home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


January 19, 2018

Grigor Dimitrov

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Are you happy you apparently recovered well enough from the bagel you took from McDonald?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: 'Bagel', that sounds cool (smiling).

Yeah, I mean, I recovered well. Obviously today was another tough test for me. I just had to find a way again, simple as that. At least the game was a little bit better than the previous match.

Yeah, I just played out there today. It was warm. The conditions really suited me. I was happy that everything went my way.

Q. It suited you or didn't suited you?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I enjoy it a lot.

Q. After London, was it hard to get back into a good training block and working hard?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: I don't think was that hard. It was such a short window of having to rest. I think that was more important to me, just kind of rest. Not physically, it was mainly just mentally, making sure that when I come back in the off-season I'm going to be ready to start pushing again. It all comes down to that.

I think I managed well for the time that I had. As I said, was pretty short. I kind of felt I found my way around. The practice court is pretty fast. Even though like the first two or three days was hard to kind of push, push through. As I said, it was more mental preparation for me.

I think after the first week, everything started to come in together. The fitness was getting back up. I mean, I actually didn't stop for that long. I stopped for about five days.

Q. Where did you do your off-season?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: I was in Monaco. I was home in Monaco for about two and a half weeks. The final days we went to Miami for a little bit just to feel the heat again. We were back here next thing you know.

Q. When you say five days, that means five days with no racquets at all?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Yeah, five complete days off. It was also strange because the way I finished, I felt pretty good in terms of physicality again. It was the mental toughness to keep pushing through the points, to fight every time. I think that was the toughest part obviously.

Q. When you say you had five days off, it means you don't even talk to your coach?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: It was funny because as soon as we finished, we all went to dinner, the team, all that. Everybody took their way. Let's not talk for a little bit.

I think it's important. I think it's healthy. But anyway, I think two or three days later, we were back on the phone, trying to organize a schedule.

We're like, Wow, we just finished. We have to start over again. Get used to it if you want to be where you're at right now. We need to be doing this year in and year out.

That's what it is, simple as that. Those days off were, I think, important to reflect, see what are our goals, see where we can improve.

Q. How do you manage a performance in the heat of the day, the play today?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Again, I love being out in the heat. That doesn't scare me at all. Back in Bulgaria when I was a kid growing up, the summers were pretty hot and dry. I felt like almost home today. The conditions were great.

I feel I can manage my rhythm a little bit better, the way I'm playing, I think throughout all the years, the experience, being out here before on hot days, being in Australia overall.

Yeah, I think my mentality is very different right now than, I mean, four, five years ago. I thought I know how to manage my body a little bit more, my shots, the way I'm on the changeovers and everything. I think all that comes into play.

Q. Do you think there's an argument there for players that can't cope in the heat, that would prefer the roof to be closed?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Honestly, I can only speak for myself on that. I'm happy either way. Let's say we have the luxury here to cover the roof, I mean, to put the top on. Okay, if he wants, I'm happy to do it. I don't judge that at all.

Q. When you played in London, there were a bunch of Bulgarian journalists waiting every night. Do you like to have all them around, or here in Australia, I don't know if there are any? It doesn't make any difference or you like to feel a bit at home?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: First of all, I appreciate you guys. Really, it's pleasure for me. It's so nice when you get the good questions.

All jokes aside, I appreciate each one of you in a very special way. Unfortunately, I left home early. I'm used to kind of being away. Of course, I appreciate when they're around, too. I speak my own language, which I basically talk to three, four people, and that's my family.

But yeah, I mean, I'm comfortable either way. I always feel the support to play coming out in any of those courts. Here, to see those big Bulgarian flags, that's truly an honor for me also. To be in Australia, playing on Rod Laver Arena, having that magical support, I would like to say. I mean, sometimes in a tough moments, you hear those Bulgarian voices. It comes in to you and goes back deep down to my roots. I think we all pride ourselves on being strong people.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about the serving today. Lots of double-faults.
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Plenty today, plenty.

Q. Was it the position of the sun or...
GRIGOR DIMITROV: You know, I'm not going to give any excuses right now. It was just not a good day for me serving-wise. I tried to change the way I was tossing the ball or serving throughout the whole match, but just didn't work. Just didn't work.

I have to accept it and move on. 15, 16 double-faults, that's absolutely unacceptable. So, yeah, hopefully I serve better next round.

Q. About your mental composure, if you're not playing to the level you want to be playing, have you been working a lot on keeping that calm and poise?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: I think it's very important. Again, when you don't feel well during the match, you need to find other courses to take out from them. I mean, I feel like I'm hitting the ball well. The problem is I'm just not finding the right spots of the court right now. Simple as that.

Even in the previous days, even when I was getting in the practice court, I was not finding those angles that I wanted to or those shots that I really know I can hurt my players with. Well, when that fails you, you kind of go on to the next one.

Serve, for example, failed me, too. What are the other options? The one thing I'm very happy with is I feel I have a big arsenal of tools to kind of deal with any circumstances out there. That gives me a bit of an advantage.

Again, I think the mental game, especially on days like today, it comes more in play than the game itself sometimes.

Q. Do you feel like you're working into the tournament, towards getting all those tools working for you?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Well, you don't win slams in the first week. I mean, simple as that. You need to go through those matches. That's the case right now, simple as that.

How I win right now, I love it. I mean, on days that you don't feel the best, those are the matches that count a lot... The bigger upside is it can only get better from now. Hopefully the next match I can be even better. I felt even from the first match to the second, even today, like certain things were working a little bit better, I'm adjusting more.

Yeah, I love competing on such a great court. Third match in a row I'm playing there. I don't know what to say on that.

Q. Next match will be either Tsonga or Kyrgios. Does it excite you more to play the local hero who will have all the crowd behind him, or it's better maybe to play Tsonga?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: Honestly, either/or, it's fine. I've done it many times before. I've played against the local, so to speak, all that. That's part of the game.

I mean, whoever it is, I'm very excited to just play, to go out there and compete. I appreciate my wins now. To get to play another day, I mean, this itself should get you already in a different mindset coming into whoever you got to play.

Q. Would you say your match versus Nadal last year was, if not the best match, one of the best?
GRIGOR DIMITROV: It's for sure one of the best matches I ever played, absolutely.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297