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March 17, 2010

Novak Djokovic


I. LJUBICIC/N. Djokovic
7-5, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Ivan already gave you a lot of trouble in Dubai. Was today a very different match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I don't think any match that we play is different. It's more or less based on the, you know, service and returns. You know, as long as -- as much as I get to the rallies, I think I have more chances to win the point. It wasn't the case today.
I think he -- I had a lot of opportunities, and I didn't use many of them. Actually, my execution was very bad, and, you know, he played well when he needed to and he served well when he needed to.
I mean, I was aware of his qualities before the match, and I was aware that, you know, if he serves well, then he can play relaxed on the return games.
So that was the case. I played a terrible game on 4-3 for me, the first set. I think that was one of the turning points in the whole match.

Q. Is it fair to say that you never really sort of felt comfortable or found your groove this tournament?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, that's true. I mean, this is a tournament where I definitely didn't feel comfortable on the court. It's not because of the tournament itself. It's just because I had a very tiring couple of weeks coming from Davis Cup, which was emotionally very exhausting for me.
I had to travel the next day, you know, already, and came here, so I was not -- I am not happy with the overall performance that I had in this tournament, because I know I could have played better and could have done better.
But, look, you know, under decent circumstances I still made it to the fourth round, which is quite okay. And life goes on. I will get ready for Miami as best as I can.

Q. Are you glad to have a little bit of rest, even if it means you had to lose that you get that?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, very much. I am very glad that I'm now gonna have, you know, at least three, four days without any practice. And I need that, you know. People don't realize that you need equally to be rested as you need to practice, and this is the balance that, you know, I'm still trying to make, you know, with the schedule.
It's really difficult. But, you know, I'm going to take it easy now.

Q. Probably you don't have any regrets, but any regrets for playing Davis Cup or not?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, there's no regrets. There is no regrets for anything I've done in my life.
I went through a lot of positive emotions there. It took a lot out of me, obviously, and wasn't that great for Indian Wells. But I was very satisfied, and I still am, for winning that tie, you know. It's something else.

Q. Will you look forward to playing him again in the next round of Davis Cup?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, I mean, he's playing really well. Couple of years ago he was No. 3 of the world, and he showed today why, you know.
He can hit the ball very well from the back court. He has a great anticipation, and has one of the best serves on tour.
He was struggling a little bit with injuries and dropped a little bit, but now he's back, you know. He's back in top 20, and he deserves to be there.

Q. There's one more tournament before the clay court season. Is it gonna be important for you to make a statement there at Miami before we switch over to the clay?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, look, now Miami is my priority, so I will try to focus and get as ready as possible for that tournament.
I really, really want to go far there, because -- still, even though I lost today, I still feel that some things went better. I think I served better even though I was broken a couple of times. But still my first serve was working better than was the case in the first couple matches here.
So this is what I want to work on, and then clay, you know, which is generally one of my favorite surfaces. So again, the transition between hardcourts and clay, there's not much time. Again, you have only a week, but...

Q. Have you rescheduled? Last year, I mean, you had a great clay court season, and you came into Roland Garros a little bit tired.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I can't do much, unfortunately, because I have to play Monte-Carlo. I live there, you know. It's one of my favorite tournaments. Then I go to Rome, obviously, and then I have my hometown tournament, Belgrade. Then I have, you know, Madrid and then Paris.

Q. So it's the same exact schedule as last year?

Q. Talking about schedule, I mean, can you just talk about your thoughts about the Davis Cup scheduling? Putting it so close to a big tournament like this and having you have to make that decision or push to prioritize?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I wish some things could have gone a different way. If I could change something, I would. But it's not that easy, you know, obviously.
It's my individual opinion that, you know, I wish, you know, I could have a bit more time between surface changing, you know, so I can adjust a bit slowly without any pressure. But this is the way that tennis is, and it's been already like that for many years.
I mean, I'm not going to be the black sheep, the one who is gonna, you know, be the stubborn one and say, you know, this is not right. We are working towards some issues, and the guys agree definitely there are some periods in the year that we want to work on and make the schedule work better for us, for our health, and that's the main priority.
I mean, you don't want to risk your health for -- I mean, tennis is our life and it's something we do and we love to do, but, again, health is the most important.

Q. Now how does it work? Will you fly to Miami tomorrow? Will you take a couple days off?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I never been in LA during the day, so I really -- LA is so close, so I want to pay a little visit to LA before I go there.

Q. Anything you want to see in particular?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Oh, let's keep that secret, please.

Q. It's better at night.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Some private things.

End of FastScripts

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