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March 9, 2014

Novak Djokovic


N. DJOKOVIC/V. Hanescu
7‑6, 6‑2

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  A little bit on court you weren't entirely satisfied with your performance, but you got through it.  What do you think wasn't clicking for you out there today in that first set especially?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I know what it was.  It's one of those days where you get to serve well and everything else is just kind of trying to find the way to, you know, play the right shots at the right time.
You know, I didn't make any returns in in the first set.  Second set I also struggled with the return, which is one of my better sides in the game generally speaking.
And, you know, it's the first match and it takes a little bit of time to get used to the center court.  I haven't played on it this year.

Q.  You were very complimentary about this tournament and Larry Ellison.  In your opinion, what would happen if this tournament becomes really the biggest and largest in the world considering the Grand Slams?  What would happen then?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, you know, as long as you have somebody that is as influential and as passionate about a sport, investing so much money in the facilities and tournaments can only bring positive impact on our sport.
So I did mean what I said on the court.  I think Mr.Ellison is very generous with our sport.  I mean, he doesn't need to do so much, you know.  He doesn't need to, you know, kind of keep on investing and improving the facilities for us each year, but he does is.
He does it because he cares about the sport and cares about players, and we need more people like him definitely.  If this tournament has the potential to be one day the biggest one the world, it does, why not?  I don't see any reason why not.
I mean, we have Grand Slams and we have ATP tournaments, but there is no rule that is saying that the Grand Slams have to be eternally the biggest events in the world in our sport.
There is always the possibility that ATP kind of steps in and does something different, you know, in order to maybe get closer in terms of importance and value of the tournament like Grand Slams.
But that's all an open subject, of course.  We can't really predict what's happening, but of course respecting the history and tradition in Grand Slams.  For over 125 years they have been the four most prestigious events.  Everybody knows those events matter the most.
But ATP has grown so much in last 15, 20 years as our sport on a global scale, and so there is always a possibility to do something even more.

Q.  In your book last year, when you talked about your diet, you also talked some about eastern medicine and philosophy.  What exposure have you had to that, and what role does that play to your life?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, I think everybody here wants to be healthy, right?  So you're always trying to find the way to stay healthy, to, you know, learn more about medicine, I guess, basic conservative medicine and then alternative medicine, which is I think is a little bit put aside in the last few decades.
But in looking at all the documents that the eastern medicine, oldest medicine in the world, Chinese medicine goes over 5,000 years old, there are different ways of healing, of keeping your body fit, keeping your mind and soul aligned.
Everybody has a different way.  It's a very, I'd say wide spectrum of things to talk about when you mention medicine and alternative medicine, but it plays an important part in my life.
I have learned a lot of things, you know.  I don't say it's only, you know, the medications and classical medicine; it's not only alternative medicine.  The best is to find the balance between the two in the middle that kind of keeps you healthy.
But, again, in my life, I have witnessed and I have felt a change that has affected me positively on the court and in the private life, as well when changed my diet.  You know, that's one of my main interests in life, I would say, is well‑being, you know, trying to learn more about it.

Q.  You mentioned the book.  How well do you know Lauren Davis?  Her father?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Yeah, exactly.  I didn't know that it was her father, and then we spoke the other day.  Well, first of all, she's playing amazing.  She had an upset against ‑‑she played against Azarenka.  I think she made a great win.  Really glad for her.  She's a very nice, very nice girl.  We talked about her father for a little bit.
Of course, I'm very privileged to get a forward in my book from her father, because he had best sellers and healthy diets and gluten‑free and so forth.  He knows a lot about it.  I haven't met him personally yet.  I'm glad I have his forward.

Q.  It wasn't a tennis connection that brought you together?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  It wasn't a connection through his daughter.  It was some other way.

Q.  You're very regimented, and after a match you kind of go backstage and sign the balls for the kids.  Talk about kind of taking the time away from yourself and then giving it back in that way.  It takes away from what you're doing, but you're giving your time that way.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Well, my mindset about those things is very simple:  I respect and appreciate their presence.  They buy tickets to come and watch us.  The fans are most important.
You have to try to find any available time or energy to kind of give back and try to, you know, spend at least a little bit of a personal time with them.  You know, signing a autograph, taking a photograph is the least you can do.
There are many kids around here who love the sport, and I was‑‑ when I was a kid also I was looking up to all these great tennis players and I was watching a few of the tournaments live.  For me, that was an amazing experience.
I know how important it was and how much it made my day when I saw an important tennis player that I was looking up to.
I have been in that position, and that keeps me on the ground and trying to interact with them as much as I can.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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