this year again.

Yeah, definitely the biggest win, I would say.

Q. When the last ball dropped behind the baseline, you stood for a second or two. Anything you were thinking that comes to mind?
GILLES MULLER: A lot of relief, I would say. I had those match points before. I mean, the noise the crowd made every time he saved a match point was just massive. So, yeah, at that moment I think also in my head I was thinking, We have to finish this now or otherwise we're going to come back tomorrow. I knew it was going to be maybe another 10, 15 more minutes maximum.

Yeah, just a lot of relief to finally get it done.

Q. To be honest, how do you really feel after this marathon match? What do you think you'll feel tomorrow?
GILLES MULLER: I probably won't feel great tomorrow. But I'm pretty confident that I will be in good shape for Wednesday. I mean, I have a day off tomorrow. I'm going to get some treatment. I have a physio now traveling with me for the last few weeks. This is going to be a big plus for me. Tonight I'm going to have a lot of time to do a lot of treatment. Tomorrow come to the club, hit a few balls, sweating a little bit, then after treatment again. I think I'll be fine for Wednesday.

Q. You are working with Benjamin Balleret from Monaco. What kind of coach is he for you?
GILLES MULLER: We started working last year. Last year we did a couple of weeks as a tryout. He's actually a good friend of mine. We're the same age. We used to play juniors together. We actually played doubles together here in Wimbledon as juniors.

I have a coach also who is kind of my main coach, Alex Lisiecki. I've been working with him now for six or seven years. We always kind of had a second guy to travel with. So Benjamin last year, he stopped his career. Yeah, we got to talking. He's kind of looking forward to help me out a little bit. We did a few weeks last year. I liked it. He liked it. This is how we started.

He's doing more weeks this year and it's working out great.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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