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January 25, 2020

Andrey Rublev

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

A. RUBLEV/D. Goffin

2-6, 7-6, 6-4, 7-6

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. 15th match win in a row. Do you remember how to lose or it's just a habit?
ANDREY RUBLEV: To be honest, I was not even thinking about it, how many matches I win, how many matches I lose. It's more in the media, they start say, like, you win 10 matches. Then you start to think, Wow, I won 10 matches.

In my head, I was not even thinking how many matches I won. Of course, it's amazing that I win that many matches in a row. But as I said before, tennis is this kind of sport that every week is only going to be one winner. Most of the times you're going to lose every week.

Even here, there is all the top players here. Out of all top players, there's going to be one winner. Even top players is going to lose this week. This is normal.

Q. You played so much tennis to start the year. Does that mean you have to change the way you prepare for each game now? Bigger focus on recovery?
ANDREY RUBLEV: Yeah, of course. Now we're only focus to recover as fast as I can for the next matches. Now it's more physical than mental. These kind of events like Grand Slams, you know how is tough to play best-of-five sets.

So here all the players, as soon as they finish match, the only thing they're looking as much as they can, as fast as they can to recover, to be ready for the next match.

Of course, I'm trying to do ice bath, I'm trying to stretch a lot, I'm trying to do treatments, I'm trying not to really spend energy doing some things. I try to be more calm. Yeah, I'm just trying to recover as much as I can.

Q. Your thoughts on the match? What made the difference? It was very close.
ANDREY RUBLEV: I mean, in the beginning he was returning really, really good. I mean, he was attacking a lot with my second serve.

I was serving, I would say especially first and a half sets, I was serving, I mean, compare other matches in other tournaments, not that good. But anyway, he was returning so good.

I was returning really bad today, especially in the beginning. That was main difference between me and him because he was putting straight pressure. He was taking really straightaway and he was attacking.

On his serve he was feeling more free because most of the times I was giving so many points by free. Basically that was first two sets was like this.

Then I say to myself, Okay, if the day is like this, this is what I have today, this is how he is today, looks like he's much better than me today.

The only thing, I can't accept this, don't show emotions, try to keep fighting, try to be positive just to see if in important moment somehow I will get lucky and have one breakpoint or something like that.

In the end, that was it. He was serving for the second set. He did one mistake. Then I play one good rally. Like this, like that. Hope is break back.

Then is already different story. I'm more pumped. I think he's a little more disappointed he didn't finish when he had really good chance to finish.

Then on the tiebreaker, I play well. Is one set all. In the end, then I start to feel better, I start to play better. Then the game was so close for both of us. In the end, I was a little bit more lucky.

Q. What did you think you did better than him in the third and fourth sets? Was it the serve?
ANDREY RUBLEV: I start to serve better, yes. I think it was not about serve or game. Both of us were showing the same level. I mean, I won two sets on a tiebreak. Could be completely different story. So it was completely the same level of game. I think people enjoy it.

I was just little bit more lucky in the end.

Q. In the two tiebreakers, you started 5-0 and 6-0. Must have been something...
ANDREY RUBLEV: I mean, first of all, when it was something like 2-0, 3-0, David helps me a little bit because he tried to play aggressive and he miss. He help me. That's why maybe, I don't know.

But tiebreaks, one, two points can change everything. In the end looks like 6-0, but he almost come back. Was 6-4, and was tight point. The same first set was 5-0, then 5-3. Looks like he almost come back. In the end, two, three points, everything change.

Like we see yesterday Millman-Federer, looks like Millman should win, but in the end, one, two points, Federer won.

Tiebreak is like one or two points change everything.

Q. Tennis is a massive sport in Australia. How is it going back home? Three of you in the top 20, all alive in this Grand Slam. How big is it back home?
ANDREY RUBLEV: In the past when was Marat Safin and Yevgeny Kafelnikov, was really big. Tennis was really huge in Russia. That was really amazing. When they finish, tennis became not that famous anymore. People was not really following tennis in Russia.

Now with Daniil, the results he did last year, especially with Karen, when he also won the Masters, most likely because of Daniil, he won Masters, was in final of Grand Slam, which was first time since, I don't know, old generation. So in the end now, because of that we have much more attention. That's really amazing.

I hope we will improve, we will play better and better, and maybe one day we can bring our sport at Russia the same level that it was when Marat and Kafelnikov was playing.

Q. You won a lot of matches start the year. Now you're in the second week of a Grand Slam. What is your confidence level at right now?
ANDREY RUBLEV: No, the confidence is -- everything is great with the confidence. As I said, sometimes it's not about confidence. When you feel the ball well, okay, it's amazing. But you cannot control this.

Maybe one day you play really good, then second day you're not playing that good. Then is more about become about mental.

For example, especially second round, I was serving unbelievable. This match I was not serving the same. You cannot control this. I would like to serve always amazing. You cannot control this.

Then it's more about mental, how you accept this, how you still be positive instead of be negative. In the end, tennis is more mental. It's really mental. Mental is the main important thing in tennis.

Q. Next round Sascha or Verdasco. What can you say?
ANDREY RUBLEV: I know both of them really well. Especially Sascha, we grow up together, play a lot of juniors. We play already couple times ATP level.

I mean, we'll see. It's tough. I play also with Fernando. Couple of times he beat me; couple of times I beat him.

Both are going to be really tough. I don't know what to say. Both of them can play really good level. Sascha won so many tournaments. I think he was the highest, 3 in the world or something like that. He was 3 in the world, won so many ATP titles. He won final eight. It's going to be tough but interesting.

Q. Are you more comfortable with the game of Sascha than Verdasco?
ANDREY RUBLEV: I don't know, to be honest. I don't know. It's tough to say something because both of them have completely different game.

Fernando is left-hand guy. Sascha is right-hand. Both of them are different. Both of them are not easy to play.

If you tell me to pick one, it's not easy. I don't know. Seriously it's not easy.

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