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Novak Djokovic, The Artois Championships, June 12, 2008

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June 12, 2008


Novak Djokovic


N. DJOKOVIC/J. Tipsarevic

2-6, 6-1, 6-3


Q. You were a set and a
break down. How did you
manage to turn things around

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, as you
could see, it was a
difficult - mentally - match
for both of us. We never
played each other. I think
this fact had a role in
today's match. I was maybe
thinking about some things
more than I should pay
attention on the match.
Resulted with a really,
really bad performance in
the first set. Then I was
lucky - lucky enough to get
that break in the second
set. And from that point on,
I think I played really
well. I served very well. So
it's good.

Q. Lleyton Hewitt next
for you. You have a history
with him.

played a couple of times. We
played on grass last year.
It was a great match, a
marathon match, really long.

He's I think -- even though
he's not on top of his
shape, he's not playing like
maybe he played before, but
he's still a great player
and he still is one of the
toughest player to play
against on this surface. He
feels great here, won
Wimbledon, ex No. 1, won
Queen's a couple of times.
He has all the success in
his history book.

I wouldn't give myself a
role of the favorite, even
though I'm third player of
the world.

Q. How do you feel about
your prospects going into
Wimbledon this year? Do you
feel as good as you did this
year or better?

feel better. I feel better
because it's quite
different, you know, coming
as a Grand Slam champion
into the grass court season,
winner of a couple major
events. I've been playing
really well, being very
consistent with my results.
So I'm really looking
forward to Wimbledon.

Q. Do you think of the
field as more open this year
than the last few years?

so. Nadal showed his quality
in the last two years in
Wimbledon. He's getting
closer and closer. He's a
big favorite this year, I
would say.

Roger, of course, is still
best player in the world.
He's coming to the Wimbledon
as the biggest favorite to
win it again, of course. All
credit to that. But, again,
we have to admit that the
things have changed a little
bit. He's losing more than
he used to. He's not so
dominant. So it can be a key
factor in the Wimbledon.

Q. Every player has been
slipping on the grass.
Murray said it was very
slippery. Nadal skidded with
his feet under the net and
lost a point. You seemed to
have a nice line, rolling
over and getting up. Have
you been watching Boris
Becker, who used to be
famous for that?

not exactly paying attention
to Boris. But, of course,
he's one of the best grass
court players ever.

The goal is for everybody I
think to be careful in the
start of the grass court
season, especially for the
ones who did well in Roland
Garros and played many weeks
in the slowest surface, then
having this transition in
such a short period of the
time, it's really difficult
to get used to the surface.
It's very slippery,
especially now when there
was sunset and it gets
darker, the court gets wet.

I think I've been moving
pretty well. I've been very
cautious, though. Hopefully
I will not, you know, have
any injuries or something
like that.

Q. What do you feel you
have to do to win Wimbledon?

been working on some things
lately. The good thing for
me is that the grass is
slower than it used to be.
Baseline players have more
success, which is going in
my favor. I've been playing
pretty well in last two
years. Last year I played
semifinals. I was
unfortunate, though, with

I need to serve well. I need
to rely on that segment of
my game. If I'm serving
well, then all the things
are going much better for
me. So I just need to be
myself, being aggressive.

But it's two weeks long.
It's a long tournament, long
event. So mentally you just
have to be focused.

Q. You could meet Nadal
here in the final or Nadal
in the semifinal or final of
Wimbledon. Would you rather
have the experience of
playing him here first or
would you rather go into
Wimbledon with him knowing
less about how you're

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It's still a
long way to here and
Wimbledon, of course. I
understand what you mean.

Probably I would like him to
play one time before
Wimbledon, of course, to see
how is it, are some things
changing from last year or
is it different to play him
on this surface? It
certainly is, you know. I
think everybody believes
they have more chances, and
I believe I have more
chances against him on
grass. Still, he is a great
player. He played two times
Wimbledon final, but he's
not that dominant as he is
on clay.

Q. You mentioned when you
came in about you were
thinking about all the
things during the first set.
Is that because it's so
tough playing against a good

probably. But it's very
difficult. I'm emotional
player. We know each other
for a long time. So we've
been hanging out before the
matches, and probably this
is not a good thing, when
you play against somebody
that day. But we've been
spending a lot of time

We have a good friendship.
Obviously I wasn't accepting
the official match, the
importance of the match,
that serious. He used it
wisely. He was returning
well. But I made all the
unforced errors.

Q. How much does it
bother you playing in the
conditions you were playing
in today: cold, late,
half-full stands? Does it
bother you?

this is all part of the
sport. You have to get used
to it. This is, as I said,
part of the sport. Every
player has to go through
these moments. You cannot
always have a full stands,
of course - only unless
you're Federer.

Yeah, we'd been waiting all
day. Probably this was one
of the factors that was very
bad for us because, you
know, we were waiting for
all day, then we got to the
court and we were not fresh,
not moving well, especially
in my case.

But you just have to accept
it the way it is.

Q. Are you still able to
enjoy a match like that?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I'm enjoying
grass. You don't get so much
opportunities to play on
this surface. You get only a
month a year, one or two
tournaments, depending on
your schedule. This is the
surface that this sport was
brought up on. The sport was
invented in this country. So
it's good to be here with
all this tradition, people
caring about this sport. So
it's nice.

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