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Saturday, 8 July 2017
21:34 PM BST

Clarke/Willis: Second round

Jay Clarke and Marcus Willis talks to the media after the 3-6, 6-1, 7-6(3), 5-7, 6-3 win against Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut

Q. Congratulations. Looked like a crazy atmosphere out there. How did it feel for you?
MARCUS WILLIS: Yeah, I don't really know how to explain that one. We played great. Crowd got behind us. I'm a bit speechless, to be honest.

Q. Can you put into words how it felt to beat the reigning champions?
JAY CLARKE: We said before just to try and look after ourself and if we get chances then we will try to take them. Yeah, don't be too down if it goes to a tiebreak. Obviously it would be great to get there against guys like this.

So, yeah, just look after our serves and look for chances if they come. Yeah. That was it.

Q. Would you say this is one of the best wins of your careers?
MARCUS WILLIS: It's our second tournament together, so probably. Yeah.

Yeah, that was awesome really, especially the way we came out in the fifth and kept going. We had three match points. Didn't do a lot wrong but it's easy to let your heads drop and we fought really hard.

Q. What were your expectations coming into this?
MARCUS WILLIS: Expectations was to lose probably, but I knew we could get close. If we rack up the games on our serve, anything can happen. We took a few risks, paid off. Played really well.

Q. When you say lose, did you discuss that beforehand, just do what we can, see how it goes?
MARCUS WILLIS: Expected to win. Always go into a match thinking we can win. Yeah...

JAY CLARKE: Small chance, but yeah.

Q. At what point did it become a big chance?
MARCUS WILLIS: 40-30 in the last game.

Q. Not three match points?
JAY CLARKE: They were serving.

MARCUS WILLIS: They were serving at five first serves in a row. I remember that. Wow.

JAY CLARKE: Because the points we played obviously to get to 40-Love were really good, really high quality of play, every return. Three winners from ourselves.

It was going to be tough to end. We decided just to go for it and play really aggressive. I think we hit four before the net.


Q. How would you describe your partnership on the court?

JAY CLARKE: Relaxed.

MARCUS WILLIS: Relaxed, yeah.

Q. Start of play do you try and balance it between --
MARCUS WILLIS: Definitely he's great athlete, great serve. All-around player. I try and look after my serve and get around the net as much as I can.

Q. Off the court, are you good friends?


MARCUS WILLIS: Only known each other past year, if that. I'm an old man, he's a youngster.

Q. You know your way around this place quite well. Do you think there is something about Wimbledon that gets you going better than anywhere else? You seem to rise to the occasion big time.
MARCUS WILLIS: Yeah, I mean, it's -- yeah, it's my favorite tournament. Every Brit's dream.

But no, I'd say every time I step on the court I fight very, very hard. You know, it's easy to fight hard here. It's not so easy other places. I always manage to give my best.

Q. Follow your qualifying process, singles, quite closely. Is it kind of gratifying that the man who beat you in five sets is only just out of the main draw today? Must give you some confidence in your ability?
JAY CLARKE: Yeah, definitely confidence. At the same time obviously it's still there because you go in and beat two very good players, and probably easier, I'd say, than the way he beat me. It's a lot of confidence for us. It's tough knowing that obviously could have been me. But winning doubles is great, as well. Yeah.

Q. Jay is a bit new. What do you make of his ability and how far do you imagine he can go both in the partnership with you and on his own?
MARCUS WILLIS: I don't know. I think results speak for themself. He's 18, last round quallies of a slam first time. Yeah, he's not been losing too often. Yeah. Don't be surprised.

Q. If you give him any advice what would it be?
MARCUS WILLIS: Keep doing what you're doing. Keep your head down. Don't get involved in all the rubbish outside of tennis. Doing what you're doing, it's working really well.

Q. The crowd is quite rowdy today. Do you think that helped or hindered you?
MARCUS WILLIS: When you're about to hit second serve, probably hinder (smiling). But, no, it annoyed them, as well. They are supporting us, they're behind us, that was great.

JAY CLARKE: Helped us more than them. It's great, definitely.

MARCUS WILLIS: If every time you win a point you can't hear yourself, it's pretty cool.

Q. Does it add to the pressure at all realizing there are people in front of the TV doing the same thing, as well?
MARCUS WILLIS: You're not really thinking about that when you're bouncing the ball. I break it down to literally every shot and as soon as I think, I'm terrible.

Q. You seemed to be actively whipping it up at one point toward the end. Was it a conscious decision to try and get them excited or...
MARCUS WILLIS: I don't actually recollect. Probably a natural thing by the sounds of it, but you get caught up in the moment and you need the crowd behind you. And they were fantastic.

Q. You beat the guys who won last year. What can you guys do, do you think?
MARCUS WILLIS: We are going to take it a match at a time. I mean, we haven't played much doubles. We are obviously pretty good (smiling). You can't say, oh, we can go and win it. We take it a point at a time.

JAY CLARKE: Everyone's good, especially now in the tournament, even better players are coming through. Just have to keep doing...

MARCUS WILLIS: We believe we can beat anyone there obviously. Then match at a time.

Q. Are you still finding out about each other and the partnership, obviously?
MARCUS WILLIS: I thought by now we were, but we haven't clashed racquets. It's a really good natural understanding. I don't know why. But there is, and it's great. I've played with people and run into each other. It can get quite aggressive out there.

Q. How did you get together? Where did the idea spring from?
MARCUS WILLIS: I think your sister sent me a message, do you want to play with Jay? And I said, yeah, absolutely. Let's do it. Didn't get in the first two tournaments. That was awesome. Cheers, guys. (Smiling).

We got in this one.

Q. Why did you sister send the message?
JAY CLARKE: I didn't know his number.

Q. She had his number?

Q. Right.
MARCUS WILLIS: Terrible. Who knows?

Q. What made her think it could be a good combination?
JAY CLARKE: I think obviously --


JAY CLARKE: -- what he did last year. You know, I have seen him play a lot. (Indiscernible.) He really enjoys it. He's very relaxed on court, and that's the kind of person I want to play and stuff.

MARCUS WILLIS: And the forehand (smiling).

Q. Did your sister get 10% of the money?
MARCUS WILLIS: Jay's money. (Laughter.)

Q. I think was it your family were literally jumping for joy?

Q. What's it mean for them to get through?
JAY CLARKE: Thank you. Obviously, yeah, it means a lot. Not only to win matches here but to beat the guys who won it last year. Because we watch a lot of tennis and we've obviously watched these guys win so many tournaments. To actually beat them, it's unbelievable. We have only just started playing doubles, really.

MARCUS WILLIS: A bit of an upset that one, I think.

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