November 20, 2020
London, England, UK
6-7, 6-3, 10-8
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Seem to be a lot of very nervy matches in the doubles. The fact that you are all so close in points and there is the No. 1 team up for grabs, is that kind of making it even more tense than it would normally be?
BRUNO SOARES: Yeah. Can you see the amount of white hair that I have? Those matches? (Smiling.)
Yeah, I think doubles, it's always been extremely fun to watch here. As a player playing those matches, it's nerve-racking, but as a doubles fan, like I am, it's been extremely fun to watch.
This year was incredible. I have never seen that many doubles matches over two hours. So many breakers, so many close points, so much drama. And that's nice.
I mean, the score format that we play brings out the extra tension. Gets to a point of the match that literally every point counts.
We had three of these already, and I'm hoping for qualification and easier days to come (smiling).
Q. We heard the news yesterday that you're joining back with Jamie Murray as a doubles partner.
BRUNO SOARES: Yes.
Q. Can you tell us how that came about and why that came about?
BRUNO SOARES: Well, yeah. Mate came to me the end of last week and decided that he wanted to split and he had different plans for 2021. Jamie found out the news. Came to talk to me, my plans. To be honest, I didn't really have any plans because I was trying to focus, you know, on the tournament here, pretty big one.
But again, I have to at one point look for a partner. It seemed to me a great idea. I really like Jamie as a person, as a player. We had a lot of success together.
I think we both are more experienced, more mature now. I'm really looking forward for next year.
Q. On that point, you kind of mentioned you both learned a lot from your experiences with different partners. How do you think that will kind of help you coming back together? What would you do differently that perhaps was not working at the end of your time with Jamie when you guys split before?
BRUNO SOARES: Well, I think at the end it's a little bit of -- I mean, it's like a marriage, you know. At the end, sometimes just a routine and it just gets to you, and I think at the end was then.
I think Jamie needed a change at that moment. I appreciate him because he was always very honest about it, and when he came and talked to me, I completely understood. I think for me, first thing, you've got to be happy on court, and if you're not really feeling happy you have got to do something to be happy. He felt that the change was necessary.
We're still playing great tennis. I think right now, I think it's not the experience with different partners. I think it's just time. You mature, you play better, keep improving.
I think Jamie improved a lot since we played, which is good. I don't know if I improved a lot. I'm getting older, so he's going to have to come with the youth, which he's not that young anymore.
But I think one advantage that we have, it's with a lot of teams changing for next season. Me and Jamie, we're not really a change. We know each other extremely well, and I don't think it's going to take long for us to click. So I think this is something positive on our side and makes us even more competitive.
Q. Same subject. Obviously you won two Grand Slam titles with Jamie before.
BRUNO SOARES: Yeah.
Q. Do you feel like you can win more slam titles? I presume you do or you wouldn't be getting back together.
BRUNO SOARES: Exactly that. You answered and you replied.
Yeah, that's what we all play for. I think for me the moment that I feel that I'm going to those tournaments without a chance to win it, I think it's the moment I feel I have to retire.
You know, I love the sport, I love competing, and I love winning. You know, we dream about winning those tournaments as a kid, and that's what I want to keep on trying to do.
I think me and Jamie, we have done that before, so I really trust we can do it again. Like I said, once I have the feeling I'm not there with a chance to win those tournaments, I think it's time for me to rethink about my career.
Q. A lot of people who maybe don't follow tennis so much may be surprised that you're the pair that's currently top of the world, World No. 1 in the team rankings, won the US Open, reached the French Open final, people are kind of surprised that you would split up. Can you sort of explain how that came about? Why exactly Pavic didn't want to play with you anymore?
BRUNO SOARES: Yeah. I am surprised, as everyone else (smiling). I wasn't expecting that at all.
I mean, I guess he wanted to play with Mektic. They are very good friends, both from the same country, there is Olympics coming.
I don't know. I don't know. To be honest, when he came to talk to me, I was a bit disappointed. I told him, and I didn't want to kept on the conversation. So I said, Okay, if you want to do that after the year that we had, go ahead.
I don't know if he had that before in his head and then the results just kept on not going in his favor to make a move like that and that came to a point that he had to do it, but, yeah, I was very surprised. But like I said, you've got to respect everyone thinks different, and you've got to understand.
I was a little bit sad for me after having such a great year. Like you said, fighting for No. 1, being the best team after the break.
But life goes on. You know, there is nothing I can do right now other than work hard and keep trying to do my thing.
Q. Can I just clarify the exact date that you and Jamie verbally agreed to come together? And I presume you're full steam ahead to Australia for the chaotic Down Under Tour, really? Is that the plan as soon as you get together?
BRUNO SOARES: Yeah, well, that's a tough question. I'm not very good with my memory. Exact dates, not sure. Sometime last week. Thursday, Friday maybe? Really sorry. Don't know exactly. But somewhere late last week.
Yeah, the plan is of course starting in Australia. We are still waiting on Tennis Australia and the government to decide the calendar. Only thing we can do is our preseason.
Right now we have a date. We know that not getting to Australia before January 1st, so, I mean, kind of get back to normal. That's what we do.
We do a full preseason and travel on the 27th, 28th, and play the summer there. I mean, we're hoping to be able to play tournament in the first two weeks in a bubble or in a controlled environment, whatever the government decide.
But still waiting for them to give us the calendar to make a precise plan for what we're playing. Yeah, plan is to start at full steam whatever the tour is.
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