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July 6, 2021

Hubert Hurkacz

Wimbledon, London, UK

Press Conference

H. HURKACZ/D. Medvedev

2-6, 7-6, 3-6, 6-3, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. It's actually not about the match, it's about your next match. Since you came into the room and said, Wow, it's the big room. Everything changes now. Centre Court against Roger Federer. Might be intimidating. How do you handle it? Maybe you talk about this with your team?

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yeah, of course you need to prepare. Obviously playing Roger on a huge, huge arena, it's something special. Probably full of crowd, people.

I mean, I enjoy it a lot. I enjoy when a lot of people are coming and enjoying the match, having fun out there. So I think that's what I love about the game.

Q. I'm just wondering, I saw you on court, everyone is talking about playing Roger Federer. Obviously the player that he is, do you feel you would need every advantage to play somebody like that? Having to come back and play today, now play him tomorrow, puts you at something of a disadvantage?

HUBERT HURKACZ: No, I think actually playing today might have helped me because I got used to the indoor conditions, the conditions on the big court, how the ball bounces there, all the crowd. I think that actually can help me in my next-round match.

Q. That's a surprising answer. I wasn't expecting that one.

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yes. Sorry then (smiling).

Q. Tell me, how different did it feel on Centre Court? How will it give you a bit of an edge over Roger? That's his second home.

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yeah, I mean, like, playing on such a big arena, obviously from the outside court the ball bounces a little bit different. I mean, just being out there, it's so special.

I mean, I'm just enjoying it a lot. I think, I mean, I need to be prepared tactically. I'll speak to my coach, C.B., and we'll be as ready as we can for tomorrow.

Q. I caught you on TV talking about how he inspired you to start playing. Is that right? How will it feel to go out there and beat up your hero?

HUBERT HURKACZ: No, I mean, obviously Roger is a special player. I mean, what he's achieved throughout his whole career, it's unbelievable. Then the way he plays is also special.

Being out there playing quarterfinals against him, it's really amazing. But obviously I'm out there to play my best and give myself best chance of winning the match.

Q. How much of a hero was he to you?

HUBERT HURKACZ: I mean, he was big inspiration for me. I mean, the success that he had, the way he played, how he plays in the important moment, it's really special.

Q. Will you be nervous playing him then?

HUBERT HURKACZ: No, no (smiling).

Q. Could you speak a bit about your journey coming into Wimbledon this year. You didn't have a great run. You seem to have turned things around magnificently. Can you speak about the journey?

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yeah, I mean, coming to Wimbledon I didn't win a match on grass in singles. I mean, I played two tournaments in Stuttgart and Halle. I spent a lot of time practicing on court. I played also doubles with Felix. We got into the finals of Halle.

Meanwhile I was, like, practicing, trying to work on my grass court game there. I think I spent a lot of time on grass just to be as ready as I can for this event.

Q. On Roger, obviously you would have grown up watching him. Did you ever think you'd have a chance to face him? You're 15 or 16 years younger than him. Did you actually think you'd get a chance to face your heroes rather than just learning from them on this sort of stage?

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yes, I think like obviously being a young person, I knew it's going to be possible. I'm so happy. I already played him once in Indian Wells where he won. I mean, I got some of the experience. Now I think I'll try my best tomorrow.

Q. Would you mind talking a little bit about the influence that Roger has. I mean, have you met him? You said you've played him once. Have you spoken to him socially, whether he has passed out any tips to you? Also, I heard on the TV, they said some people have said you're too nice to be a top sportsman. Surely that can't be true, right?

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yeah, I mean, I saw Roger, like, here a couple times, as well. In a way we spoke a bit. He usually doesn't give a lot of advices to his potential opponents in the future.

But no, I mean, he's a great guy, great person. I mean, the way he plays, like what he did for the whole sport, I think grew the sport massively over his whole career with the way he is, with the way the person he is. I mean, obviously it's special to play him.

Q. What about being too nice to be a top sportsman?

HUBERT HURKACZ: I mean, I don't think so (smiling).

Q. Have you ever done anything nasty in your life?

HUBERT HURKACZ: Yeah, for sure.

Q. Tell us.

HUBERT HURKACZ: I mean, I don't have it in the back of my mind. I mean, maybe it's not really good, though, not good right before the match (smiling).

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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