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January 1, 2018

Pablo Carreno Busta

Doha, Qatar

BUSTA - GARCIA-LOPEZ/Lorenzi - Ramos-Vinolas

6-2, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You had a great season last year. You had a breakthrough season. You reached the top 10, so did you exceed your expectations and what are your thoughts for the new season? Do you have any targets on winning a Grand Slam, reaching the top 5 rankings?
PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: Yeah. It was a very, very good season, last one. For the new one, I hope to continue improving, no. I think the most important thing for is continuing improving my tennis, my confidence on my game and I work very hard this preseason and I am very excited to start the new season because I think that I can do it better than last year.

Q. Any specific target in the rankings or any particular skill sets that you worked on in the preseason?
PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: Of course I would like to continue in the top 10, no. It would be fantastic to finish the year again in the top 10 and to play the Masters Finals again. We know that is really difficult. There are a lot of players that the last season was -- were injured and now they kind of start again to play, like Murray, Djokovic, so it will be fun to start the new season.

Q. Can you tell us what you learned last year about yourself? What did it teach you? Was it a surprise for you that you did so well or did you expect that of yourself?
PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: It was a surprise, no. When I start the last season, my goal was to finish the season around top 20 and in three months, I was top 20. So we have to change our goals and the season was really, really good. I feel really comfortable on court. I feel really comfortable playing early matches. And I thought that my level was improving all the time, no.

You know, when you do a season like this, it's always difficult not to continue and to do it better. But the important thing for me is to continue improving my level, you know. We know that the last season is difficult to repeat, but we are here to do it.

Q. A lot of the focus this year or the coming year is on the -- outside the big four players because of their injuries and their age. Do you think players from around your ranking and yourself can win a Grand Slam this year and do you think you can win a Grand Slam this year?
PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: I think that is a possibility, you know. Of course if Rafa, Federer, Murray or Djokovic plays at his best level, it will be very difficult for us to win a Grand Slam. But if we continue improving -- because I think that, for example, Dimitrov or Goffin, they are playing really good and they finish the season playing really, really good. Why not also me? We can do it -- it's better if there are players that are playing his best tennis in this moment. So if the big four don't play his best tennis, we will have a chance for sure.

Q. Can you tell us if the attitude in the locker room has changed in regards to the big four? Do you feel that a lot more players think they can beat them and do you see opportunities?
PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: Yeah, of course. Everybody respect a lot to big four. But we know that they are older than us and they have more experience, but we are taking a lot of experience in the last few years so I think that we are ready to win them and to win the important tournaments.

Q. You mentioned that you have been working hard in the preseason. Any particular skill sets that you are focused on apart from your solid baseline game, you are pretty good at doubles as well. Anything that you focused on to improve your game further?
PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: I was ready myself. I think it's very important for my game to improve myself and more in this kind of surface, hard court and also grass. So if I want to continue improve my ranking, I need to work very, very hard on my serve.

And also, be very focused on be aggressive, play very aggressive. Today the tennis is very aggressive. Everybody play is very strong and it's important to eliminate the points.

THE MODERATOR: One word about the tournament here and starting the year in Doha.

PABLO CARRENO BUSTA: I will start the year here. I play last week some exhibition matches in the Mubadala World Tennis champions. It was important for me to get confidence, but I think the true moment is now. It's the time to test my new serve or my improved during the preseason. And we know that we need time because I change some things in my game, in my racket. So maybe I cannot play my best tennis in this tournament, but I will be ready for Australia.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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