Australian Open

Saturday, 21 January 2023

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Andrey Rublev

Press Conference

A. RUBLEV/D. Evans

6-4, 6-2, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference of Andrey Rublev.

Congratulations. Very solid performance today. How would you rate your performance? Are you happy with what you accomplished?

ANDREY RUBLEV: Yeah, I'm happy with my game today, especially because last time I lost him in straight sets, so I took the revenge. I'm really happy -- I mean, the first set wasn't amazing, but was not that bad. I was just serving well, but I was not doing something special.

As soon as I was able to win the first set, I start to feel a relief. I start to feel more confident. I start to feel I can go for extra speed to raise a level.

As soon as I did it, I started to feel even more confident, because I started to feel that this game, he cannot control. He was not able to do something. He start to stress more and I started to feel it. In the end, I start to play better and better and end up playing on a good level.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I'm just wondering if somebody looked at the scorelines of your matches, they'll see you only dropped one set so far this week, so it kind of looks easy. I'm betting that's not how you feel. Can you just say how you've been feeling over the whole week? Also, what are you doing with your time off?

ANDREY RUBLEV: Actually, this week match by match I'm playing better. I'm feeling better, which is good. Game-wise, physical-wise I'm feeling also good because, yeah, the beginning of the season wasn't good. I lost two matches against two players straightaway, and when I arrive here, I lost a bit confidence. So I didn't know how it's gonna be.

Match by match, I start to feel again that I'm playing really good, so that's a good thing.

On time off. Nothing. I'm coming here, practicing. Of course obviously I'm trying to sleep a bit later to use a day off to sleep more. Then I come here, practice, do a treatment, come back and dinner.

So easy. Nothing special.

Q. Dan has just been in, and he told us he only gave you a banana because he likes you so much. He's your good friend. How much did it surprise you to get that? How much did it help you?

ANDREY RUBLEV: I mean, it was just, I think it was just a fun moment (smiling).

Obviously even if he wouldn't give it to me, if he wouldn't share the banana with me, obviously I will have banana anyway because the ball boy will bring it to me. But it was a fun moment. In the end, even you ask about this question. It was just a nice and fun moment between us.

Like he said and you said, we have a great relationship between each other. We played great matches. I think we played quite a lot already, and he win some matches and I win some matches. Yeah, but I won the last one now (smiling). Next time he will need to take revenge.

Q. Obviously there has been a lot made of all the seeds that have been eliminated already. I think 4 of the top 10 and a lot more in the teens as well. Are you looking at this as a real opportunity to make a real dent in this tournament?

ANDREY RUBLEV: No, to be honest, not at all. I feel a bit, I don't know, just not thinking, I don't know, just match by match, because there were some moments before when I feel there is opportunity to go to semis or even final maybe, and in the end, nothing happen.

So this time I just don't want to even try to think about opportunity or something. I have next match, and I will try to do my best. If not, nothing happen, I go home, practice and prepare for the next tournaments. It's just beginning of the season.

Q. On your next match, Holger Rune has just won, and you played him in Paris a few months ago. What are your thoughts about that?

ANDREY RUBLEV: He's a young guy, super talented. He have nothing to lose for the moment, because he was just, yeah, going from underdog position all the time.

But this year, we'll see. It's going to be challenging for him, and I have nothing to lose against him next time, because he was the one who won our first match, so he will feel a bit pressure that he would like to win again.

So I just need to go there, to do my best, and we'll see. In the end, nothing change if you lose to one player once or twice.

Q. You've gotten really good at getting through these first weeks of Grand Slams. Do you think a lot about and have you come up with the answers yet for yourself about what you know it will take for you to get beyond the quarterfinals, to get to the deepest part where obviously everyone knows you desperately want to get to?

ANDREY RUBLEV: It's easy, and I think it's obvious, it's mental part. That's it. Because the game-wise, I think I have a good game to fight against top players, to play and compete.

But the mental part most of the times is stopping me. Sometimes I want it too badly, and then I cannot control myself. In the end, at this level it's all about mental. The top players, they are better at the moment in these thing.

Q. Have you ever had an opponent share something to eat with you before? Have you ever given an opponent something?

ANDREY RUBLEV: I mean, depends. In my head, nothing is coming right now. I mean, most of the times normally you have everything on court. And maybe then to pass a bottle if you are in reach and your opponent is there, yeah, it happens. Even myself I was giving someone water or the other guy, so it happens often.

But, I don't know, normally you have everything on court, so... It was the first time.

Q. The ATP and TV always use you in their social media clips, the quirky, funny ones. Are you the kind of main prankster or joker in the locker room?

ANDREY RUBLEV: In the locker room, no, for sure. But yeah, I guess sometimes I feeling boring with the ATP, with some of the games that they are doing. So I'm behaving sometimes not maybe nice or something, and in the end they use it in a funny way. In the end, everyone is laughing. That's the most important thing.

That's I think the main, yeah, if the people enjoying, and they feel that is entertainment, so in the end, that's what we are looking for. Because in the end, every player, I mean, there is always basic questions, so every player answer the same way in the same way, and sometimes, even for myself, it starts to be a bit boring, every week the same questions, the same questions, and everybody answering the same way. So sometimes you just answer in a different way just to, I don't know, to put a coin.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
128658-1-1063 2023-01-21 05:13:00 GMT

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