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August 18, 2019

Daniil Medvedev

Cincinnati, Ohio


7-6, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Congratulations. Were you too tired to go for a bigger celebration?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Thank you very much. Yeah, that's exactly what I said in all the interviews. If you would have asked me before the tournament how would I celebrate, I'd probably say, Yeah, I'm going to fall on the court, I'm gonna start screaming and jumping and then raising my hands up.

I was so exhausted during all the match, to be honest. And especially 5-3, I started cramping everywhere. Of course I tried to not show it. This last game, 15-40, I cramp everywhere. I say, Okay, if it's 5-All, what do I do?

And I make four amazing serves. And when I make the last one, I'm like, Wow, it's finished. And I had no, zero force inside of me to do anything. It is how it is (smiling).

Q. In addition to serving big all week, you had a really nice percentage of breaking. Anything different you did this week playing defense?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: No. Actually, I suppose myself as a very good returner all the time. Actually it's my serve that's not usually my biggest weapon, and that's been working amazing these three weeks, all these tournaments.

That's a great step ahead. I was working a lot. I would say mostly, not before American season but in the preseason, that starts working better and better. Yeah, as I say, I think the return, I was always returning good, and the service this week is working the best in my life.

Q. You just said you were almost cramping...
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: I'm cramping right now (smiling) a little bit.

Q. I'm going to ask very quick. You smashed the racquet. You looked quite upset. Then you managed to make great second-serve winner. Could you talk about the mindset? How did you decide to go for it?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, as I say, I started cramping at 5-4 from the beginning, which I think I made ace at Love-30, so I was, like, Okay I need to stay in there. And then I lose the point that I should have won probably, tough point, and I just get frustrated.

And I think it was the first racquet I throw in three weeks, because I was just getting frustrated that I can, well, basically lose the title, start cramping, and nobody knows how it goes.

So I have this second serve and I'm, like, Okay. In Russia we say "who doesn't risk, doesn't drink Champagne." So I'm drinking Champagne tonight. (Laughter.)

Q. Can you just sum up these three weeks, which have been incredible? Looking back now, you finish with a trophy at one of them finally. What do you think about what you have been able to accomplish in these three weeks?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, I have to say even if I wouldn't have finished with the trophy, they were amazing and the best in my life. But of course I think with the trophy is better. Especially if I would have lost three finals in a row, I would have not doubted myself but, like, started asking myself how is it possible, three finals, lost all of them? What should I do differently in the final?

And finally I don't have to ask myself these questions because, well, I won the final. Yeah, it's been the best weeks in my life. I mean, as I say, mentality was the best in my life. My serve was the best in my life. My tennis was really consistent. I didn't have one bad match. I'm just extremely happy. And hopefully I can continue this way well through all my career but hopefully at least next few weeks (smiling).

Q. Interesting strategy after a long tournament, three-set match playing multiple 20-plus-shot rallies and 30-shot-plus rallies if you were low on reserves. Can you give us an insight into your thinking there?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, I mean, first of all I was a bit stressed, because, well, it's a final of a Masters, so every time I tried to go for a bigger shot I was feeling inside of me that kind of not secure in them.

And against David, also, he's running so good, so I was sometimes doubting myself. Do I go with the bigger shot with the risk to miss it if he's all the time on the ball?

So all the match I was thinking tactically. I mean, the only thing I have to say that even if there was something wrong tactically, I managed to win, so I should forget about it.

Q. What's the white powder that you put on your hands? What is it for?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: It's one gel to not have sweaty hands because it's so humid in USA. And funny thing, I started using it last year in Winston-Salem, and after this my results were only going up.

So now, even when it's not humid, I put just a little bit, because when it's not humid it destroys your skin, basically. But it helps me so much because otherwise I just cannot hold the racquet. It just slips out of my hand.

Q. I talked to you in Washington after the final there, and you said you weren't sure you were ready to win a Grand Slam. After what you have done these next two weeks also, does that change your thinking at all? You're going to be one of the most talked-about players.
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: No, I'm sure I can win a Masters because I just did it, but winning a Grand Slam is different. At this moment I haven't been in the quarterfinal yet. So when somebody asked me in Montreal, I think, they asked actually about Montreal and US Open, I said, Well, in Montreal I'd be satisfied with the quarterfinal. Did better. In US Open, I will be satisfied, doesn't mean happy, with a quarterfinal. Of course depending on the draw and everything.

So as I say, to reach my first quarterfinal will be good, and I take it match by match. If I will be in quarterfinal, I will try to do my best to win everything, but at this moment I need to take it step by step and just become better player every day.

Q. Now you're top 5.
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, that's nice. I mean, I think I saw in the semis, I was looking at the live ranking, there is an application, and I was, like, Will I become 5 if I win the tournament? No, don't think about it.

That's also, I mean, that's a huge achievement which I couldn't probably believe three weeks ago, because I just entered the top 10. When somebody was asking me, I was saying, Well, it's going to be good if I manage to stay there for some time, hopefully for long time. Now I'm top 5. Huge champions, like Zverev and Nishikori. That's huge.

Q. Do you look at the live rankings a lot?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Sometimes. I don't know what is a lot. I don't check them every two minutes, but sometimes when I get into semis or finals, I'm starting looking, okay, where I am and what I can do.

But it never puts pressure on me. As you see here, if I didn't win today I would be No. 7, now I'm No. 5, but I managed to win.

Q. You seem like you surprised yourself quite a bit over the last couple of weeks. What has been the most surprising thing?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: As I say, probably the most surprising thing for me is the way I have been serving, because my serve can be up and down. And also, as you see, I'm not able to hit 140-mile-per-hour serves, I would say kind of like Novak, because he can be a great server when he's on fire and he's not serving more than 120 and it's so tough to return.

So I'm just happy that I managed to have something these three weeks that almost nobody, because, well, there was one match, could easily return my serve.

Q. Is there any concern that the one week you have now until New York is not enough?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: I try not to think about it, because I have zero regrets from what I have done in these three weeks. Usually with the way we practice, with the way we are ready physically -- I mean, you could see I was ready physically for these three weeks.

We will work on a plan with my team, how to make the best plan to recover and to be ready for Monday or Tuesday, if I play Tuesday, and hopefully I am. I would say I should be. There are no reasons for me not to be ready for US Open.

Q. Nine days ago you hadn't played a Masters 1000 final. Now you have played two. How did you approach the second one after learning what you did from the first?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, as I say, I try to approach every match the same, and while I gained the experience of these big matches, because even if you approach it the same, when you come on your first Masters 1000 final, well, you are shaky, you are like a young kid there. Especially playing against Rafa who had, I don't know, 55 Grand Slam finals, 55 Masters finals -- of course I'm exaggerating, but for him it's routine to be in these finals.

And me, I was there for the first time, packed stadium. Again this experience that I could use here, being more calm when I went on the court and using this kind of experience that actually David didn't have, and maybe that's why I won.

I have always said for me experience of playing, experience of everything in life is really important, so it's just a matter of this.

Q. How have you enjoyed your time here in Cincinnati both on and off the court this week?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Well, off the court it's tough because I was living in West Chester, and also, I came Monday. Did I come Monday? I came Sunday night, so basically Monday morning. And I had to play Tuesday.

So all I was doing this week was practice, cold bath, physio, sleep. Match, cold bath, physio, eat, sleep. Even if we would be staying in Manhattan, I wouldn't go out to the restaurant one time. But on the court, this place will be special for all my career no matter what I achieve, because that's a first Masters 1000 win for me. And I like the tournament a lot, the facilities and everything.

Q. Going back to serves and strategy, last night it was possibly in the moment that you decided to really go for the big second serves. Today, before you started cramping, you were still going for big second serves a lot of the time. How much of that was preplanned?
DANIIL MEDVEDEV: First of all, well, I played David one month and a half ago in Wimbledon, and that was the key there. Like against Djokovic, at one moment he started destroying my second serves, so I went for the bigger one and it was working better.

So already before the match I was thinking maybe I should do it. And I think I did it in the first game of the match maybe, and I mean, when you're feeling that confident, as I was these three weeks, everything you do is working.

I made, I think, my first tweener point win against Karen in my life. So as I say, everything is working. That's why I was sure about myself when I was doing it. And as you see, even 15-40 in the last game of the match, I managed to do it, also.

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