Roland Garros

Friday, 28 May 2021

Paris, France

Daniil Medvedev

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You have played a lot this year, traveled around a lot. What's your experience been like traveling around the world in the time of the pandemic and being on the tour in the pandemic? Obviously it was a little crazy in Australia, a little different, or maybe not at other tournaments. Can you tell us what your experience has been like in different places?

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, it's actually very controversial, because a few times I have been in Moscow, people are living without mask, everything is open, like nightclubs and everything, and then you come somewhere in Europe and it was full, how do you call it, full quarantine, like no restaurants open, can't go out if you don't go to work. It's controversial. Every country has its different rules. Australia if you come you have 14-day quarantine.

As you say, this experience was controversial, because depends what you believe in, depends what you think about all this, depends what you see.

So, yeah, I was just trying my best to get used to the situation, because as you say, you know, you come to Australia you need to be ready to just do your best. Of course it's a little bit of a rule if you go to hard quarantine or not and then it's going to be tougher. I was lucky not to be there. I managed to play a good tournament.

Same, yeah, about every country, every tournament. Some were we can go out right now, some were not. Just need to get used to and do your best on the tennis court.

Q. You don't have a very good record at Roland Garros. You know that. Everyone knows that. But do you feel like you can play your natural game on clay yet? Do you feel like you can just step out and do what you want to do?

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, I have to say coming here was my first practice yesterday, I was playing amazing so far. I feel like, I don't know if maybe the balls change or it's the conditions, because last year we had these Wilson balls which are supposed to suit me, but it was like 5 degrees when I played my match so I had almost no chance to do anything against a great player like Fucsovics.

So far I have been playing amazing. I could play -- I mean, I didn't feel that it was clay. I was playing like on hard courts, and hopefully, I mean, have some expectations. Most important is to play good, have a player that also doesn't like clay, but again, he will like the conditions here. Yeah, I really like the conditions here so far, and looking forward to make a great tournament, to be honest.

Q. You obviously worked really, really hard to get to No. 2 in the world, having a lot of success over the last 12 months. Do you think it's right that you are seeded 2 for Roland Garros given that you have not had the results as successful on the clay and you're fairly open generally about the fact you don't like the surface?

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, I mean, that's the rules. You know, when the rules are changing, usually it's, I mean, how it's done in sports, it's like they are gonna say, okay, we change the rules from 2024 or '23, because yeah, that's what Wimbledon does.

I don't know actually how I'm going to be seeded in Wimbledon because even if I like grass I didn't do so amazing on grass courts last few years.

Same about clay. If they would have some special rules, for sure I would be seeded less higher, but if we take the rankings, I'm No. 2 so I have to be seeded No. 2. And actually except Wimbledon, there is no other tournament in the world where I would not be seeded 2.

So it is how it is. As I say, it helps me. Even if we don't talk about me making it to the semis yet, but as I said, I feel really great with the conditions here and I feel like I can play on hard courts, and that's the most important.

Q. I'm asking players about what it's like being in the zone. Is that something that you experience sometimes? I wonder how do you get yourself into the zone?

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, I think of course it's very important for every tennis player, and for everybody, you know, the zone is different. For somebody the zone is to win 20 Grand Slams. For somebody is to maybe make quarters on ATP 250, which everybody has their own limits.

For me being in the zone is basically means not missing the ball, because that's where I'm strong. That's when I know that, for my opponents, it's going to be tough to win me. So even of course sometimes they succeed, sometimes the best ones, sometimes not or when they play good. But it makes it tougher for my opponent.

So for me being in the zone is to not miss a ball as easy as that. To get there is a question that I don't think anybody has an answer. For me it's to just practice hard, try to make the routine good, not make stupid decisions outside of the court, and then like this, the zone will come on the court one day.

Q. I wanted to ask you about Naomi Osaka's decision to not speak to the press during the French Open. I'm wondering in general what you think of that and also the way she framed it as having to do with athletes' mental health and whether you have found yourself in difficulty after a loss having to explain and answer our questions about that defeat.

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Yeah, of course, I mean, first of all, me in life it's quite easy. I think I respect everybody's opinion. Doesn't mean that I have to agree with their opinion. Doesn't matter if it's Benoit Paire, Naomi Osaka, or Nick Kyrgios. I want to say, I understand why she does it. I respect her opinion.

Talking about myself, of course I had tough moments in my career, talking about you guys, so media after the matches and before the matches, I don't think I have experienced problems. Like I don't see any journalist like trying to go at me, you know.

Of course we know, for example, I don't win a lot on clay and I can get crazy. But I didn't have really one journalist, like, saying, Okay, you shouldn't do this or that, because that's when I'm going to get crazy, I'm going to say, You cannot tell this to me.

I didn't experience that. There is a lot of hate of course on social media, especially tennis players, probably because of betting and stuff. So that's where I feel that's one of the parts, because I need to be honest, I don't use my social media as much, especially as soon as I became popular.

But, yeah, again, talking about journalist, me, I have no problems. I try always to come to press conference bad mood or good mood. And I feel like even sometimes in the bad mood I can be in a better mood after talking to you guys.

Q. I watched you play UTS last week. Looked like you had a lot of fun. I know it's very different to playing tournaments and being, you know, playing on the regular tour, but did that help you feel more comfortable coming to Roland Garros?

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: The tournament itself, no, to be honest, because I didn't play good as I wanted there. But again, as I say, I didn't feel good coming here to Roland Garros, and I played maybe four hours on the court. I feel amazing. I feel happy about life. I feel happy about tennis. First time in two months. So that's just great feeling.

Doesn't matter if I lose first round or if I lose final. It's about feeling on the court, and now I have it good.

Talking about UTS itself, I like the tournament. I don't think they want to make war with anybody, at least yet. So, so far it was just a great, you know, two-day tournament against great players where you prepare for Roland Garros. Of course you don't play five-set matches there, but you know you get this practice 45 minutes, competitive minutes, semis, final, pool. I found everything good about this tournament. Just was unhappy with my tennis and with my result (smiling).

Q. Rafa just got his own monument and no doubt there will be a Daniil Medvedev monument one day. Where would you like to have it?

DANIIL MEDVEDEV: Oh, in Russia. That's an easy answer, because that's my home country, and of course if I manage to do something amazing on the court -- and when I say "amazing," I find that yet I haven't done anything to have a monument, so I need to do better. Then, yeah, would be really proud if somewhere in Russia, of course better in Moscow but tougher in Moscow, there is going to be a monument of Daniil Medvedev.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
107940-1-1063 2021-05-28 11:50:00 GMT

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