October 16, 2021
C. NORRIE/G. Dimitrov
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. You got off to a flyer again today. Was there any point in the match where you felt like you were thinking about the prize of a final at Indian Wells or did you stay in the moment?
CAMERON NORRIE: Yeah, not really honestly. I was just going out there and playing my game and making the rallies long. Honestly not once I was thinking about it. When I went to serve for the match, I was like, This is definitely a big service game here. I was a little bit nervous. But I came out and I served great. I think it helped with the new balls.
No, I really wasn't thinking about it too much. I just didn't really return as well as I did in the first set. I missed a fair few returns midway through that second set. I was just really in the present moment and wasn't really thinking too much. I was enjoying my tennis and playing.
Q. I was just thinking back to the origins of this great run that you've now been on for many months. Obviously things were quite tricky during the pandemic in terms of getting matches. How valuable was the whole kind of Battle of the Brits thing last summer in terms of keeping you ticking over and what you learnt?
CAMERON NORRIE: That was a lot of fun for me. That was a big thanks to Jamie and everyone involved with that. That was huge for all of us players to get those matches with a lot of pressure. None of us wanted to lose to anyone else (smiling). With everyone watching as well at the NTC. So That was perfect. Even to have Andy, Kyle, Evo, Jack, Jubby, Broads, all those players there to practice with, everyone was wanting the same thing, and to get good practices and good matches. That was a lot of fun, that event. I really enjoyed it.
It definitely showed that it helped us, especially with the US Open. Following that we all had matches under your belts, we all went out and were feeling good. I know I was anyway. I really enjoyed that one. I'm looking forward to the next event as well in December.
Q. Irrespective of what happens in Sunday's final, it's been a fantastic tournament, a fantastic year. Next year is the target you've just got to start performing at those slams to make that next step up? You haven't made a second week yet. Is it translating what you've done this year into that bigger stage across the four slams?
CAMERON NORRIE: Yeah, I'm really happy with how this week's gone for me obviously. I feel like I'm improving. I think, yeah, I'm looking forward to the match tomorrow and really looking forward to going out and enjoying it again.
Yeah, I've had some opportunities there to make the second week of a slam, but it's not gone my way. It's all been great learning for me. Hopefully with these results I can put myself in a higher seeding there, then maybe have some more chances.
But I've faced some pretty decent players this year in the third round. Rafa in Australia, Rafa at the French, then Roger at Wimbledon. I feel some tough guys out there. I'm really enjoying my tennis. Yeah, those experiences have been great for me, those big matches.
Q. You're only the fourth Brit to reach the final here. No Brit has won this title. Can you just maybe look ahead, think about that aspect, your thoughts on that? Also, Basilashvili is on a third or fourth match point over here. Your thoughts about playing him?
CAMERON NORRIE: Yeah, he's an incredibly tough player, especially when he's this confident. He hits the ball big off both sides. He moves well. He's a great athlete. Like I said, when he's confident, he can beat anyone. He's super dangerous.
It's going to be difficult, but I'm feeling good physically and looking forward to getting out there. He's looking good. He's serving well. He's being very proactive with his forehand. He's looking dangerous.
But I'm looking forward to the match.
Q. What about the fact that you're only the fourth Brit to reach the final? Is that something that could play on your mind, that a Brit has never won this title?
CAMERON NORRIE: I'm not really going to think about that too much. I think it's very special, especially looking at the other names, Greg, Tim and Andy, all British tennis icons and legends. To be added to that list is extremely special for me.
But I'm going to go out. The last two days have been the biggest matches of my career, so I'm going to go out there and it's going to be my biggest match of my career again tomorrow. Go out there and hopefully do more of the same.
There's a lot of work to be done. I'm looking forward to the occasion. Feeling all the nerves and all the pressure, it's definitely great to experience that. Looking forward to feeling that and the whole experience of the whole thing.
Q. You still have to play the most important game, but I would like to know what crosses your mind when you saw that you had already won and reached the final? Did you remember a particular moment or person that has been key for you to be where you are today?
CAMERON NORRIE: Yeah, obviously great match. Yeah, I think there's been a bunch of people that have helped me when I turned pro and even before when I turned pro when I was at college. I think both my college coaches, Devin Bowen, Dave Roditi, and then my coach Facundo Lugones, who is Argentinian. He's been a great leader, very professional, helped me along the way. It's been a great partnership.
Then also a couple people at the LTA, James Trotman who has been wonderful for myself, wonderful for Facu. Facu has used him as a little bit of a mentor. He's helped us a lot. I still do a lot of work with him when I'm back in London.
I think a lot of those guys, especially my team, my physio, Julian, who is also Argentinian, and my fitness trainer Vasek (phonetic) has been a phenomenal team around me, some great guys, so I think we've made some good decisions and I've enjoyed the process of getting better with those guys and the other guys that helped me along the way.
Q. For your American fans, I wondered if you could talk a bit about playing college tennis at TCU, how you ended up in Texas, a big sports state?
CAMERON NORRIE: Yeah, ended up at TCU. Got actually very fortunate with the coaches there. Devin Bowen, Dave Roditi, both great guys on and off the court. I took a visit there kind of last minute. I liked both Roditi and Devin when I first met them.
Great little campus there. I was like, All right, this is where I can go and work hard. The weather is going to be good. I had a good feel about the place. I had a wonderful team there.
I think college tennis is a great decision, especially coming from where I was top 10 in juniors, just definitely gave me some more time to mature and go out and really get stuck in and enjoy my time there, get an education as well.
Everything is organized for you. Your friends are there. You get to hang out with them on the weekends. You get to practice with them and get better. I was able to not really think about the tour and the scarring of losing a lot of matches in futures. I thought it was really a great decision for me.
I was really enjoying it there, being able to get around to the festivities of the football. I really enjoyed that as well. They got a big game today. They play OU at OU. I think it's just kicked off. I'm looking forward to that. Go Frogs for today.
Q. Back on the Battle of the Brits, are you committed to playing in December? Do you think it's going to be quite feisty?
CAMERON NORRIE: Yeah, I'm going to be playing. It's definitely going to be a great event. We don't want to lose to England. Everyone is ready for that. I think it's a really cool event, especially with getting some tennis in Scotland at that time of year and around Christmastime.
People don't have much tennis to be watching, so I think it will be great for the Scottish public. Hopefully it can inspire some younger generation to come out and watch some of the best Brits in the world go toe-to-toe. We definitely don't want to lose to them, they don't want to lose to us. We're going to be doing it just for bragging rights more than anything.
We're looking forward to that event. I think Jamie has done a wonderful, wonderful effort putting that all together and making it such a great show, especially for Scottish tennis as well.
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