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September 29, 2019

Alex De Minaur

Zhuhai, China

A. DE MINAUR/A. Mannarino

7-6, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Before you hit the winner you had lost all your first 12 break points and so what is the difference between the first half and the final one.
ALEX DE MINAUR: Well, it was a really tough match. I mean, I had a lot of chances and I felt like Adrian just played better than I did in those moments. I just told myself I had to try and take control of the point and just try to dictate as much as I could and I hit a great ball and I'm happy it ended there.

Q. It's said that Mannarino's best shot is his backhand, but today I thought his forehand gave you a lot of threat, especially in the first set, you could have easily lost in the tiebreak in the first set. So how did you manage to turn it around?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Well, coming in I always knew it was going to be a very tough match. He's one of the toughest guys to play, very tricky, and in that first set I had so many chances and I wasn't able to break him, so I just had to make sure I stayed calm and just kept on backing myself, stay positive and I was able to play some great points to turn the tiebreak around and that first set was huge.

Q. You gained a lot of popularity here this week and you received so many gifts from fans here. Overall, how much do you enjoy Zhuhai and playing here?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Oh, I love Zhuhai. It's been my first time here and I mean the way I've been getting treated is almost like I'm back at home. It's been amazing and I honest can't wait to come back.

Q. I saw you draw a rabbit on the camera in every game you won. Do you just like rabbits or do you think that the rabbit can be your lucky signal?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Well, first of all, I'm not the best drawer, because it's supposed to be a demon, you know? Obviously my nickname is Demon, so I tried to draw somewhat of like a demon emoji.

But, yeah, I need to work on that. Drawing is not my best skill, so I'll go back to my room and I'll draw a lot of demons and try to get better.

Q. How much time did you spend to pronounce Zhuhai wo ai ni?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Well, let's just say the first five or six sentences that they tried to tell me was impossible, all right? And this one I managed to say because I had to break it down and I was like, wo, and then ai, and then ni. And then I was like, all right, I think I got this.

So I went to sleep and the only thing I was saying was wo ai ni, wo ai ni, wo ai ni, so I'm happy it came out today.

Q. So what's your impression of Chinese players? You have performed so well at such a young age, so what experience do you have to share with Chinese players?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Sorry, can I get that again?

Q. What is your impression of Chinese players? You performed so well at a young age, so what experience do you have with those players?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Obviously in the juniors I've grown up with a couple Chinese players Wu Yibing, who I've played in the juniors. So, look, and I've seen both Wu Di and Zhang this week and they have an incredibly high level. Hopefully, they can start putting more of the same high level matches together in a row and then they will be able to make that next step and really start to drop in the rankings.

Q. All the stereotypes with a good athlete that they're just physically good, physically strong. But in brain maybe they're just average. But now more people feel a good athlete needs to be very intelligent and have very good emotions of the pressure, not to mention all the hard work and persistence, so which we also see in you. People say that even if they had other jobs that they would also be in the top if they love as much as the sports. Do you agree?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Yes, I feel like the head, the mind is one of the most important things out there. I train my mind as much as I do on the tennis court or as much as I do fitness. I've got a psychologist which I talk to every day and it's been a big help.

And, honestly, tennis is such a tough sport as it is, it's only you out there on court, so you've got to deal with a lot of different pressures and expectations and when things aren't going well. So to have someone like that to be on my team and be able to clear my mind and make me stronger mentally, I think it's been the biggest change for me. That's the way I've been progressing, thanks to all the work I've done with him.

Q. Some players can only play their best tennis on their home soil, but your three titles come from Australia, U.S. and China. Are you the kind of person who feels comfortable no matter where you travel and you still can perform well?
ALEX DE MINAUR: I mean, I would like to think so. Sometimes it doesn't happen, but the most important thing is to keep fighting. That's what I got to try and do every time I step out on court, I need to make sure that I'm positive and I fight until the end. And then sometimes I'll have good days, sometimes I'll have bad days, but if I keep fighting until the end I'll be able to win a lot of matches, even if they're not my best days.

Q. You already won three titles this year and can we expect more and we know you are flying to Tokyo and can we expect more?
ALEX DE MINAUR: I mean, obviously it would be amazing. I mean, I would sign anywhere to get another title, finish the year. But this was a real big goal of ours. After the U.S. Open, I had a very good week there, still felt like I could perform and had a little bit of chances and opportunities that flew away, but we made sure we came back, trained really hard to make sure to finish the year strong. That was one of my goals.

I want to keep on pushing, hopefully I can have -- I've got four more ATPs to go and I've got to push as hard as I can to keep putting myself in good positions. So I'll do everything I can to recover and on we go to Tokyo.

Q. How do you want to celebrate the win tonight?
ALEX DE MINAUR: Well, me and my team, we have been thinking and I think we're going to stop at Burger King on the way back to the hotel.


We have been seeing it every single day and we have all been eating healthy and being a good team, but I think that we all got to celebrate with a Burger King and then maybe when I get back to the hotel maybe some room service, desert or something like that.

Q. It's the first year the city host the Zhuhai Championship and you are the first champion. So would you want to come next year?
ALEX DE MINAUR: 100 percent. I mean, I enjoyed it so much this year, everyone has treated me so nice, and honestly it felt like at home. So for me it's been one of the best 250s I played. So, look, I've had an unbelievable week and this is definitely one on the calendar to come back to.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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