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March 15, 2011

Milos Raonic


7-6, 4-6, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You probably haven't had a chance to hash it out. What would you sort of say after this little bit of time?
MILOS RAONIC: Well, it's just I came out, gave it my best. He played well. He was playing well. He was doing a lot of good things. I thought I played well, and he was the better player today.

Q. You seemed to have a bit of trouble on the forehand, putting a few into the net. Was he giving you something that you weren't able to adjust to?
MILOS RAONIC: It wasn't the greatest of matches, but I think he did a lot of things right, and he did a lot of things well. It put pressure on me, and I didn't adjust to it the best today, and therefore he came out on top. He played really well, and he deserved to win.

Q. Can you talk about that tiebreaker? Seems like after -- I don't remember what the score was, but after, towards the end, he had a couple -- he missed a few of your forehands.
MILOS RAONIC: No, in the beginning I was struggling a bit with this. I was struggling getting around and giving myself enough space so I could hit it cleanly. It wasn't going the forehand through there as cleanly as I wanted, but it was okay. It came back together.
I played a pretty good second set. I played just not a great start to the third, but I ended up playing a bit better there.

Q. Is it positive the way you came back in the third set and made it close?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah, I gave myself a chance, and that's always what I'm trying to do out there. Doesn't matter what the score is. It's my job to give myself a chance and to keep fighting.
Who knows what can happen. There is a lot on these matches. I fight for every point, I fight for every match, I fight for every game, and it's important for me to keep the spirit and stay hungry for the wins.

Q. Did his game surprise you with anything?
MILOS RAONIC: No. I know how he can play. I played him a bit in juniors. He's been playing really well this week. He did a lot of good things. He made -- he was playing smart.
He made the shots when he went for them. It was good. I just wish I could have used maybe a few more opportunities. But outside of that, I have not much to complain about.

Q. Is there a part of you hoping to get that opportunity to play Roger?
MILOS RAONIC: Yeah, but I guess that will have to wait till another time.

Q. Shortly after you were born, Daniel Nestor won a big Davis Cup match for Canada against Stefan Edberg, who was No. 1 on the tour. Now you are on the tour and he's still playing strongly in the doubles. Do you feel there is a passing of a torch? What's your relationship with Daniel?
MILOS RAONIC: No, It's a good relationship. I see him around a lot, see him at Davis Cup a lot. I see him more at these events since I'm so new to this, and he's very helpful. He's helping me out. He's helping me out with sort of just the way of the tour, sort of getting used to this and knowing how to deal with what and what to expect.
He's helping this, and he's still -- there's no really passing of the torch. He's still what, 3 in the world in doubles? He's still doing well.

Q. Has he expressed any relief that there's someone to sort of count on for those Davis Cup wins?
MILOS RAONIC: I think he's happy about what I'm achieving, and these kind of things, and he's proud. But I think this is a very national skill. I'm happy with what I've done, and I'm not gonna win always and didn't win today. But if I look over everything, I'm getting better and I'm playing better and better every day. I'm happy with that.

Q. Some players from Canada has been critical of Tennis Canada in the past and how much of a financial burden it is for families to bring up future prospects. Can you talk about your experience with that regard?
MILOS RAONIC: At the beginning, there was this, but the thing is, they are there. They are putting the money in the right ways. They're trying to help out as much as possible.
If you look, for example, in countries like Serbia, you ask Djokovic, I don't think he was getting much support. There's other countries who don't have as much of a support system, but they're popping out top players.
It comes down to the athlete a lot of the time, but also it's good when you have a supportive national program to help out and support a federation that will be there behind you, not just when things are good, but they're there to help you grow and help you to get to the top.

Q. Was there is a point you were frustrated with the support you were getting or your ability to get into the training academy?
MILOS RAONIC: No. The thing is I was too young to really know. When I went there, I understood how everything worked, but before this, my dad dealt with all the politics and all of this. So I was sort of kept out of it. It's better to ask him than me.

Q. You played an awful lot of matches the last few months. Is there any element of that piling up, maybe you were a little flat today because of all the tennis you've played?
MILOS RAONIC: No, just a few things have been coming up, not much; a few more than normal.
I had a little spasm in the back of the knee in Davis Cup; a little spasm in the back last, two, three days ago; had a little sprain in the ankle. All these little things are coming up. My job right now is to be careful with it and make sure that I'm healthy because there's still a long year ahead and I still want to keep doing better than I have doing now, so this is going to be a big thing for me to make sure I do the right steps I need to do to get better.

Q. Do you know what your plans are between now and your future in Miami?
MILOS RAONIC: I leave tomorrow night. I think I have to do the ATP university. I will be in Miami a few days for this and I will be getting there ready.
I don't know where I will end up next week on the list, but I think I might be a bit closer to getting seeded hopefully. We'll see with how everything turns out, and that would be nice considering how many matches I've played. But if not, I will be ready to play whichever way. Wednesday or Thursday, I will be ready to play full out and I will be preparing to play as much as I can for these days.

Q. Outside of yourself, do you know the top one or two or three athletes to come out of Montenegro?
MILOS RAONIC: We're good at water polo. We have tall guys, so there is a few basketball players.
I can't tell you names, but there is a good guy in soccer that played in Inter Milan. I don't know too much. But water polo I think we're doing good.

Q. On your first match point, you hit a backhand passing shot, hooked the net and bounced up. You actually raised your hand to apologize before the point was over. Do you remember that?

Q. Don't you think that's going too tentatively?
MILOS RAONIC: It's a part of the game, the lets and stuff, but if I think it's right to apologize, I will apologize. That's sort of just how I am.
I will raise a hand. Even though if somebody is standing in and I go for a body serve and it gets close to him, I raise a hand. I understand it's part of the game when somebody's at the net maybe to go straight for them. I will raise a hand to apologize for this, because at the end of the day, you want to win the point, but as respect you still are sorry.
You don't want to go head hunting for heads and just telling everybody sort of, If you get in the way of my ball it's your fault. No, it's just a respect thing.

Q. You said you're very new to the tour. What have been some of your challenges for you transitioning on the tour?
MILOS RAONIC: Right now I think the biggest challenge day to day, every match is a tough match and maintaining with the body and everything, because it doesn't matter -- you're never going to have a match where you can sort of let up and just the body is going to recover.
Day to day it's going to be a tough match, and it's going to take a toll on the body. So managing of all this, and scheduling is going to be a big thing. And then outside of the court it's been a lot of weeks on the road, so getting the time to still work on things, because even though you're at tournaments and stuff and you have matches, you still want to be improving.
So managing time with this and making sure you're always improving and making sure you're getting better, because I always want to achieve better things.
So it comes down to management, managing everything. The press, the media and stuff, it's nice. Sometimes you feel bad saying no to signing an autograph, but sometimes you're late to the practice court and stuff like this.
But outside of this, everything I think is pretty nice about this lifestyle.

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