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August 12, 2019

Nick Kyrgios

Cincinnati, Ohio

N. KYRGIOS/L. Sonego

7-5, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How are you feeling after that win?
NICK KYRGIOS: I feel good. Obviously a win feels good all the time. I knew it was going to be tough. I was just talking about it. I feel like when guys play me they go out there and try and play their best level. They try and keep things on their racquet and red line.

You know, he was serving 130-plus the entire match on his first serve. He can definitely serve at a high level. You know, I just stayed tough. I kept holding my serve and just waiting till, you know, he kind of dropped his level a little bit. That's all it was. That's all that was in it.

Q. Do you think because you're such a unique player that you unlock something unique in opponents? They're sort of in your show-time mode you bring out that they can get themselves on that level too?
NICK KYRGIOS: I think they are just super excited to play me, honestly. I think they definitely want to beat me. Again, he was having a lot of fun out there. That point was awesome. And to see him having a lot of fun, I don't think that's a normal occasion for him in his matches.

I mean, it was a lot of fun. Could have gone either way in the first set, but I hung tough. Obviously had a bad line call and hung on to that for a couple of games but composed myself and got the job done.

Q. Do you like that players play up when they play against you?
NICK KYRGIOS: Honestly I wish they'd just roll over and it was a 6-1, 6-1 job (smiling). No, it's a lot of fun. They bring -- obviously just from that match I can see his strengths, his first serve and his forehand, looks to run around and dictate.

That's why he's had success on the clay, and obviously won that title on grass. I can see how with that serve honestly. I liked it. I think the strengths of all my opponents come out when they play me. That's pretty cool.

Q. How much did the crowd help you? That was a big crowd for that court.
NICK KYRGIOS: I think all my matches are like that, to be honest. Yeah, I mean, Cincy fans are awesome. I love playing here. This is one of my favorite tournaments of the year.

It's super. Things can be on your terms. The tournament gives you a car, and you can come in whenever you want. It's so laid back. And the fans are always so good. Yeah, it's awesome. I love this event.

Q. One thing you said in D.C. that struck me was when you were a kid, coaches and teachers told you you wouldn't grow up to be a good player. Do you feel like that's why you're so good with kids now at these tournaments, whether you're putting your hand up for a clinic, playing Ping-Pong in D.C. with them? You're just always up to sign an autograph.
NICK KYRGIOS: I wouldn't say it's down to that. I have always been pretty nice to, I feel, generally to people and to kids. I have been doing kids clinics for Tennis Australia when I was young.

I was just brought up like that, to be honest. I don't care if you're a CEO of a company or a janitor. I'm going to speak to you the same way. I love doing -- I think that's what it's about. It's about giving kids belief that they can be in this position one day.

Q. Khachanov next. He's been playing better and better. What do you expect from that match?
NICK KYRGIOS: He's an amazing player. So young. We played juniors together. He's had an amazing career so far, and he's going to be one of the best players in the world for a long time. He plays super-aggressive. Unbelievable first serve. Great forehand. He's a big guy, as well. Moves well.

I'm going to try to keep things on my own terms, but again, I'm not going to think about it. I have some doubles tomorrow with the birthday boy. See how it goes.

Q. Speaking of Stefanos, you took a plane ride with him and Medvedev? Some things have been on Twitter...
NICK KYRGIOS: I don't even know that.

Q. What was that like?
NICK KYRGIOS: On the private jet? I mean, it was fine. I don't know. It's all right. I think that little run-in they had, was it last year, I think that's well behind them. It's probably good they don't think about that anymore, because they're going to see each other a lot more times, going to see each other probably for the next 15 years. They only get to see me for the next three or four years, but, I mean, they're gonna see each other a long time. I think they should get over it. I think they're fine.

Q. What did you get Stefanos for his birthday?
NICK KYRGIOS: I actually didn't get him a present. I didn't know until I saw it on Twitter this morning, but I don't know. I might get him something small tomorrow, maybe a shoelace or something (smiling).

Q. There was a point in that second set where you paused to take a look at the replay. What did you think of the point?
NICK KYRGIOS: Yeah, it was a good point. I would have liked to have won it. But, yeah, it was awesome. The fans loved it. The court went nuts after that point, and I think that's what it's all about. Probably the most entertaining point they saw today.

Q. You are adding a bit of a twist to this new modern-day tennis. How do you feel about this with your performance, your expression, your excitement on the court? How do you feel about that?
NICK KYRGIOS: I think it's very important. You know, I think people are so concerned about keeping fans in the game, but I personally believe it's about bringing in a whole new different fan base to the game.

I think you look at the American sports like NBA, NFL, I mean, so exciting. I think they do it the right way, and I'm just trying to bring new fans to the sport. That's one of my goals, actually, and I really want, you know, tennis to grow. I think there is so much potential for it to grow.

I look at all the young players coming up, Tsitsipas, Felix, these guys, they all have different personalities. I think if the higher-up people in tennis market them the right way and we play the entertaining tennis we do, I think tennis can become pretty cool.

Q. You said you like to play here. If you could design the perfect court, perfect stadium, where would it be? What surface would it have? What color?
NICK KYRGIOS: Well, I think it would be a team event, definitely. I think the way Laver Cup is, the way ATP Cup is going to be, I think that's what tennis needs moving forward. I think it's unbelievable, that concept to play in a team, and I think it's way more exciting for the fans to watch. I think it's easier to follow a team, as well.

Surface-wise I think hard court or grass court would be nice. Ben knows there are way too many clay court events. Yeah, I think hard court or grass court. Team events, I think, are what's needed.

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