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May 17, 2018

Denis Shapovalov

Rome, Italy


7-6, 6-7, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Denis is playing a day session tomorrow, so just a few questions. Anyone?

Q. Denis, you fought a lot because you could have won that in the second set tiebreak. Where did you find this energy and mental fortitude to just forget about it and go back fighting?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah. I mean, it's just another match. Another really tough one. It was good tennis out there.

But, yeah, it was definitely tough to come back after that second set loss. You know, even though I was up a mini-break and a tiebreak. But, yeah, just tried to regroup, stay calm, and kept fighting.

I knew third set could go either way. You know, today I feel like in the third set I played maybe a little bit better. But, yeah, it really could have gone either way. But I'm happy with my fight.

Q. Do you prefer to have difficult win to prepare for tomorrow?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Definitely not (laughing). It's always better to win easy.

Q. Well, tomorrow is Rafa waiting for you.

Q. You've beaten him at a really young age. What's your mind-set coming into the match?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: There's nothing to lose. I mean, he's such a legend on any surface but especially on clay. So, you know, it's more pressure on him, for sure.

We're both playing really good tennis. It's a tough one.

You know, I've had a couple tough matches, so I'm feeling it a bit. But, you know, I'm young so hopefully tomorrow I can bounce back.

But, yeah, it's definitely going to be a tough match. But for me, it's going to be fun.

Q. Is that the kind of match you dream about, I mean playing Rafa on clay? That's as good as can be?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah. When I was growing up, it was something I dreamt of doing. Nowadays, it's more about trying to avoid him in the draws, especially on clay (smiling).

But, yeah, like I said, it's going to be a fun match for me. Nothing to lose. You know, I'm playing one of the guys I looked up to my whole life growing up. So, it's all positive for me.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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