Roland Garros

Monday, 30 May 2022

Paris, France

Stefanos Tsitsipas

Press Conference

H. RUNE/S. Tsitsipas

7-5, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Bad luck Stefanos, what do you think worked particularly well for Holger today?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Great match from his side, but I have to say it was a very bad management from far back from the court from my side. I don't know, it was as if I was missing too many returns, giving away too many free points without really giving a chance to myself to compete a little bit.

I was a completely different player once I stepped into the court, taking returns early. I really feel it's one of those matches where every match would be a lot different after this point.

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English?

Q. Those things that you said about the match that you were dissatisfied with today, is there any sort of overriding factor that you can attribute that to? Are you physically okay today, did you wake up feeling okay?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Physically perfect, fine, absolutely okay. Waking up, couldn't be better. I was struggling a lot the last couple of days in terms of finding my rhythm. I was very nervous on the court, being frustrated a lot. And I knew I was this way, but I couldn't stop being like this.

Especially when you feel like there have been a few changes in terms of equipment and stuff like that. But I wouldn't attribute that to the equipment, I wouldn't put the all of the blame to the equipment because it's something that I chose for my personal progress and getting better.

So I would say that returning closer again brought my level of tennis to a complete different dimension than what I was before. I think we could see that in the last two service games of his that I was really able to apply a lot of pressure and it was a day and night pretty much that transformation.

I was just, you know, didn't have my mind completely there when I had to make those changes. It came way too late on that match, way too late, like at this time you could just go to sleep, I mean, it's too late.

Q. Since the beginning of the tournament you had a lot of ups and downs, did you feel pressure because you were alone, you were in the second part of the draw and you were the favorite to go to the final?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Absolutely not. I don't watch draws, I don't watch my next opponents. I pretty much know the progress and the way I need to do things in order to get to where I was last year and that doesn't come easy, for sure.

But for sure you've kind of experienced it before and you know what is required for you to have a high chance and have a high stake of making it back to the final.

Of course I knew I'm going to have to play difficult opponents that know how to play on this surface, but mentally, physically, tennis-wise, I felt good.

It's just that I had a few troubles in practice. Again, back to frustration, back to not understanding certain things and certain patterns that I was trying to impose. You know, you do have this in the back of your head, having kind of changed a little bit of that equipment, playing with something that has helped you a lot last year get to a pretty good result, finals for the first time, it kind of stays back in your head that maybe I shouldn't have had done that.

But no blame there, I think it actually helps me and I just hope it serves its purpose and the way I want it to be in the next couple of weeks, because I want to get as many points as possible.

Q. What can you say about his emotional capacity of handling this situation. Did you expect until the end that he would crack a little bit?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well he's young, he plays with a lot of emotion. One-of-a-kind of an opponent I would say. Like, very emotional opponent, always seems like something's bothering him when he plays. Actually that's how I saw it.

It's kind of strange, I don't get to face that very often from someone. But then suddenly like seems to be playing amazing, which is a good thing, of course.

He is a very emotional player, he can play great, he absolutely deserves this victory, played better, faced crucial tough moments better. But I can see something different next time with this opponent. I'm pretty convinced I can do way better.

This is not where I've maxed out, let's say. I didn't give myself the opportunity to max out. It's not that he didn't give me, I didn't give myself the opportunity to go all the way and that is a shame.

Q. Just on that, did that sort of outlook and the way that he played, did that contribute to you as you said earlier kind of losing your rhythm as well? Were you surprised by that and the way, the emotional way that he played and so forth?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Well, look, it's simple. Like I think it's difficult to deny that I was trying to return from really far back on his serves. He serves good, but he's not John Isner.

But again, psychologically that really drowned me. Once I missed a few or wasn't making it deep enough, he kind of found that pattern and was reading it really well, executing some, being able to bring out some good shots and feeling comfortable.

I mean there was nothing he should be bothered, he should feel that bothers him when things like this come pretty easy, I guess, from my side. I wasn't really applying a lot of pressure, it was ridiculous at a point.

And again I was stubborn, I was stubborn to change it, I didn't want to change because it has helped me before, it has brought good results. But again, like I need to adjust way quicker, it's too late for this stuff.

Q. I'm wondering what your plans are for the next few weeks and when you talk about you've put a lot of emphasis on winning points, is that any reference to Wimbledon and your plans for Wimbledon?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Yeah, my plans are to play as many grass court tournaments as possible before Wimbledon. I did the mistake to not play enough before Wimbledon, I came straight from here to Wimbledon and played my first match there on grass, which was not the best thing to do.

So I think I can be good on grass, I've had good results on grass, not so much in my professional career but my junior career. Doesn't mean anything, but I can see like my game fitting with that surface and giving me the opportunity to generate good tennis to score points there.

Q. You talk about emotional things on Rune. What about his technical things, what he did very well on court, what he is able to do which about his performance, incredible performance he has?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: He has a great backhand. Down the line, I don't know if you saw that, very consistent, very precise, not far from the line.

But he gets tight. You could, I mean, when he gets down, he has his forehand a very extreme grip. I don't know about, anyway, he, he's a grinder.

Q. I was just wondering if you could clarify the equipment change you're talking about, is that the racquet or strings?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I would prefer not to talk about it, please. I don't want to answer that. Thank you.

Q. A couple of your losses on clay this season have been Alcaraz and now Rune. I'm just wondering what it's like for you losing to these younger players coming through when not long ago you were in that position yourself. How much motivation do you get to sort of prove yourself against younger players?

STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I mean it has to come at some point, it came for everyone, right? I'm not worried. I know my tennis, I know my game.

These kids are going to want to beat me badly because obviously they are chasing. I'm chasing too, but I'm at a different kind of position than they are. I'm hungry to beat them too. Now that they have beat me I want pay back.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
121057-2-1044 2022-05-30 16:09:00 GMT

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