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January 8, 2020

Guido Pella

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

G. PELLA/M. Cilic

7-6, 6-3

Team Argentina - 1

Team Croatia - 0

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. The other day you were telling me how you couldn't believe there were that many Argentines in Sydney, and tonight I'd say they were even louder. How special of an atmosphere was that?
GUIDO PELLA: Well, like I said the first day, was unbelievable feeling. It's like we are playing at home.

So it's amazing to step into the court and feel that, because we not only play for our country, it's like we play for everyone. This is a very nice feeling.

Q. Does that motivate you even more, especially knowing what's at stake tonight in this tie?
GUIDO PELLA: It's tough to say, because when you step into the court and there are a lot of people watching you, you feel a little bit of pressure, more than maybe in the regular tournaments.

But I think tonight I felt very good, much more -- I felt better than maybe the previous days. So I think I play very good, very solid from the baseline, and I think I did a very good job to get the win.

I was really happy, because I was finding my game, especially my service game, during the match. When the match was over, I felt very happy.

Q. Obviously we touched on the atmosphere and how huge it was. It was also big for Marin. But what do you think allowed you to win the match tonight?
GUIDO PELLA: Like I said, I think I played very solid from the baseline. My service game was improving a lot after the first set.

So I started to feel much confident with my game, with my whole game. I think in the end I was playing my best tennis with great shots, very good from the baseline. I also play good volleys, so I think overall I did a very good match.

Q. How much confidence does a tournament like this at the beginning of the year give you for what's coming up in a couple weeks' time at the Australian and then looking ahead to 2020?
GUIDO PELLA: Every tournament is very important for a player, but I think this tournament especially is very tough to say, because I lost two days ago and it was very tough to recover, because I was winning that match very easily the first set. So after that I lost the match, so it was very tough for me to recover. But then I won today, so it's like maybe a roller coaster of feelings.

But tonight I can say to you that my game was very, very good. Because of that, now I'm feeling much confident to keep playing like this and even better the next game if we qualify tonight.

Q. When you flew over to Australia, did you expect to have amazing crowds and amazing atmosphere like this?
GUIDO PELLA: No (smiling). I never expect that at all. I think it was a huge surprise not only for me, for the entire team, because it was not only here at the venue. It was on the streets. There are a lot of Argentinians living here, having vacation here.

So it's very nice to chat with them, because we are very, very far from home right now. So it's very nice to see Argentinians.

Q. Have any Argentinians come up to you on the street to wish you luck or anything like that?
GUIDO PELLA: Yes, of course. We took a lot of selfies the other day. It was very good, because like I said, we are very far from home. And to find a lot of Argentinians who are here, who are living, who are on vacation in Australia is very nice.

And also because I love this country, I like to come here a lot, and it's very special when I come here because I like to play.

Q. And now I'm sure you're going to head back out to the team zone to watch Diego. Are you almost going to be more nervous watching than you are playing because he could clinch the tie and help you advance?
GUIDO PELLA: Yeah, of course. It's much difficult to watch a game from the outside. I can tell you that.

Of course, because if Diego wins -- he's now 3-0 up. If he wins, we will qualify. Two days ago, if you ask me, I would say it was very, very tough to qualify because we lost 3-0 against Austria, and we have to win against Croatia, that they have amazing players.

Right now it's looking very good. Of course there are a lot of games to win, but it's looking good so far.

Q. When you're in the team zone with your teammates -- when you're on the court, of course you're playing. It's difficult to sort of take in everything around you. But when you go down there, are you going to take a look around to see all the surroundings and all of the Argentine fans, the Croatian fans and everything?
GUIDO PELLA: Yeah, yeah, of course. And I also, when I was playing, I tried to enjoy. Of course it's very tough because you're playing and you have to be focused the entire match, but like I said earlier, it was one of the most unbelievable feelings, because it was a very nice surprise to see all of these Argentinians here.

So I go now to see Diego. I will try to support him the best way I can, and I hope him to get the win and of course to qualify.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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