January 5, 2022
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
J. THOMPSON/C. O'Connell
1-6, 7-5, 6-4
Q. It was a close game, but you got the win in the end. How are you feeling after the match?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, great. I guess that's the kind of match you want to start the new year with, a tough one, get some court time. Didn't necessarily want it to be a three-set match, but I'll take a win any day of the week.
Q. We've talked about probably not a great end to last year and obviously dropping the first set today. How important was it to turn that around and get a bit of confidence ahead of the Australian Open?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, very. I didn't think I played a bad first set, but I thought Chris played some of the best tennis he's played. He came out, he was on fire, he jumped me. His ball striking was incredible. He was serving well. I just had to hang around, and thankfully got off to a decent start in the second and sort of edged my way back into the match.
Yeah, I think I competed quite well.
Q. Just touching on what you said at the start, if you were to script the start to the season, is that exactly the way you would do it where you're challenged severely early, you fight your way back, then you find a bit of rhythm? Is that in some ways better than say a 6-2, 6-2 start to the year?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, in some ways, yes. Get the legs going, get nerves back into it. It was tight there for a lot of the match. But yeah, maybe not a 6-1 first set and over in 20 minutes.
Yeah, I guess it made me concentrate a little bit harder and get myself back into the match. Maybe that's just what I needed, to get a little bit of match toughness.
Q. Having gone through the health issues late last month, how long did it take you to get fully over it, and how are you feeling now? What were some of the issues you had to go through with the COVID?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, I mean, it was bad timing. In a lot of ways I thought it was good timing, right after my last tournament, just before Davis Cup. I thought I would have got rid of it quicker. But it took nearly two weeks to get rid of.
I didn't necessarily feel bad. I was just tired. I had one bad day where I had a bit of a temperature, but that was it.
Yeah, but I think the thing that killed me is I didn't want to give it to anyone else, so I sort of locked myself up for two weeks, and then unfortunately I gave it to my coach, and that put me out for another week. I just felt like I wasn't doing any training. I literally did nothing for three weeks apart from eat rubbish and watch TV, and that made it worse because I lost a few kilos of muscle and I was pretty skinny, wasn't as fit, so I had to work really hard in those first few weeks of the preseason, but I feel like I'm back to normal now.
It took a few weeks. I remember my first few training sessions I was shaking and I was really weak. Yeah, it took probably two, three weeks to come back to normal.
Q. So it was really tough those first couple of practice training sessions that you had physically?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, for sure. I remember doing gym when I first got back to Australia, and my trainer had dinner for me ready after the session. My hands were shaking. I couldn't get the food on the fork, and I didn't even get it in my mouth. I was just hurting.
Q. I've got to ask you about the news of the day and your reaction, I guess, to Novak Djokovic to getting his exemption to come and play at the Aussie Open and also the vociferous reaction to it. What have you made of it today?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, not big on the news. The only thing that I know is that he got the exemption, and I think it's good that he's playing here. That's all I can really say. I haven't read anyone's opinions on it.
I know that we're big on vaccination in Australia, and yeah, I haven't really had much to say. I'm happy he's playing. I think it should be the choice of the person whether they want to get the vaccination, but that's all I have to say about it really.
Q. Following up on that, your own experience with COVID, you mentioned there how much you went through. Has it changed at all your perspective on the whole thing?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Not really because, I mean, I wasn't vaccinated when I got it, and I didn't feel bad at all. But I know everyone is different.
Yeah, it's so hard to say whether if I was vaccinated at that time it had have helped me, but I'd be surprised if it did, and I didn't feel that bad. I know everyone is different, so it's hard to comment.
Q. So you got your vaccinations after you got back to Australia?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah. Sorry, no, I got it after I had COVID, before I got back to Australia. I knew I had to get vaccinated to come back here and play, and Australia's rule is after you're vaccinated -- after you get the injection it's seven days, so got it done, waited seven days and then got back on a plane home, and that was that.
Q. Where were you at that time?
JORDAN THOMPSON: In Sweden with my coach. Unfortunately I gave it to him. Yeah, it was a few weeks off. Should have been back into training, but unfortunately couldn't because I passed it on to him. But it's history now.
Q. Who are you working with now?
JORDAN THOMPSON: Peter Luczak. He lives in Sweden. He's been traveling with me for nearly two years. But also still with the Davis Cup squad. I know Jaymon Crabb has been on court with me in Sydney doing most of my preseason, and yeah, nothing has really changed apart from Lucz can travel a little bit more freely as he's living overseas. Yeah, I'm just thankful for everyone that's been working with me because we're all on good terms, no matter who I'm using.
Q. Where do you think your form is at now? Starting a season is obviously always really tough, but you've had a hit-out now and you've had some good results at the start of the year before. Where do you think you're at comparatively?
JORDAN THOMPSON: It's hard to say. First match of the year, no one has played for a couple of months. I know I haven't played for a couple of months.
But I thought the level was quite good today. I thought Chris played a great first set, probably the best tennis I've seen him play, and unfortunately it was against me. I competed hard. I felt like it was pretty good level all around, and never have to worry about me competing hard.
I thought I played smart. I thought I played a little bit more aggressive than usual, and yeah, just -- it's so hard to say, but I guess we'll see tomorrow in the next match.
Q. You probably had your head down for much of the day, but the reaction to the Novak stuff has been huge and fiery from the Australian public. Just wanted to ask if you can understand why a lot of people would be unhappy with what's happened here.
JORDAN THOMPSON: Yeah, I can see why they're upset, but yeah, as I said, I know a lot of the sporting -- I know they felt you had to be vaccinated to play. I can see why people are upset. Yeah, it's a difficult one. I can see why people are angry. But to me, honestly, I don't really give a shit. If he doesn't want to get -- I just think people should have their say if they want to get vaccinated or not, and I don't -- I sort of just worry about myself. Yeah, honestly I'm glad that he's playing. It's up to him whether he gets it or not. Yeah, I don't really have much to say.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports