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March 9, 2014

Grigor Dimitrov


6‑4, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  How much has Acapulco raised your expectation level?  What's it done for you?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Again, expectations, you know, it's a very strong word.  I think I'm going to say expectations, but I'm pretty confident.  Obviously it was a great week for me.  I'm happy with that win, really happy with that win.
It's a new tournament, new adventure.  Everything is under control for now.  I'm playing good tennis.  I think that's the most important thing for me at the moment.

Q.  How surprised were you that you came through those three matches against very good players and you were in tough positions, and the physical and mental demands?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I wasn't really surprised, because physically and mentally I thought I was ready, so winning every match ‑ and of course they were very tough matches; I'm not going to hide that ‑ but I was just feeling good, you know, feeling good and been working a lot the previous weeks.
I love the conditions out there, and I just enjoy the tournament.  In the same time, you know, I think I produced one of my best tennis so far.
Of course, you know, beating good players, and especially Andy in the semifinal, was a big win for me.  But, again, it wasn't something that I didn't expect or something.  My ultimate goal is when I come on court to win, not just to do my best.
Of course I wouldn't have been disappointed if I would have lost that match, but just fighting throughout whatever I had during the day.  You know, it was tough conditions, late matches all the time, so it was something I had to deal with and incorporate the best way possible.
(Djokovic joins Grigor on the dais.)
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Let's talk.  My friend Grigor here, best looking guy on the tour.  You don't need to talk about tennis too much.  You had so much success this year, let's talk about your looks.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  What do you want to know?  (Laughter.)
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  I'll let you be.  Take care.  I was just listening to your interview.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  You can listen from there.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC:  Can I ask you a question?  What is your favorite Sugarpova candy?

Q.  What do you think about Novak Djokovic as a player?  As a person, too?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  You can see that.  No, he's a great ‑‑first of all, he's a great guy off the court.  We have a great relationship.  We can speak a little bit of the same language.
Obviously we had a lot of battles so far, and hopefully there are many more that we want to come.
But, I mean, he's just a tremendous competitor, we all know, and he has proven so much.
I mean, slams and all that, there is not much else you can say about a great player like him.

Q.  Has what you expect of yourself changed in the past few weeks?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  What have changed?

Q.  Has what you expect of yourself changed in the last few weeks?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I mean, obviously I expected a lot from myself coming into every match.  I wanted to do good.  I wanted to play good.  I wanted to produce good shots.
But I still haven't found that I have came on court and I've played a really good match, which is kind of good.  If you win matches like that and you don't feel 100%, it's a good thing.
But as I said, there is a lot of work to be done, and now that I have a few good weeks coming ahead to play, I'm just excited to get on court and play my tennis.

Q.  But big picture, have you been able to see maybe some light in the tunnel that you weren't able to see before?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I think obviously physically I was not on a good level before, and I knew that.
I had problems with sometimes closing out the matches or I was always dropping when I shouldn't.  It was just there was a lot of little details that definitely has changed.  I believe and I feel in my game, but I think I can sort of look at the big picture when I get time off and actually can sit down with Roger and go through everything and see what we have so far.

Q.  Maria made some comments saying a couple days ago ‑‑ she says men should play best of three at slams.  Wondered what you think of that idea.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  We should all vote for that.  I don't know.  You always gonna have people that will agree and others that will disagree.  That's just something that eventually, I guess we'll find out.

Q.  I wonder, you personally as a player...
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I don't mind either way.  But, you know, it's really up to the players.

Q.  What is the state of tennis in Bulgaria today?  How do you see it?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  That's a good question.  I left Bulgaria really early, so I don't think I'm in the best position to judge what has been going on out there.  From what I hear, it's just the tennis clubs are full of players right now.
I mean, obviously a lot of kids are coming over.  I think the success of me and the Bulgarian players, Pironkova.  It's true that we brought up a lot to the country and to tennis itself.
But, I mean, I don't know how it's going to be in the near future.  I haven't had a chance to have a close look at it.  Hopefully I'm going to probably go home and have a few days to, you know, just to be home, relax a little bit.
But in the same time, I can actually see how things are from outside.

Q.  Do you know any of the Maleevas, and are you surprised that Mrs.Maleeva could produce three daughters who all made the top 10 out of Bulgaria?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I know them all extremely very well.  Actually, they have been helping me with their facilities, and one of the sisters has been one of my mentors since I was 12 years old.
So he's a guy that obviously I know.  I know the whole family very well, so all I can say is just hats off in front of that family and what they have produced throughout all the years and what they have achieved.  Also for Bulgarian standards, it's pretty cool.

Q.  Thoughts on playing Gulbis?  Third time in about a month.  Pretty unusual.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Yeah, well, it happens, obviously.
Gulbis, we all know how he plays; we all know how I play.  We are not going to have any hidden ways when we come on court.  So it's going to be us two out there, great battle, and hopefully we can produce some great tennis.

Q.  Do you like talking about Maria, like in press conferences?  She seems to be more open about talking about you.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Why?  Did she say something?  (Laughter.)

Q.  Read the transcript.  No, she was talking about you in her last press conference.  She seems to be more open about talking about you guys.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  Did she?  I don't know.

Q.  Do you like that?  Do you like to...
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I prefer to keep my life in private, but if you ask me, I will see if I'm going to answer or not.

Q.  So what did Roger Federer tell you off court the other day?  Did he give you...

Q.  Like advice or something.

Q.  Practicing, maybe.
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  We were practicing.

Q.  Did you talk?

Q.  Did he give you advice?  Something like this?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  I think we haven't reached that level with the advice thing.  Just been cool with each other, and obviously it's a lot of fun playing with him, and then practicing.
I must say, we had fun on court, and in the same time, we were great.  I mean, we played a bit of tennis and just laughing, a bit of the racquets.  Plus I have, you know, coaches, two coaches in the face of Stefan Edberg and Roger Rasheed that, you don't want to muck around when they are around.  It's a pretty respectful field when they are on court.

Q.  Is he okay when they called you Baby Fed now?
GRIGOR DIMITROV:  We never opened that subject.  I'd rather keep it that way.  Yeah.

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