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November 20, 2022

Rajeev Ram

Joe Salisbury

Turin, Itay

Pala Alpitour, Torino

Press Conference


7-6, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: First of all, congratulations on winning the 2022 Nitto ATP Finals.

Joe, you are the first Brit to ever win this title. Rajeev, you're the 18th American. Joe, what does it mean to be here and win this prestigious title?

JOE SALISBURY: It's very special. I think it makes it extra special being the first Brit. Hopefully there will be many more. There were three of us here this week. All did really well, had really good years. I'm sure there will be many more.

But, yeah, really happy with it. I think it's just special for us after coming so close in a couple years, to get over the line this time feels amazing.

THE MODERATOR: What does it mean to end the season on such a high note?

RAJEEV RAM: Yeah, it was one of our biggest goals, to win this title. I think it gives us huge momentum going into next year.

But just we're going to enjoy this as long as we can because it's just such a special tournament to play in and to obviously win.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You've played together a long time, winning nine titles together. What is the secret of your duo, couple? Basically the secret of your success?

JOE SALISBURY: I don't think there's any secret apart from, yeah, we get on well together. We work hard. We have a great team. We have some great coaches and a wide support network that are all trying to get the best out of us.

But, yeah, we work hard and we try to get better every time we step on the court. I think we've done that over the last few years. Yeah, we help each other out on the court. We get the best out of each other on court.

Yeah, I think we keep getting better.

Q. The best quality of your partner and the thing that you just can't stand about him, on court and off court?

RAJEEV RAM: The best quality of my partner? I mean, as a tennis player, I think his sense of playing well in the biggest moments is incredible. Like today, I thought he played one of the best matches of the season for sure and maybe since we've played together. I thought he was incredible.

It's a big reason why I think when we get to the ends of these tournaments, we tend to do pretty well. I think he's just able to raise his level incredibly.

Off the court I think he's, yeah, one of the easier guys to work with because he's always trying to get better, he's always looking to better himself, better me. I think it's helped me become a better player, for sure, and a better partner for him.

His worst quality? Sometimes he runs a little bit late, but that's all right (smiling). Manageable.


Q. Yes.

JOE SALISBURY: I think the best thing about Rajeev is that I think he's very levelheaded, always I think quite logical, quite rational, helps me when I can be a bit up and down, a bit with my emotions. I think with all his experience on the tour, yeah, he knows how to handle every situation that we come into.

He's also, yeah, an amazing player. Like, an incredible ball-striker. I wish I could hit the ball as cleanly as he can, but I'm not sure. I'll keep working on it, but I'm not sure if that will happen (smiling).

Then the worst?

RAJEEV RAM: I'm a bit lazy. It's true.

JOE SALISBURY: Yeah, he can be a little bit lazy sometimes. But it's almost like in a good way. It's like when I'm on court and I'm really working hard, really intense, I'm not hitting the ball that well, he's just down the other end not even moving his feet and hitting it clean. It sometimes annoys me (laughter).

Q. You won Australian Open together, US Open, Masters together, but not this one. Was that on your mind at the start of the week? How pleased are you to tick another title off?

JOE SALISBURY: Yeah, definitely. This is one of the biggest we've won. It's the biggest on the ATP Tour. Yeah, I mean, this would be right up there at the top of our list of ones we wanted to win.

Yeah, it's one we haven't won before. Yeah, of the few things we still wanted to achieve, this was definitely one of them. Yeah, really happy we've done that. I think also really happy about the way we've gone about it and everything we've dealt with this week.

But, yeah, this was definitely a huge one that we really wanted to win.

RAJEEV RAM: Same for me.

Yeah, I think we just plan our year and schedule for the biggest titles that we try and win. Like Joe said, this is one of 'em for sure. When we started this sort of swing, we knew whatever happened before that, we wanted to be as sharp and as ready as we can for this tournament.

Pretty pumped that it worked out like that.

Q. Obviously end of a long season. Have you got plans for the next six weeks?

RAJEEV RAM: I think we probably go about our off time slightly differently because of our age difference (smiling).

The good thing is I think we both know what we need to do to get ourselves in the best situation or state possible to start next year.

I think right away next year, it's a huge month in January. It's a tournament where we've done pretty well in the past, the Australian Open. I think we're pretty excited to give that another go.

JOE SALISBURY: Yeah, I mean, I'm sure we'll have some time off. Yeah, it's a long season. Yeah, we'll have a little break and then we'll get back training again for the start of next year.

Yeah, it's not too long, not too far away. We'll definitely enjoy a little break now.

Q. Are you disappointed with not being on the U.S. team in Malaga?

RAJEEV RAM: Very disappointed. I put in a lot of hard work this year to help the team get there. I felt like I had earned the spot, if you will. So I was quite surprised when I wasn't picked, and even more surprised to be honest that they only went with four players instead of five. That was the choice.

But, yeah, I was hoping to be on the team for sure.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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