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September 10, 2021

Rajeev Ram

Joe Salisbury

New York, New York, USA

Press Conference


3-6, 6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Gentlemen, if you could each, your thoughts on today's match.

JOE SALISBURY: Well, my thoughts right now is that, yeah, just pretty happy with that win. Yeah, I think we're still just a bit in shock of what we've just achieved.

But, yeah, just really happy with how we performed, everything we did out there. We didn't play a great first set. We found it tough, the conditions. It was my first time playing on Ashe. It was really tough with the sun and the shade. It was kind of one half of the court was in sun, one half in shade. We were struggling to see the ball well. Obviously they dealt with that better than we did.

Yeah, we didn't panic. Yeah, it got a little bit easier I think. We obviously got a lot better. Yeah, I think we played really well the second and third set. Yeah, just really happy with that.

RAJEEV RAM: Yeah, I don't have much more to add to that. I just feel like it kind of -- the whole match sort of symbolized sort of our outlook on how we go about these matches. We stick together. It's not always going to be pretty, it's not always going to be easy for sure, definitely not in a final. It was none of those things in the first half hour.

But I think it shows how far we've come as a team, that maybe a year and a half ago that would have been a very difficult, probably impossible one for us to win. In 10 minutes we turned it around to feeling like we were the favorites, I felt.

Just incredibly happy with the fact that we made that much progress to the point where we could not only do it but do it in a major final.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I'm going to do an incredibly obnoxious thing. I'm going to ask you about someone else who is still playing. How has that affected you, because here you're on a run to a Grand Slam final. Are you hearing from people in England who say it's great what you're doing, but tell me about Emma? How aware are you, what can you tell us about what you think and what all of your comrades think about what's been happening with yourself and this teenager?

JOE SALISBURY: To be honest, I'm not too aware. Obviously I know what's going on. I've been following her progress. It's amazing what she's been doing. So, yeah, apart from seeing a few sort of headlines, a few sort of news stories about her from back home, I haven't seen too much.

Obviously I know, I assume things would be going pretty crazy with everything that she's done. I mean, it's been amazing. I think everyone's a bit in shock.

So, yeah, hopefully she keeps going and gets the title.

Q. You guys served very well through the whole tournament. Then in today's match after the first set you didn't face breakpoint in sets 2 or 3. What was your strategy on serve through the tournament or in today's match? Did you change anything after the first set?

RAJEEV RAM: Well, I mean, we feel like that's probably our strongest asset, so we always go for it. We trust the fact that we're going to be able to hold serve and play aggressively on it. Obviously wasn't going that way in the first set at all.

I felt like we stuck with it, stuck with our guns and felt like it will eventually come. Conditions got a little bit easier, like Joe said, found the rhythm a little bit more. We didn't panic, go away from what we know we can do well, even though it wasn't going well for a while.

Q. A final is a final. Any different dimension when you're playing Jamie on the other side of the net?

JOE SALISBURY: No, I don't think so. I mean, I think before we played, everyone was just feeling like it was great that there were two Brits in the final. Obviously there was going to be a British winner whatever happened.

Yeah, if we hadn't won that, it had been them, I would be happy it was two great guys. I would have been really happy for them. Obviously be great, yeah, for British tennis to have a winner.

Yeah, to be honest, I didn't feel much different the fact that it was him across the net.

Q. I know you didn't know each other incredibly well when you started a few years ago. Especially given how difficult it is to sustain success in doubles, what has made you achieve such sustained success for a few years now? Is there one thing in particular?

RAJEEV RAM: Yeah, I think just our chemistry and the relationship that we've been able to build, not only with each other but with our whole team, the group that travels around. We enjoy it a lot.

I guess I'll speak for myself. I don't ever feel like, oh, my gosh, we got to go practice again, I got to see Joe again today. It's not an issue. I think we've done a good job of separating, to a certain extent, so we don't get to that point. I think we complement each other really well on court. It's a lot of fun.

I think when you're in a good place with those things, the tennis, if you have a certain level, which I feel like we both do, seems to come out at a consistent clip, which we've been able to do for a while and hopefully continue to do.

JOE SALISBURY: Yeah, I mean, I agree with what Raj said. Whenever I get asked that, I think the fact that we get on so well is a massive thing, on and off the court. Obviously we enjoy playing together. I think most people can see that. I think we are great sort of partners to each other. Whether things are going well or bad on court, we're there for each other, to support each other.

Yeah, I think we get on well. We enjoy spending time off the court together. Obviously you're going to be together a lot traveling, tournaments, practicing together, all that.

But, yeah, like he said, we also don't spend 24/7 together, which I think is good. It's healthy to not spend all your time together while you're at the tournaments. So I think it's just a good balance. Obviously the time that we've played together, yeah, we've improved as a team.

Q. Raj, how much longer do you think you can go?

RAJEEV RAM: It's funny, I've gotten this question quite a bit. I feel like I don't ever really put a timeline on it. I enjoy it. I feel like I'm playing pretty well. Winning stuff like this helps think that way (smiling).

As long as I keep enjoying it, feel like I can get better and better, have a good thing going, I don't see any reason why I'm going to stop.

Whether it's a year, two years, three years, I have no idea. I just kind of take it sort of one week at a time, if you will.

Q. Do you think you're better now than you were two, three years ago?

RAJEEV RAM: Absolutely.

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