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May 17, 2024

Alexander Zverev

Roma, Italia

Press Conference

A. ZVEREV/A. Tabilo

1-6, 7-6, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Sascha, please.

Q. What was the injury report on the finger? Did that affect you in the first set? Did you feel it at all maybe on the serve?

ALEXANDER ZVEREV: Yeah, my finger's pretty big. I think I tore a capsule, from what I understood. The one here. Don't ask me. I tore something. I don't know what it is. But I didn't break any bones, which is good. I did the x-ray yesterday. Yeah, my bones are fine. That's why I could play today. I managed the pain with pain killers, all of that.

The finger is still very, very big. It was manageable. Obviously I'm happy that I could manage today.

Q. How tough is Tobilo to play? In the first set he looked good.

ALEXANDER ZVEREV: Yeah, I mean, look, I didn't play well, but he was the reason why I didn't play well. He came out hitting the ball extremely hard. A lot of dropshots. Playing extremely aggressive. He didn't let me play. I have to give credit to him for not allowing me to play my game.

I was happy to kind of hang in in the second set. I thought that the second set he also played better than me. But I hung in there. Kind of changed in the tiebreak, the momentum changed since then. Obviously happy I kind of ran away with it in the third set.

Q. Last night you said that you could replace maybe Jannik here in Italy. Did you feel the push from the Italian crowd maybe in the second set?

ALEXANDER ZVEREV: It's funny that when I play in Italy, actually one of the three countries I would say where I get the most support. I mean, really, I feel like I'm Italian when I play here. I get so much support, so much love, so much energy from the crowd all the time. Even today.

Normally the crowd always wants the underdog to do good, the underdog to win. I really felt like they were behind me so much. It helps. I really appreciate it.

The Italians are a crazy crowd, and I love that. I love energy. I love when they're loud. And when they're for you, it's even better.

I would not replace Jannik, but maybe for this week, if they can see it like that, I'm happy about that.

Q. You won your first Masters 1000 in 2017 here. Maybe it was your turning point in your career. Now you are close to win your first Masters since Cincinnati and the injury. Do you think this will be another turning point after the injury?

ALEXANDER ZVEREV: Look, I hope so. If Rome is the place for firsts for me, then I'm happy about that. My first Masters 1000, as you said, as a 20-year-old was here. If this is my first Masters 1000 after the injury, I'm happy about that, as well. Especially at a place that I really love. Even outside of tennis, it's a city that I absolutely love and enjoy.

So, yeah, if that's the case, I would be more than happy about that.

Q. Could you possibly analyze the opponents. I think you have lost twice to Tommy, and you have a winning record against Nicolas.

ALEXANDER ZVEREV: Yeah, I mean, look, both of them, if they're in the semifinals, they're obviously playing some of the best tennis of their careers, right? Doesn't matter who it's going to be, it's going to be difficult.

I think Nicolas is one of the most aggressive players we have on the tour. Obviously huge serve, huge forehand. Tries to hit big from both sides of the court. A very impressive win last night I think against Tsitsipas. He was down throughout most of the match, always managed come back. Very impressive from him.

I think Tommy this year generally has been playing really well. He kind of got stopped a little bit maybe in Miami with the ankle injury. Before that, and also since returning, he's playing great.

Q. You said during the tournament you want to play as aggressive as you can. Today maybe you changed the momentum by reducing the rhythm. It means you can do everything?

ALEXANDER ZVEREV: It's also not easy to play aggressive against an opponent who tries to go for every single shot. In the first set I barely touched the ball. To play aggressive, you still need some rhythm. I didn't have that today.

At the end of the day, it's also sometimes about finding solutions. I found a solution, especially in the tiebreak of the second set. I think the third set, I was a lot more aggressive. I was more comfortable in my shots.

Sometimes it's easy to say to hit the ball harder or go for more winners. If you're down a set, it's tiebreak of the second set, you also have to make the shots that you're going for.

I feel like I did well today in that department.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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