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July 3, 2018

Denis Shapovalov

Wimbledon, London, England


6-3, 3-6, 7-5, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You were saying to us a few days ago that you don't mind being the underdog and not being the favorite, and even enjoy that. That's what happen today? You played your best tennis?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, definitely. Against Jeremy, I knew it was going to be a very difficult match coming into it. He's played exceptional tennis on grass this season, so, yeah, I knew it was going to be difficult.

I thought during the match I had a lot of chances that actually I didn't convert but I stayed calm and waited for the right moments.

Yeah, surely enough I got them, a big set was the third set where, you know, it kind of gave me the break in the set at the end. But I was putting a lot of pressure on all of his service games. So I think I played him really well.

Yeah, I'm very happy with my performance.

Q. How did you feel being on court 16?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, it was a little bit of a weird court with the sun and, you know, going down. At some point there was like a lane, you know, with the sunlight, and I couldn't see anything on that side.

Some of the bounces were weird, too. When he was serving short on one side it was bouncing really high, but then if he was serving a bit deeper the ball was just not bouncing at all. It was pretty tough conditions to return, but at the end of the day it goes both ways. We both struggle with it.

And other than that, yeah, I mean, I enjoy playing here at Wimbledon. I have always played unbelievable tennis here, so it's great to be back here and I'm really happy with the first-round win.

Q. You talk about imposing your leftiness on the clay. Do you go for the same thing on the grass? If so, is it any different? How do you do that on this surface here?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Definitely. I feel like being a lefty is very beneficial on the grass. Helps me, you know, on the ad side especially with the side serve coming in. Serve and volley, I feel like that's a very good tactic even for righties on the deuce side, but especially for lefties on the ad side. And obviously most of the important points are on the ad side. It definitely helps me with that.

Yeah, I mean, I have been trying to watch a lot of Roger, how he plays on the grass, how he comes in, chips, how he bothers players on the surface. I think I have definitely improved a lot on these courts from last year. Obviously I have had some tough draws but today shows that my level is there. You know, Jeremy is a very tough player, so it shows that I'm able to play at this level.

Q. You played really well, but how do you situate it with coming in here maybe losing but maybe not playing that badly and then playing very well today?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: What do you mean, from last week?

Q. Yeah, you played very well today here at Wimbledon, played a great match but maybe not playing quite as well as you'd like coming in. Do you think you stepped it up?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: No, I think I was playing pretty well, to be honest, last couple weeks. I lost a tight one against Muller. But I felt good during the match and the whole week of practice. I was really feeling it.

I lost a tough one to Zverev. You know, I had my chances in that match, as well. He won the tournament. So I'm not losing to guys that don't know how to play on this surface. I have been losing to tough players.

My confidence hasn't gone down. I felt ready heading to Wimbledon, and, yeah, this is another match against a top player. But I knew that if I could play well and take my chances that I could win.

I always believed in myself.

Q. You'll play against another Frenchman, Benoit Paire. I think you beat him in Madrid. What do you think about this next opponent?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, it's going to be another tricky match. You know, me and Benoit know each other pretty well, practiced a ton. We have played before. It's going to be a tough match. He has great hands, a big serve. It's not going to be easy, but I think if I continue my level, if I continue to play like I did, I'll definitely have a shot to win the match.

Q. There is a lot of us that thought you'd be on Court 1 or 2 or centre. When they put you in a match to be arranged, what did they tell you? Were you a little bit surprised about 16?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: No, they just told me you're on 16.

Q. Today or yesterday or something? Why would they have you...
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: It was a little bit of weird schedule. I think to be ready they were trying to put me on a show court. They saw how the matches were going. You know, they wouldn't be able to finish my match today if they waited and put me on one of the top courts. So they decided to put me on -- it was either 14 or 16, whatever finished first.

I mean, I understand the decision obviously. You know, it's better to finish the match. Obviously it would be unbelievable to play on a show court, but, you know, they tried. It's not like they just put me there because they want to. The matches were going pretty long.

Honestly, I wasn't shocked or anything. I was ready to play on any court. So, yeah.

Q. They were in touch with you a little during the day about it?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, they let me know later in the day how the matches were going and where they think I will play. But just from assumptions I would feel like that to-be-arranged match it's in case the show courts end early and they want to put another good match on it. It shows that they put some thought into trying to put me on one of the show courts, so I really appreciate that.

Obviously unfortunately it didn't work out that way. Yeah, who knows? Maybe another match I'll play on a big court.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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