Roland Garros

Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Paris, France

Casper Ruud

Press Conference

C. RUUD/K. Majchrzak

6-3, 6-2, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You're being talked up as a bit of a dark horse to win this or get far in the tournament. You've had a fantastic clay court run. Can you just talk about that. Do you feel any added pressure?

CASPER RUUD: Well, I mean, first of all, it's nice to get some recognition that you had a good clay court swing. I feel the same. I've won many matches. I've built a kind of clay court reputation for myself, I guess. I've been performing well many tournaments in a row this year. I think this is by far my best clay court season so far.

I think you build some respect in your opponents' minds maybe when you win a lot of matches. When people are facing Nadal on the clay court, many of them will already think they lost before going out on court because you know how tough it will be. If I can maybe achieve a small percentage of that kind of respect he has in every other players, I'm happy with that. I'm not sure if I've come to that point yet.

Yeah, you gain respect in your opponents' minds when you win a lot of matches. I feel like this year has been a little bit like this for me.

Q. Who do you put your confidence down to? Is it your father? What does he mean to you? Is he your friend, your confidant?

CASPER RUUD: Yeah, no, we have a very good relationship. Yeah, he's a coach. He's my father. Of course, a friend. We have fun on and off the court. He was a young father, and he's still a young father, I think. He's not 50 years old yet. I'm already 22.

I mean, we have a very, very good relationship. But also we respect each other. I put a lot of faith in listening to him when I grew up because I knew he was basically the only one in Norway who really knew what the life on tour was about, how you would have to train hard every day to kind of succeed.

But it's been going well. He taught me to stay focused and serious already from a young age, made me work the extra hours on the weekends. I have to thank him a lot for my small success so far. I hope he can be the coach for me for many more years.

Q. Obviously you have sisters as well. What do they make of your success?

CASPER RUUD: Well, I have two, yeah, younger sisters. The youngest one, she plays tennis. I think she dreams about maybe becoming a professional also one day. She started maybe a bit too late, in my opinion. But she's getting a lot better the last years. She's working hard.

I think she didn't enjoy the hard work a couple years ago, but now she's getting more into it, pushing herself very well. She's been training also at the Nadal academy for a couple years now. They push her well. She's getting more and more of that Spanish mentality. I think that's good.

My older one of my younger two-sisters, she's studying in Norway to become a nutritionist. She used to play handball, but she was too impatient to play tennis. She and my father would argue too much when they would try. It didn't work out for her. But she found her way in the end, I guess.

Q. What is your reception to your clay court success in Norway?

CASPER RUUD: Sorry, what does that mean?

Q. The media, the fans. Are you getting more press attention now in Norway or have you always had it?

CASPER RUUD: I think it's growing a little bit in the last years. I think the media pretty much writes about every match I play now. Didn't always do that. It's always easier to follow on the ATP Tour than maybe on the challenger or future tours. Is not easy to follow all the scores.

If you're interested in tennis, you'll be able to follow every result around the world. Now it's easier I guess for them also to follow up. They are writing.

I think, yeah, I'm getting even more coverage on TV. I think it's good for trying to make the sport grow in Norway. It's been a small sport compared to other sports in Norway. We dominate so much on the winter sports.

But now we are getting better at the outdoor and summer sports as well. I think tennis and golf had a large boost last year in Norway, a lot of new members, a lot of people wanting to take up the game or start the game to play. Golf and tennis had a very nice year during the pandemic last year, at least in Norway.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
108228-1-1063 2021-06-02 14:16:00 GMT

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