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August 2, 2008

Novak Djokovic


6-1, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How do you feel being the first to beat the new No. 1?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, nobody is unbeatable, obviously, but the way he was playing we all thought that he's not going to lose any time soon.
But, you know, I just tried not to think about his winning streak and his new ranking spot. Not official still.
But, you know, I tried just to focus on my game. I won against him three times before on this surface, and I know what it takes to win against him on hard courts. I got the best out of it in last couple of matches we played in this surface.
I knew that I have to step in and be aggressive and take the chances that have been given me, so that what's did.

Q. I'm sure it wasn't easy in the first set, but it seemed like you knew exactly what you wanted to do and your shots was hitting the lines.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, was probably caught a little bit surprise. You know, he didn't expect such a fast start from my side. That was my intention, you know, just try to step in and go for the shots.
I didn't want to be in the long rallies with him, because that's how he wins the points. He's physically a very well-prepared player. As soon as you get to the longer rallies with him he gets the momentum going and he gets the rhythm, and so it could go either way in the second set.
He had a breakpoint. It was a pretty long rally and I managed to stay in it.

Q. Does it give you the feeling that maybe now you're going to start to get back to somewhere near your best?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I think tonight I was, if not my best, then very, very near my best. I mean, I was playing great tennis and everything that I imagined to do against Rafa. So hopefully I can, you know, be as consistent as today again tomorrow.

Q. First of all, was the first set too easy in light of did you expect him to play better in the second set? I mean, it looked like two different matches.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, well, after such an easy first set result-wise, obviously a player like Nadal comes back and tries something else. I knew that, so I just tried to stay with him and hold my service games comfortably.
It's a fast surface, so it was really not easy to return here. He was struggling with my serves. When I needed to serve out well I did, so that was quite important.

Q. Do you think you had the edge physically? Do you think he was maybe more tired than you were today?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I don't know. Maybe. He's going to tell you better if he's tired or not. But as I said, I was trying to focus on myself, not on him, and just play what I imagined to play.

Q. Seems like to stay with you on this surface he has to play a little bit outside of his comfort level. Is that gives you confidence, or do you feel that out there?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, if you say so, that he has to get out of his comfort zone. But I think he's obviously one the best players on this surface still. He's been proving that this year playing finals of Miami, semis of Australian Open, Indian Wells, and won Toronto and here semis again.
He's been very consist. He was losing most of the matches on this surface, but yet again, he was always in the final stages of the tournaments.
He's a player that you really have to play your best to win against. That's it. And I did my best tonight and I won.

Q. What do you have to do tomorrow against Andy Murray to win the title?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Just have to play the way I played tonight and the way I play always on hard courts. I made a mistake last time I played with him in Toronto. I was letting go of my chances and he was in the control of the match more. He was going for the shots. He was playing wisely, you know, and obviously he learned something from our past matches.
So I know what I did wrong. Hopefully I can turn it in a positive matter for me tomorrow.

Q. In the first set you earned 25 points; Rafa only 11. Have you ever played better tennis against him?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I don't know. I mean, really, I played in Indian Wells this year I think if not equally then very, very close performance as well as this one in Indian Wells and Miami as well last year.
So obviously the best tennis and the most chances I have against him is on this surface, so this is what gives me a lot of confidence.

Q. You've said that hard courts are your favorite surface. After Wimbledon and last week in Toronto, even the beginning of the week here, how big that was win for your confidence?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I was slowly, slowly getting the momentum. I was saying after each match that I was feeling better and better, so I can confirm that even now. My form is rising and I feel that I'm on my best now.
I just need to try to keep that and keep that going even for tomorrow's final.

Q. What has been the secret about achieving that? Just getting better rested or getting better in the mental shape?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: All combined. Everything is combined. This is individual sport, and it requires a lot of time on the court and off the court as well. A lot of dedication physically and mentally.
But, you know, I have all the strokes I need, and I know that I'm more or less complete player. It's just a matter of mental, you know, ability and confidence. If I feel good in that moment.
So now I feel great, and hopefully I can feel that as well tomorrow.

End of FastScripts

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