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November 19, 2019

Alex De Minaur

Lleyton Hewitt

Nick Kyrgios

John Peers

Jordan Thompson

Paris, France


KYRGIOS/Gonzalez 6-4, 6-4

de MINAUR/Galan 6-4, 6-3

PEERS-THOMPSON/Cabal-Farah 6-3, 3-6, 7-6

Q. It couldn't have gone any better today, could it?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No, it went pretty well. Obviously both the singles boys had a fair bit of pressure and expectation on them going out there, knowing that the Colombians were going to play better than their rankings, for sure, in their singles matches and also knowing we had to face the No. 1 doubles pair in the world in the doubles.

So I thought our singles boys got us off to a great start. Nick obviously played extremely well, served solid the whole match. And I thought Galan, to his credit, played a great match against Alex, and Alex had to play some of his best tennis. So I was pretty proud of how he could win pretty convincingly in a high-quality match.

And in the doubles, yeah, it's always going to be tough, it's always going to come down to a few points. I felt the momentum changed a couple of times throughout the doubles. In the end we were a bit lucky to get over the line but we'll certainly take it.

Q. Just a question for Nick. How does it feel to be back in the team? It seems like you're all having a lot of fun on court at the moment.
NICK KYRGIOS: Yeah, I love playing Davis Cup with these guys. We've had some great memories. We've had some tough memories together, we've had some really good ones. But ultimately, this is one of my favorite weeks of the year. I love playing, I love team sports. So coming together with some of these guys is a lot of fun.

To come first match of the day and play, obviously I haven't played a match in a couple of months, a month and a half. There was a lot of pressure, I was feeling it. I'm just happy I got out there and got the 1-Love lead for Demon to go out there. Obviously we all know how well he's been playing. We've got some of the best doubles guys in the world, too.

I love the camaraderie. I love the chemistry. We all genuinely enjoy each other's company. It's genuine. You see a lot of these other guys, I think they're not as comfortable around some of their teammates, but we all love each other, we go to dinners, we're brothers.

I love being back in the team.

Q. For all of you, it is a new event, a new experience, for us, too. After two days, we have some impressions and feelings. I would like to know yours. Which are the pros and which are the cons. Even if everyone understands that it will be easier to improve the more we go on. It's the first event, so probably a second would be even better.
LLEYTON HEWITT: It's probably a bit early to say, to be honest. For us, I don't really want to get into it. We're here, we're ready to play. I've said what I think of the changes. And now we're here to play and compete and win.

So I think probably at the end of it is probably the time to go through things and see where it stands. But you know, we're enjoying our time here. As Nick said, we've really enjoyed the preparation as a team, coming together and doing that.

For us, we take a lot of pride in playing for our country. And this is what the opportunity this week brings for us. And yeah, I know at the end of the week, no matter what happens, I will be really proud of all these guys.

Q. Nick, you mentioned pressure and with the format being best of three and the way the tie is played. Is it a different kind of pressure and if it is, can you try and describe how different it is for you?
NICK KYRGIOS: The format, whether it was best-of-five or best-of-three, I just think Davis Cup brings a different type of pressure. I know me personally, I don't really get that nervous in many matches during the year. Just being back out there today, I could just feel it. Straight off the bat I knew I was playing for a lot more than myself. Obviously people always say that, but it's different. You can just feel the tension.

I think it's just how special this event is. And I just want to -- I don't want to let anyone down as well. I want to play my best tennis for these group of guys, and I do think we can win it if the stars align. I want to do my best.

Q. Not everybody has been happy with the format of the Davis Cup. The other teams are playing in a neutral venue. So your thoughts on like the atmosphere, how it was being in a neutral venue?
LLEYTON HEWITT: The atmosphere wasn't great. Yeah, it was, I don't even know how much, a quarter or half-full stands. That's the big problem, though, about playing in a neutral venue.

We're playing on a pretty small court out there as well. But for us, we've spoken about that. We're ready to take on whatever it brings us.

For us, we have a small group of Australian fans. We have our friends and families of these guys around supporting them and we've got each other. We're still playing for Australia. So, in terms of that, we're still going to go and do everything we can to win.

Alex, you go.

ALEX de MINAUR: As Lleyton said, I'm pretty sure we all think the same. We've talked about it. And at the moment, the only thing we're all thinking about is our next match against Belgium.

Q. Alex, you were cruising in that match and then sort of tightened up at towards the end. Your thoughts at that stage in getting through eventually in straight sets. And also, John and Jordan, coming back from match-point down in the doubles, your comments on their doubles match tonight as well. But Alex first.
ALEX de MINAUR: Yeah. Well, I think I did a very good job to sort of get that lead in the second set. And then, look, I had my chances. I had a match-point on his serve early and it didn't go my way, and then he sort of played a good game. But I just had to make sure to just sort of get relaxed. I knew that I still had another service game in front of me. So, you know, just do everything I could in that return game and I was able to get the break.

So very happy to be able to put a point up for Australia and very happy with today.

Q. Lleyton, it is 1:00 a.m. Spain is still out there playing, it could end up potentially being over by half past 2:00. Is that a problem that you see with the 6:00 start trying to fit in three matches that could all go two hours each, finishing at 3:00, 4:00 in the morning? Going forward, do you see that as an accumulation of fatigue that could affect the team?
LLEYTON HEWITT: No doubt it's a problem. It throws your sleeping pattern, eating, the guys have to get treatment after these matches, and then a lot of the times you've got to bounce back the next day as well. So it's just another thing we're dealing with this week. It's late enough for us, but let alone those guys that are still going at the moment.

I don't know if they have to play tomorrow, but we've got to focus on the 6:00 match tomorrow night as well. These boys should be home in bed.

Q. I've heard from different players on the court speed. What is your sense? You're playing at altitude in Madrid, is the court slow, quick? How do you rate it?
JORDAN THOMPSON: I think we're at altitude so the ball goes through the air a little bit quicker, but I actually think the court surface is a bit slower, the balls are getting a bit fluffy, it's getting a bit heavier. The practice courts are a bit different as well.

So all the courts are pretty different. It's warmer on the practice courts and on the center court when we hit it, it was pretty cold. So they're all factors that are going to change the pace of the game.

Q. About the time, do you think there could be a solution to play in ten days instead of just one week so that they don't play in the morning at 11:00 when nobody is there because everybody has to work? Do you think that could be a solution?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I haven't thought about that. As I said, we're just focusing on this week and what we've got to do. At the end of the week, I'm sure they will look, as you said, at the pros and cons of this week and how it's panned out. But right now, we're not worried too much about ten days.

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