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January 3, 2020

Steve Darcis

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

S. DARCIS/A. Cozbinov

6-4, 6-7, 7-5

Team Belgium - 1

Team Moldova - 0

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Does it take an event like this, an atmosphere like this, to have a match like that where someone who hasn't been on a stage like this pushes you that far?
STEVE DARCIS: Yeah. It was a tough match. The first one of the competition is always difficult. I didn't know too much what to expect, but Alex played a great match for the first time in a big stage.

Also for me it was a long time that I didn't play on a court like this. Yeah, first match of the year, new competition is very difficult. Of course when you have the team behind you, when you have the crowd, it push you. You know you're going to fight till the end.

Q. How impressed were you with how hard he was fighting? You kept sort of gaining an advantage, and he hung in there.
STEVE DARCIS: I think this was a little bit my fault, you know, if I couldn't finish in two sets, because I was in front in the second, and then I start to go back a little bit. And he was tired so I should continue to put pressure and I couldn't do that.

Yeah, he fight, he played good, he played heavy, he tried. I was not surprised because I saw him in the practice, he was playing really good, and I knew it was going to be a tough match.

Q. And of course Thomas is out there now, but now you have to go to your other role. Usually after a three-hour match you might go for a massage, that sort of thing.
STEVE DARCIS: I would prefer to go eat, rest, and to do the physio, but, no, I'm going to go to the court next to Thomas, next to David, and, yeah, hopefully he's not going to play, like, so long and we can finish the tie after him.

But, yeah, I think today the big goal is to finish 3-Love. I think we were the favorite, but it's always difficult even if you are favorite, because when it's a team competition, everybody is fighting like hell.

Yeah, it's going to be close but we're going to try to do our best.

Q. What are your initial thoughts now that you played the first match of the ATP Cup?
STEVE DARCIS: It was really good. I think, yeah, they are doing amazing job. I know there was three cities, but we can only speak about Sydney here, but they do everything good.

I mean, the players feel good, the court is nice. The crowd was very nice. I was surprised at 10:00 in the morning. The facilities are unbelievable.

So, yeah, what can I say except thank you and well done.

Q. Did you know that the wrong national anthem was played for the Moldovan player?
STEVE DARCIS: I didn't know. I was just surprised that they were not so much into it, so, yeah, I didn't know, no.

Q. The Moldovan guy didn't say anything?
STEVE DARCIS: I believe it's bad, but, no, I didn't know that that's happen.

Q. It was a tough match against world number...

Q. Probably not the best way you wanted to start, but can you just tell me a little bit about the match and why it was so hard for you?
STEVE DARCIS: I mean, the way you want to start the year is with a win, so today it was a win. Okay, maybe not the best match, but I had many, many chances in the second, many chances in the third. I was just not aggressive enough.

But, you know, first match of the year, tough condition, very humid, big court, against opponent you know you have to win, but still it was a great player. He played a great match. He fighted from the first point to the end.

It was really tough, but at the end I have the win. We are leading 1-0, and that was the main goal.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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