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Stefanos Tsitsipas SF interview

  • lost to Rafael Nadal 2-6 4-6 0-6

Q. You said before the match you thought you learned a lot about his game from the final in Toronto. Does it feel to you like he's playing a different style of tennis now?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: For sure. For sure he does. I mean, yeah, definitely.

Q. What's changed?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: His aggression and his serve.

Q. Do you still feel like the most happy man in the world? What is the most important takeaway from this match for you?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Honestly, I have no idea what I can take from that match. It's not that I was even close to get to something. I only got six games from that match.

I don't know, I feel very strange. I feel happy with my performance in this tournament, but at the same time I feel disappointed. I feel like I could do a bit better today. I don't know. That's how I felt.

But it's a very, very weird feeling. Almost felt like just couldn't play better. I don't know.

Q. You look a bit dazed. Did he surprise you in any way? Have you processed it yet?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Yeah, he did surprise me. His serve, he's not the biggest server on tour, has a pretty average serve. But it's annoying that I didn't get close to break him at all.

He's just very aggressive from the baseline. That's pretty much it. I mean, I don't know. I really can't think of something positive on that match. Probably the second set, which was the one that I got closer to. The rest, it kind of felt like in a way it wasn't tennis so much like the other matches that I played. It felt like a different dimension of tennis completely.

He gives you no rhythm. He plays just a different game style than the rest of the players. He has this, I don't know, talent that no other player has. I've never seen a player have this. He makes you play bad. I don't know. I would call that a talent.

Q. Although this is hard, maybe not tomorrow, maybe a week, but in a few months will this defeat help you?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I hope so. I really don't know. That's definitely not the way I wanted to leave from the tournament. At least I wanted to fight, maybe a fourth set, get something out of it, not just leave with six games only from that match. That's what I meant in a previous interview.

I just couldn't today. The angles that he was using, my brain was used to a certain rhythm of the game with all the righty players that I played this week. Him, it felt like I was always, when he was playing, on the wrong foot. Didn't check properly. Felt very slow today. I feel pretty fast when I'm on the court. I mean, I've improved a lot in that part of my game. Today I felt like a 2-meter-10 guy that can't move on the court. That's definitely not me. I don't know.

Just felt weird. The whole match felt weird from the very beginning. My body was stiff. I wouldn't say I was serving very well. As I said before, just has a talent to make you play bad. That's it.

Q. Do you feel at all tired? You've played a lot of tennis these last two weeks.
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I would say I was mentally not in the match so much. I felt kind of empty in my brain, which is strange, because I never feel like this when I'm in the match. I really wanted badly to wake up. I felt like my reaction time was very slow. I felt like everything was not that alert like it usually is. I felt a bit down. Just a click worse than I'm usually.

I really don't know how to explain this. I guess from the match that I played before or the whole week that I played here, I'm trying to understand what was going wrong today.

Q. When was the last time an opponent made you feel that way on a court?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I would probably say the last time I felt like this - good question - Paris Rolex Masters. I felt pretty much the same when I lost in the second round, I think. I felt really not in the match. I felt like I was somewhere else. I was trying to (indiscernible) myself up little bit, give a reason to be on the court, but still couldn't find one.

That was also a bad match that I played there. I actually practiced with Rafa the day I played down there. I mean, okay, practice is different. That's the tournament that Rafa had to pull out. We had the practice, and after that practice he pulled out. The very next day, I don't know, I was playing horrible on the court. It wasn't me.

That's what I'm thinking. That's what I said before.

Q. He does something to you?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Yeah, his game style has something that it kind of makes the other half of your brain work more than it usually does, let's say. I don't know. I'm trying to understand, but I cannot find an explanation for that.

Q. You had a big week off court, a lot of attention beating Roger. You hit 100,000 subscribers on YouTube. How much does all that other outside stuff affect this match?

Q. Just this whole tournament. The growing attention, it's something new for you, I would think.
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: For sure. For sure, I mean, this tournament kind of changed and gave another dimension to my career. I'm really happy that I got some good wins this week, against Roger.

Again, I will stick to that match because I did play a very good tennis against Roger, against Bautista Agut, and also Berrettini in the fourth-round match, who is a great player, in my opinion.

Yeah, I had good matches. But I'm really disappointed today because, again, I feel like I could get closure and prove myself a little bit more, not let him dominate the entire match. Just felt wrong.

Q. Do you think something about the occasion, your first Grand Slam semifinal, was a factor?
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: Maybe. I hope it doesn't happen again. I really hope it doesn't. It's nice to have wins against these kinds of players, top four. I mean, it's not that I don't want it. I really want it badly. But I've got to want it a bit more than I want it at the moment.

Q. (No microphone.)
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I mean, I'll try. Hopefully I get closer next time. I've been working really hard. As it seems, it's going even worse than before. Against Rafa, I did play a good match in Toronto against him. I had my hopes high for the next time. I remember saying to myself, I'm going to beat this guy next time I play him. That's why I'm so disappointed today, because I wasn't even close.

Again, I'm going to try to work hard, aim high, hope one day maybe I can get a win against him.

Q. I saw Roger Federer beating Pete Sampras in 2001. Everybody thought he was going to win the tournament or could possibly win the tournament. Then he lost to Tim Henman.

Q. He won in the last 16 and he lost in the quarters. Then you know what Federer did afterwards. You shouldn't get depressed.
STEFANOS TSITSIPAS: I agree with you. I agree with you. But I don't know, I'm just trying to think how Federer beat him so... Similar game style like me. I'm trying to understand. I mean, I don't want to lose to Rafa 10 times.