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


August 29, 2019

Denis Shapovalov

New York, NY, USA

D. SHAPOVALOV/H. Laaksonen

6-4, 7-6, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Is this a level above your first match? How would you compare it?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: It's just a different match. I mean, first of all, I think against Felix I played really clean. It's tough to expect that every day. So I knew going into today, it's not going to be a 1-1 match. It's going to be a tough battle. Henri, he's a tough player.

Yeah, I mean, the conditions were tough as well. It was a tough court to play on. The sun was coming down, really windy, weird bounces on the court, so everything. I think it was pretty tough for both of us. We had a lot of shanks a lot of miss-hits.

Yeah, I just kind of tried to stay focused, kept on the gas, and I think I played really well in the big moments today. At 5-4 he felt a little bit of pressure, doubled a couple of times. I was able to make a good return or two, then played a good tiebreak. In the third set, I think I just maintained my level, and he went away a little bit.

Q. Do you have any thoughts on why you seem to do well in this tournament particularly?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: I think, first of all, when you kind of have history at a tournament you've done well at, you have that feeling every time you come back, that you're able to play well on these courts. The atmosphere, the people, the city, it all kind of helps me. I feel really comfortable whenever I come to New York.

From the time I played juniors here, winning the doubles was kind of the first step. I did pretty well at the singles. I qualified, made third round. Every year I've been back here, I've been more and more excited to come back. I fell in love with the city. I fell in love with the atmosphere.

I think I'm just really excited whenever this time of year comes around. I think that really helps me kind of bring that fire out from inside me. Obviously that's when I do play my best tennis.

Q. Do you stick to the same routine at this tournament?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, for sure. I think I try to kind of stick to the same routines year long. I've discovered what kind of works for me, what I feel good with. Obviously there's tweaks here and there depending how I'm feeling. For the most part, yeah, I mean, I'm kind of sticking to the same things.

Q. The fact that Mikhail has played these guys, been around these guys, is that an advantage for you in a way?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: I think it helps a lot. He's definitely helped me a lot, both on the court and mentally the last couple weeks. First of all, I think he's done a lot of kind of talking to me and telling me what I should be focusing on in the matches, kind of how to operate with myself. It's been really important for me.

In terms of my game, I think he understands me really well, how I'm trying to play, finish the points. I think as a coach, he's helped me a lot in the last two weeks.

For sure, I mean, he's been around these guys. He only retired a year ago. He's played these guys a lot of times. It definitely helps to kind of get a feel for how he felt when he played them. I think he scouts really well. He's done a good job so far. I'm sure it does help that he played against them and he does know them.

Q. Winston-Salem and now, do you feel it's the best level you've played all season?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Probably since Miami in terms of playing in the tournament. I feel like in practice, I've been able to play at a really high level. I've been beating top guys in practice all year long. My practices have been really good.

I think in the tournaments it hasn't been really coming out. I knew if I just stayed patient, if I work, I did a little bit kind of soul searching, whatever you want to call it, just thinking from inside me what's kind of missing.

Ever since Montreal, I've been playing with a different fire, different kind of motivation. I feel inspired again. Just lucky to be back out here.

I'm looking at tennis in a little bit of a different way, not so much as a job. I think that kind of helps me a lot.

Q. Monfils is up two sets to love. Your thoughts on facing him in the next round possibly?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, I've never played against him. I'm a big fan of his. He's been so exciting to watch from when I was super young. I've always seen him come out with crazy points, crazy hot shots. He's so athletic on the court. I think he's one of the best athletes in the world in any sport.

It's definitely going to be a very physical match. I'm expecting a long battle. He gets a lot of balls back. He's pretty tricky. He can really do everything. He can play aggressive, he can stay in the rallies, he's got a big serve.

It's going to be a tough match.

Q. 2017 you were unseeded, now you're unseeded. Do you thrive on that, especially facing someone like Monfils who is the 13 seed?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: Yeah, for sure. I mean, it sucks not to be seeded. It sucks to be in that position. I knew it could be a really tough draw going into it, not being seeded.

But in a way I try to kind of play every match the same way. On the other side, for sure, it kind of helps motivate you to try to beat a guy higher ranked than you, a guy that's seeded.

For me, I think it's just great to be back in the third round, have a chance to be back in the fourth round. I was close last year. Took Anderson to five sets. Like I said, I'm expecting a tough match from Gael. I think it's going to be a fun one. I'm going to give all I have.

Q. You were in Armstrong for Anderson last year, right?

Q. Maybe tomorrow or Saturday. How different is it for you playing in a bigger stadium rather than Court 5 today?
DENIS SHAPOVALOV: I think it's significantly different. It's a different environment, different vibe. I think the courts are different. I think today the court was so fast, it was really tricky to play for both of us.

I don't think the points were amazing today. There were a lot of shanks, a lot of miss-hits, really tough with the sun and the wind. When you're in a stadium, you kind of get rid of all of those things. It's not as windy. There's more space on the court. It's a little bit slower. I'm expecting a lot more points.

I think playing on Armstrong last year, the atmosphere was amazing. You really hear the echo of the crowd. There were so many fans coming and supporting me. Obviously I'm expecting a tough match. Hopefully it is on a big court. If it is, I think it's going to be so much fun for me to be out there.

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