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Kei Nishikori third round

Monday 30 June 2014

Kei Nishikori speaks to the media following his 3-6, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6, 6-4 victory over Simone Bolelli.

Q.  I wonder how you would describe your own game so far at Wimbledon this year.  Good?  Bad?

KEI NISHIKORI:  I think it's good, winning three matches.  But this one was very, you know, how you say, very tight match for especially me because he was playing really aggressive and flat, both side, either forehand, backhand, especially forehand.

He was hitting a lot of winners, and sometimes I didn't know what to do.  I was kind of like yo???yo.  I was running side to side.

I think Saturday he was playing much better than me.  But, you know, today was some lucky shot.  3???All I was down 15-40 on my serve.  There were some lucks, too.

Q.  Is grass not good for you?

KEI NISHIKORI:  No, it's good.  I like to play on grass.  Yeah, it's been a good three matches.

Q.  What does it mean to you to be this far at Wimbledon?

KEI NISHIKORI:  You know, very happy for now.  It's not easy right now to think next one.  But, you know, there was a lot of stress these two days, especially yesterday.  I never had something like this, you know, after playing fifth set, take one day off, play again today.

It wasn't easy.  But very happy to win today.  So hopefully I play another good one tomorrow.

Q.  How did you keep yourself occupied and focused throughout your day off?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, like I said, it wasn't easy.  First time for me to feel like that.  Yeah, it was very tough time to concentrate all the way until today.

But I think I started well.  I played much better tennis today than Saturday.  So, yeah, very happy the way I played today.

Q.  Did you practice on Sunday?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, yeah.

Q.  That must have been important then to keep the focus rather than let it slip?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah.  I need always, you know, good practice before the match.  Yeah, I was practicing, you know, some good tactics for Simone today.  Tried to get focused and good practice yesterday and also good warmup today.  So everything is good.

Q.  Can you describe your relationship with Michael Chang, and how important is his influence to you?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, it's been great.  Already six or seven months.  Yeah, I love how he does and coaches me.  My tennis is also changing.  You see ranking is much higher than last year.

So, obviously, his help is something, for sure.  Yeah, I love how we doing together right now.

Q.  Do you think he has more understanding about Asian players?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, it's not because we are Asian, but we kind of same, similar how we play.  He's not the biggest guy on tour also.

He knows how I should play.  Yeah, but maybe also mentally he can understand little more the Japanese way.

Q.  With you only playing four games today, would you have preferred to have played your next match today as well?

KEI NISHIKORI:  I don't think so.  I am too tired mentally.

Q.  For nine years four guys have dominated the majors.  What is most important that you've learned from observing, both on and off the court, the top four?

KEI NISHIKORI:  I mean, you see this year it's little bit changing already.  Stan won Australia.  Also, you know, me, I've been playing well.  Also the young guys, Raonic, Dimitrov, is beating top guys also sometimes.

Yeah, love to see changing little bit.  I don't have fear to play those guys anymore.  I used to have maybe last year or couple years ago, but not anymore.

But, you know, they're always there for long time.  Some secret is there, for sure, what they doing better than, you know, other guys.  We have to learn a lot of things from those top guys.

But I think we are getting closer to top four or five guys.

Q.  What are some of the things you've learned from them?

KEI NISHIKORI:  I don't know.  For sure a lot of things.  You know, I've been playing a lot top players.  I think the way they play, I learn a lot of things.

I don't know.  Sorry.

Q.  You said something interesting about Michael, that he might understand how you do things, the Japanese way.  Could you take a moment and explain that.

KEI NISHIKORI:  I was kind of joking (smiling).

But I think, for sure, there is different, American and Asian or Japanese, you know, how we think, the culture and everything.

But, you know, I love his personality, yeah.

Q.  He's a very positive guy.  Is he good to be around?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, he's also, you know, teaching me mentally, too, mentally strong.  Like you said, he's very positive always.  Yeah, I love how he thinks.  Sometimes it's different, like we think different.  When we talk to each other, I try to understand how he think.

Yeah, I learn a lot of things from him - tennis and also mentally, too.

Q.  Outside tennis, how do you relax?  Japanese way or English way, how do you relax?  Do you ever relax?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, I try to relax in my room usually.  I love to go out when I have day off.  Yeah, I love to sleep.  So I usually sleep a long time.

Q.  Obviously tennis is big in Japan because of your success.  Do you have any sense that your success is helping put down roots which will make tennis big 15, 20 years from now in Japan?

KEI NISHIKORI:  Yeah, I hope so.  I hope tennis is getting big and more players are coming up, especially young guys having really tough time coming from Asia.  So I hope there is more guys coming from Asia.

Yeah, if I can do well, you know, and send some good news to Japan, it's going to help for sure.  I mean, it's not only tennis, but I hope sports get big in Japan.


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