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September 8, 2017

Juan Martin Del Potro

New York, NY, USA

R. NADAL/J. Martin del Potro

4-6, 6-0, 6-3, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Such a big turnaround, first set, changed the momentum. If you can just comment on what happened.
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: Well, nothing special happens. Rafa just play even better the last three sets of the match, and I couldn't hit my backhand as good as I did in the beginning of the match.

He's a lefty player, so he couldn't find easily my left side of the game. He played so smart from the second set till the end of the match.

He was dominates every time of the match. He played well.

Q. Have you seen him -- has he ever dominated in a match like this with you before? What was your condition emotionally after this ten days?
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: No, I think it was the first time to be dominate for him, but it's the first time we play without a good backhand on my side, you know. But anyways, he played so smart the second set, the third, and the fourth.

To be honest, I'm angry to lose a chance like this, but maybe tomorrow, after tomorrow, I will be calm and see how big the tournament was for me.

Q. Did you ever get a sense that your backhand came back during this tournament? I know early on you have been a little critical how you felt about it. As you went to the semifinals, did you feel better about your backhand?
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: I feel better with my backhand, but it's not good enough to win a title like this or to win the top guys in a row. Depends of their game, too, because against Rafa, you must hit winners from both sides. I didn't tonight. He played maybe 80% of the game to my backhand, and there is an advantage for him.

Q. After you win the first set 6-4, did you feel mentally like you had control of the match? And at what point did you feel that you lost control of the match? Because after that 6-4 first set that you had, Rafa proceeded to win the next nine games.
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: I think I never had the control of the match. I just have lucky to broke his serves with the net point.

He was playing me all the time to my backhand. When you don't have that confidence to play three, four hours with a good backhand against Rafa, is just matter of time to get down your game.

But also, he improve very much his game after the second set, and his balls come too fast from both sides.

He deserve to win, for sure.

Q. On the court, Rafa Nadal said he played much more on the backhand on the first set than after, because after, he was trying to move you more. Do you think your backhand is more a mental problem than a physical one? Because you were playing unbelievable good backhands in the first set.
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: No, but -- when I say he played very smart from the second till the end of the match, because I was just standing all the time in my left side, and once he plays down the line, he won the point.

I think at the beginning of the match, he was playing all the time to my backhand, trying to see how good is my backhand at this moment.

It was good, but it wasn't good enough to play four-set, five-set match. And I couldn't make any winner in the match, which you must do a lot of winners against Rafa.

I think he has today the game to win, to beat me, and to win the tournament.

Q. In all the years that you've seen and played against Rafa, how would you describe the way he is playing now and the confidence that he seems to be playing with?
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: I think he's playing much better. He's improved his backhand, too, and he serves good.

I think -- well, he's the No. 1 of the world. He's winning many tournaments this year.

I don't know if, in the future, I can beat him again, but is just matter of time if I can get my old backhand one day or not, but I will try to change the games if I have the chance to play against him again.

Q. Last time, I asked you, your hesitation with answering this guy, to become new ATP logo?
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: If they pay me (smiling). No?

Q. You had two grueling matches before you faced Rafa. I'm just wondering, did you feel 100% of where you started the match tonight physically?
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO: Yeah, I just tired. I been exhausted after Thiem match, Roger match. I had flu during the week. So I had many problems before this match, but I was very motivate to play the semifinal in my best tournament.

I think he just play better than me. He deserve to win, and I did all my best, all my effort to survive this match, but I couldn't do well.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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