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January 22, 2022

Alex De Minaur

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Press Conference

A. de MINAUR/P. Andujar

6-4, 6-4, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Another very solid win. It's really special for you to play again on Rod Laver with Rod Laver on court to watch you. How does that feel, especially given the win?

ALEX de MINAUR: Yeah, I mean, another very special feeling. And look, it's one of those moments you kind of dream of, play night match, 7:00 p.m. prime time on Rod Laver Arena on your own merits, and have the legend Rod himself watching you play.

So it's definitely a great moment to savor for many years to come. And of course to go out there and play such a good match and win on this occasion, it's a great feeling.


Q. He was never going to give you any easy points tonight, obviously. What were your tactics coming into the match and how were you going to counter that?

ALEX de MINAUR: Yeah, I've known him for a while. I've hit a lot with him. He's a great guy, and I know what he was going to bring to the table, as you said, a lot of tough points, he wasn't going to give me a lot of freebies.

Tactics going in was to keep playing my game and, you know, wait for the right ball to be aggressive. I felt like maybe I didn't hit that aggressive ball too well, didn't find too many chances to be aggressive, so I had to kind of bring a little bit of variety, make sure the rallies were longer, and really just try to make him move as much as I could on court.

I thought I used my slice well, my backhand line, and basically all of that just to set up, you know, the sure forehand.

Q. You appeared to be playing with a lot of confidence. Is that how you're feeling at the moment?

ALEX de MINAUR: Yeah, look, for me, I put in all the hard work, so now, getting the wins under my belt is, you know, it's a great confi booster. I'm happy with where my level is at, so I'm just at the moment taking care of business.

I'm very happy I was able to do that in the first week of the slam. We're not done, but what I'm most proud of myself was maybe I didn't play my best level throughout the three matches, but I was solid and I got the win and I didn't spend eight hours on court. You know, I went out there, did what I needed to do, great attitude, positive vibes, and got the job done. So that's also a confi booster, for sure.

Q. This whole week it looks like you've generated a lot more pace on your groundstrokes. Is that something you've specifically worked on in the offseason or is that just something that's just come naturally as you've gotten a little bit older?

ALEX de MINAUR: Yeah, that's one of the things we've obviously worked on. And, hey, whenever the season ends, you sit down with your team and, you know, you kind of talk things through, see what areas you can improve on and what areas we need to improve on to kind of take it to the next level, and that was definitely one.

To take it to these top guys, you know, you've got to be aggressive and really take it to them. You can't just sit back and let them bully you around. That was a focus, to really kind of step that up and just have aggressive mindset. You know, I'm happy I've been able to start the year playing that way, and playing some great tennis and getting the results thanks to that. Now it's all about just keep building on that.

Everyone nowadays hits the ball so hard, so you kind of have to improve with the rest of them.

Q. Jannik Sinner next. What is the next sort of 48 hours look like for you, and how do you view that matchup?

ALEX de MINAUR: Well, first thing I'm going to do tomorrow morning is, like every other off-day, I'm going to head over to South Yarra to my little coffee shop in the morning for breakfast. I've been missing out on that every day because we're staying at The Crown. Normally South Yarra is my spot. That's first of all.

Then I'll hit at 3:00. I hit with Jannik in Sydney. I've hit with him a lot. I've played him. I know what's coming: Immense firepower. I'm going to have to be ready to, as we have just talked about, not get bullied around the court and really take it to him.

That's definitely the game plan. Relax, recover, and get ready to just leave it all out there come two days.

Q. The coffee shop, is it like a treat or have you come out of a period where you can't do it? Time off tomorrow morning...

ALEX de MINAUR: Because normally we stay over in South Yarra, that area, and this year is kind of all changed because a lot of -- well, I would say 97% of the players are staying all in The Crown kind of area, because to be safe and all that. So it's a little bit different to previous years where I would normally choose to stay at South Yarra, because I know all my spots, my little coffee spots there. And I love that area.

So during kind of match days and training, it's pretty hectic and you don't have too much time, but I've been setting up every kind of off-days to hit in the afternoons so I can really relax and cherish that morning. Yeah, just going to a normal coffee shop and enjoying a great coffee.

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