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July 7, 2021

Karen Khachanov

Wimbledon, London, UK

Press Conference

D. SHAPOVALOV/K. Khachanov

6-4, 3-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What do you think made the difference in this match today? It was obviously very tight. What do you think was the difference maker in the end?

KAREN KHACHANOV: I mean, in these kind of matches where obviously it's five-setter, I mean, you can see it as both guys have obviously chances, otherwise you wouldn't make it to the five sets.

I mean, the difference sometimes is mental, sometimes is the game. I didn't really analyze it yet because straight after the match I came here. I think he went for it more. He's a kind of player like I was expecting before, like I am as well. He went first for the shots. He served much better than me especially in those moments.

I think during the whole match, the only thing that I was today missing a little bit better is the serve. He serves better, went for the shots more. He got the win. It's not like really -- you know, I missed some couple of shots, of course, but I think it's a part of the game. He did it better today, so for me was not enough to stay and to basically pull it off.

Q. Were you surprised how much he was going for his shots even in the big moments?

KAREN KHACHANOV: I mean, surprised I am or not, tough to say right now. But I think it's his type of game. He's like this. He makes also a lot of unforced errors, but that's why I think he's a tough player to play with because, especially on grass, when he pulls the trigger, he can make it. Sometimes you don't expect where to run. He's a ball-striker.

You know, I'm not surprised he play like that basically.

Q. There was an instance end of the first set regarding your cap. I presume it was to do with the all white dress code. Can you clarify what was said? Is that the same cap you've been using throughout the tournament?

KAREN KHACHANOV: I think there was a little bit of black color inside the hat. I don't know if you can really see it from inside. But the rules are the rules, so the referee asked me to change it. Basically I changed it, so that's it. Pretty simple.

Q. Was there some fatigue in the fourth and fifth sets after the long match against Sebastian Korda?

KAREN KHACHANOV: I would not say so. I'm physically ready. I feel fit. Even though I played, yeah, okay, five sets, we played almost four hours, but I had one day off. No, I felt fresh.

I think in the fourth set I should step in a little more to try to defend more. I think I gave him a chance to go for the shots. He broke me. Then kind of the dynamics changed. He stepped up. He started to be again pumped. He kind of turned around the situation to go into the fifth set. I think nothing has to do with the fatigue.

Q. Do you think Denis can trouble Novak with that kind of tennis?

KAREN KHACHANOV: I think they played also quite a few matches. He never beat him. I think they never played on grass, so it will be a first meeting on grass.

Obviously depends how he will serve, how Novak returns. I think Novak returns a little bit better than me (smiling). I would like to watch this match to see how Novak would play against Denis and how Denis will play against Novak. It will be an interesting match.

Yeah, I wish both of them good luck.

Q. Looking ahead to the Olympics, you and Daniil and Andrey, you look quite a good team, at least at the ATP Cup in February. Do you think it's going to be a similar kind of experience, although now you're playing for yourself individually, although you're part of the same team?

KAREN KHACHANOV: You know, it's always nice to be part of Russian team. We are one of the best friends. We rised up together from young age. Obviously when we come up together in a team environment, let's say, like when we play for the country, it's always super nice. We are always playing different games, cards, share different moments.

But Olympics I would say it will be the first one, for all of us, different experience this year I think. Obviously it's still single event. We will play doubles with Andrey, as well. But it's a single competition, so I would say it will be a different atmosphere, different vibes. I would like to live through that. Let's see how is it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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