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May 20, 2023

Holger Rune

Roma, Italia

Press Conference

H. RUNE/C. Ruud

6-7, 6-4, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Holger, well done. What changed for you at a set and a break down today?

HOLGER RUNE: Yeah, it was a difficult start for me. I think he played really, really strong. Obviously I had not a good record against him. I had to find solution, a different solution, to beat him today.

I told myself to relax when I was down 4-2 and just enjoy the moment, try to play the tennis that I like. I managed to do that and play better and better. I think at the end of the third set I played some of my best tennis.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Shot-making, plan execution, character, what's something that you liked the most in the match?

HOLGER RUNE: Sorry, I didn't really understand.

Q. What is something that you liked the most from yourself in this match?

HOLGER RUNE: I think how I managed to stay mentally composed when I was down and keep believing and keep trying to seek for my best tennis because I didn't find it for the first set and a half. It's tough. It's long time not to be able to find your best shots, stuff like this.

But again, it was strong from my side that I kept believing. I managed to find it. I kept trusting the process and the way of playing, that I play.

Yeah, I managed to make it happen and beat him, so I'm super happy.

Q. After a difficult start it seems the Italian crowd adopted you. Maybe you are the most Italian of the Scandinavian because of your passionate behavior.

HOLGER RUNE: Yeah, I enjoy to play in Italy and Rome. It's a great atmosphere. There's a great energy on the court, super support. It's a very passionate crowd. I really like it. It brings some of my best tennis.

I'm having a good time, so I'm super happy, excited for tomorrow. It's going to be a tough match no matter who I'm playing, so I'm looking forward to it.

Q. It was the first time you were playing Casper after Paris. I'm wondering if you clarified in this year what happened? I don't know if you practice during the year together, if you ever talk about that.

HOLGER RUNE: Yeah, we didn't practice actually. All good. I mean, we obviously talk after French Open and we're good. I have zero problem with him. He's a great player. He's showing some of his best tennis, especially on clay. He's tough to play. I respect him a lot. I'm happy to finally get my first win over him.

Q. You've got a crazy good record against top-five players. How do you explain that at only 20 years old?

HOLGER RUNE: Yeah, I play some of my best tennis when I play the top guys of the world. I mean, it's a good time to play your best tennis because you need it against those players. I've managed to do it many times now.

Yeah, I think it's obviously some of the toughest challenge to face guys in top five because they're obviously some of the best guys in the world.

But, yeah, I play well when I play them.

Q. Everybody likes your talent, your fighting spirit, the way you're able to come back from 4-2. Not everybody likes the fact that you take a medical timeout many times in different and difficult situations. Do you think there is something that could create you some problems with the crowd, with the public, that they may not like, the strategy or tactic? Just think about that, if you think there's some reason, if it's reasonable or not.

HOLGER RUNE: Yeah, I take a medical timeout when I have a problem and when I feel pain. I mean, I do it sometimes because I feel the pain. That's it. I want to get the treatment, that's it. I don't know how to answer that.

I think it's allowed. If you feel the pain, why not? I mean, there's ATP physio. You have the opportunity to use him.

I know there's certainly moments in matches where you probably shouldn't take a medical timeout, where I don't take a medical timeout. I take it when it's in the beginning of the set or somewhere. Mostly when I have a problem.

I think it has to be -- I mean, it's fair to take it if you have a problem I think, yeah.

Q. Who do you prefer as an opponent, Medvedev or Tsitsipas?

HOLGER RUNE: I don't know who is going to win. It's 4-All now. I think it's going to be a close match. We'll see.

It's both going to be tough players to play in the final. They're both great. Medvedev obviously starting to play much better on clay this season. Stef always played great on clay.

It's going to be interesting. I just got to recover now and try to play my best tomorrow.

Q. As a Scandinavian, a few years ago did you look up at Casper Ruud because he was from Norway, close to where you are?

HOLGER RUNE: I think it's great to see that we have now many good players in the top hundred, obviously two now in top 10, from Scandinavia. It's showing good signs of the northern part of Europe, that we can play good.

I mean, obviously back in the days we had a lot of Swedish players, amazing players, like Bjorn Borg, Wilander, these guys. It's cool to see. As I said, it's cool to see that we can play some good tennis.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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