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September 2, 2008

Novak Djokovic


N. DJOKOVIC/T. Robredo
4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 5-7, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How are you feeling?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, very exhausted, but I've tried -- sorry you have been waiting for me over an hour. I've really been trying to pay attention on recovery priorities. So right now I feel better. Hopefully I'm going to be ready for next match.

Q. How's your hip?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, the hip was the problem, yeah, during the match, but it was more exhaustion.
The physio helped me a lot, and it was a hot day. So mostly, you know, I don't think I would feel that bad today if I didn't finish that late two nights ago.
So it was quite difficult schedule for me, but -- so you can recover two times playing four hours is not easy, so I had to really put an effort in.

Q. After the match, your mother sort of hit her heart and you did that, then you hit everything else.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's just probably mixed emotions after the match, just trying to show them, you know, how much effort I put into this match.

Q. Did you feel residual results? I mean, coming off of that late-night match coming in today, did you, starting out even in the first set, did you feel like you had less in the tank than you would ordinarily like?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yes, I did. There is no doubt about that. I didn't feel well. The moment I stepped on the court, I felt, already, as you said, less energy in the tank. So I really tried to forget about that, to eliminate those things, but I just had to, you know. I had to take a medical timeout a couple of times, go to the bathroom, because just many things involved. You know, I want to do everything to win.

Q. How's your ankle? Your right ankle?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, well, if we start talking about things that are bothering me, as I said on the court, we'll chat for a long time. It's better I skip all these things and leave it behind. Hopefully I can be better.

Q. Given all this, do you wonder how you won that match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Ah, well, again, trying to be positive. After that fourth set, I really doubted, you know, especially on that start of the fifth set, because I didn't know if I was able to continue on going on the high level, and he was just getting into the game more and more. Physically he was fitter than me, I had a feeling. And winning that fourth set, he gained confidence. So he was really going for the shots.
But somehow I managed. I managed to really stay focused and play the right shots at the right time.

Q. Was there any moment where you thought of pulling out? You really looked spent.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, there was, of course, but I didn't want. I said to myself, if I play for three-and-a-half hours, you know, four sets, I'll hold on for another sets. We'll see how it goes.

Q. Which match was tougher, this year's or last year's against Stepanek first round?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Oh, it's difficult to compare, but both of them, they were really exhausting. This match had more rallies, I can say. And we played more -- with Stepanek, it was more on serve and volley, and, you know, varieties in the game.
But here it was, it was more from the baseline, so we both had really long rallies. Can't really say which one...

Q. What did you do to your hip? What exactly happened?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: After the long match on Sunday night, I didn't have so much time, as I said, to recover. One day I went to sleep at 4:30 in the morning. With all the adrenaline in my blood, all these things, you can't really sleep right away.
So I kind of, you know, ruined that biorhythm, and this morning I woke up, I didn't feel really great. I felt soreness in my muscles and mostly in my hip.
I made some quick movements in the match, and reacted. Luckily for me, it wasn't really that bad.

Q. Whoever wins, it's going to be a tough match, tough opponent in the next go around. The fact that you're able to, you know, wake up this morning, not feel well, come to the stadium and prevail under very difficult conditions, I mean, can you draw some confidence in that, whether you face Fernando or Andy in the next round?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's always good to have the tough matches in the Grand Slams. Not too much, of course, for physical condition, but again, mentally, you grow stronger. I get that feeling. Over the years, I've been playing, most of these long matches I have positive score, so this is very encouraging.
So I will have now more time to recover, and I think it's more or less matter of my physical condition, if I will be fit enough to challenge one of these two guys. Whoever I play is going to be really difficult encounter.

Q. Here they play the semifinals and finals back to back. If this was a semifinal, how would you feel going into the final, if this had been a semifinal today?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's not a semifinal, so it was just the fourth round. And, you know, I play every match like it's final. Like, you know, it's very important for me to create this consistency in my head, especially, you know, just to try to not underestimate any opponents and play the same way against everybody.
Everybody's motivated more to play great against you if you're a favorite in that match. So most of the matches I play, I'm favorite on the paper, of course. You know, you have to get used to if you want to stay on top.

Q. How do you feel about the back-to-back semifinals and finals?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Which back to back?

Q. Well, you play on Saturday semifinal here and final Sunday. Other Grand Slams you have a day between.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I can't -- I can't affect on that, obviously. Obviously it's not my decision, but depends, you know.
Last year was good, because I wasn't playing a lot of long matches in that second week. I had straight set win in the semifinals and quarterfinals, as well. But this year it's been different. So it's more or less same for everybody, you know. You can't really judge.

Q. Do you plan to watch the Roddick match tonight? If Roddick does win tonight, what are your thoughts on potentially facing him next round?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, yeah, I'm going to have a look, of course. My coach more.
As I said, whoever wins, it's going to be a tough match. Both of them very experienced, great players. Many years in top 10, both of them. Roddick, we all know, he's former U.S. Open champion, couple times Grand Slam finalist, of course, and No. 1. So he has all the things, you know, under his belt that he needs to have. He's playing in front of his crowd, on his favorite tournament.
It's always a difficult one to play against Roddick wherever, but especially here. So I cannot say who I wish to have in quarterfinals.

Q. Last year the crowds loved you. You were doing the impersonations.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Not anymore. (laughter.)

Q. I know. This year you mentioned they were in favor of Robredo? Does that surprise you? And why do you think that is?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I don't know. I felt that, but it's -- I can't really affect on that too much. Maybe they didn't like the way I throw the racquet in one point, so I don't know. I just really don't know. Maybe they don't like me anymore.

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