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August 8, 2018

Stefanos Tsitsipas

Toronto, Ontario, Canada


6-3, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How do you feel about your game today?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I felt great. I felt very confident from the beginning of the match. I felt like I was stronger than him today. I was more experienced than him on the court. So I feel like, you know, in all aspects in my game, I was just slightly much better.

And confidence played an important role in my game today. I felt my serve was working really well. And I managed to win lots of easy points on my serve and put pressure on him, knowing that he cannot find solutions while I was serving on my service games.

So, yeah, it was a fantastic match from the beginning till the end. And I'm really looking forward on my next match because I want to prove that I can play even better than that.

Q. You say you felt more experienced than him but he's quite a few years older than you.
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: That's true. I felt more experienced because I had, like, more matches than him last week on hard court. He came straight from clay, so for him it was tough to adjust.

I knew that it's going to be tough for him to adjust on the new surface. So I took advantage of that and executed my game the way I had to, stayed aggressive and took the ball early.

So I'm pretty sure he didn't like that, and it worked pretty well for me today.

Q. Just to follow up on that, going into the match do you tell yourself this is a match you should win or do you still feel like a little bit of an underdog?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well, today I actually felt less stressed than any other day. I knew I'll have opportunities.

And, no, I didn't feel like you said. I felt pretty confident. I felt pretty sure with myself, pretty sure with what I was doing on the court and executing the right tactics and plans that I had with my coach that we had discussed before.

So no. Definitely I felt super today.

Q. With talk of the under 21, do you feel that players that are your age, around 19, a couple of Canadians too, are actually putting a lot more pressure on the generation just ahead of you like the Nick Kyrgios, those types, as opposed to people saying, when are they going to catch up with Federer and those guys? Do you think that you guys might actually leap over the ones that are directly ahead of you?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well, you never know. You cannot predict the future. It will be the best thing to have records like Federer and Nadal and all those, I mean, legendary players.

So at the moment I'm just concentrating getting high in the rankings. Even one spot for me is a big thing. So I'm just trying to concentrate and getting as many points as I can, staying concentrated in my work.

And I'm pretty sure I'll be facing all those NextGen players many times in the future. I have no doubt about that. I'm pretty sure again that they're going to have wins against me, and I'm going to have wins against them.

The solution to that is just to read their games and be slightly better than them. It will be very interesting to be facing all those players like Shapovalov, Aliassime, de Minaur, Zverev. It will be a very interesting competition between us in many years to come from now.

Q. Because there haven't been too many Greek players, do you feel any connection to a guy like Sampras or Philippoussis or even Kyrgios and Kokkinakis?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: What kind of connection?

Q. The Greek ancestry. Is there any connection you feel with Sampras or those guys?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I personally don't know Sampras at all. Yeah, I am pretty good friends with Kokkinakis.

Kyrgios, I don't know. We didn't stick together, you know. I mean, it just didn't happen yet. We're not that close.

But with Kokkinakis and Philippoussis, I know him pretty well. My dad had chats with him last year at the US Open. He's an interesting guy. Speaks perfect Greek, fluent in Greek.

And he had some good tips to give me last year. So as I said, he's a very interesting guy and very polite and very talkative.

Q. How much of a goal is it for you to reach a NextGen finals at the end of this year?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well, yeah, it's one of my goals. And I want to be able to be why not even number one in that NextGen final. So I can see all my achievements paying off if that happens and all of my hard work.

So for me, going in the NextGen finals as No. 1 is super important. And to do so, I need to keep on doing what I'm doing, making as many points as I can, and beating good opponents.

And I'm pretty sure I can do well at the NextGen finals. I have no doubt.

Q. Looking back at when you first started competitive tennis to now, what would you say personally is your biggest weapon? Is it a shot, a skill, or is it your mental toughness that you bring to the court?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Yeah, I would say, like you said, the last thing: mental toughness. I never let things -- I never let things go inside my mind, whether my opponent has hit a winner against me, whether he has done something crazy on the other side of the court. I'm being tough on myself when I play. I'm trying to be tough as much as I can.

I mean, whenever something -- you know, I forgive myself pretty fast if something bad happens and a bad shot or whatever. I'm just trying to move to the next point, to the next, even, shot sometimes and concentrate, be pumped, be, like, hungry for more in each point.

So this fist pumps, you know, I'm doing it pretty often to pump myself and just keep on saying to myself, keep on going. Keep on doing what you're doing.

And I would say it takes a lot of mental toughness and mental stability to be able to beat those players and perform at my best.

Q. You mentioned earlier being excited for your next match. I was just wondering if playing against Novak was maybe something that you dreamed of or envisioned growing up and what are your expectations going into match?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well, for sure, playing Novak, I practiced almost like a thousand times with him. It's going to be an interesting match.

Obviously he's a favorite. I'm pretty sure about it. Everybody is expecting him to win.

So I'll just play my game, be patient. There are going to be few opportunities in the match. I just need to use my chances as correct as possible and not hurry at all and just enjoy my time out playing in the center court, in such a beautiful center court here in Toronto.

So I'm just going to get the best out of it.

Q. Dominic was here just before you and he told us that he had been fighting a virus in the last three, four days. Did you know about that before you played him or did you feel anything?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: No. I had no idea. I had no idea.

Q. But you didn't feel anything like --
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well, I don't know. I think -- I mean, yeah, I guess he puts more tension usually in a match like this.

But it felt -- yeah, I kind of felt like he was struggling with something, but I never understood what it was. But it might have been this, as you said, yeah.

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