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Sergiy Stakhovsky second round

Wednesday 26 June 2013

Ukraine's Sergiy Stakhovsky faces the media following his second round victory over No.3 seed Roger Federer.

Q. Was it your tactic to keep coming and serve and volleying as much as you could? That was like a 1980's grass court performance.
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: At least somebody can play that still.
Well, you can't really keep up with Roger on grass on baseline rallies. It's just impossible, I would say, especially here. He's playing very well. He feels the grass. He feels the slice. He can do whatever he wants with the ball.
The only tactics I have is press as hard as I can on my serve and come in as much as I can. The shorter it is, the less rhythm he got. I think today I was successful enough that he didn't get into the returning rhythm, only somewhere in the middle of the fourth set he find it. So I was lucky, I would say, to pull it out in the fourth and finish it.

Q. Where does this match rank in terms of your career to date?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, it depends how you want it to rank. I mean, it's my first win of the top 10. What else I can say? I think it's 0 to 10 or 0 to 11 against top players.
Beating Roger here on his court, where he's a legend, is I think having definitely a special place in my career.

Q. I think you're more known recently to tennis fans for whipping out your cell phone during a match, tweets about equal prize money. Do you feel like you've distracted yourself from your tennis at any point and people should have expected more from your game, including yourself?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: I just don't really get what kind of question you're trying to put. I'm sorry.

Q. You've had a lot of other stuff.
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Yeah, but I still tweet. It's not that I'm not going to tweet today or something or I'm not going to attend the council meeting after this or something. It's just part of my life.
I'm not out there. Twitter is Twitter. I'm in the council because I want to be in the council because I think I can change things.

Q. Could you tell us what did you say to each other at the net?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, Roger congratulated me and said that I was playing very well. Honestly, I don't really remember what I was saying because I was kind of somewhere else. Sorry (smiling).

Q. Were you annoyed or in some way intimidated by the two shots he hit straight at you during the fourth set?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: No. Should I be?

Q. I was asking you.
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, look, when you play serve and volley, you put your opponent in the position where he needs to pass you, and going into you is a way of passing you. You cannot think that the easy shot he will have he going to put it around you just because you're standing at the net.
We're playing tennis. Well, he could have choose maybe a different direction, but sometimes it's not easy. Sometimes you're going whatever is easiest for you. It's part of the game.

Q. What does Roger Federer's career mean to you and to the sport?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: I think it means like our sport is Roger Federer. Well, here at least I would say. He's the greatest player we had. He's the biggest name we had and we still have, thank God. And I think as a person he showed us that you don't have to be really somewhere else, you can be a decent man achieving a lot of things and still be a person which everybody admires.

Q. Given all of that, how would you describe what you said and its impact on your feelings about what you accomplished today?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: I still have no feelings what I accomplished. I'm still somewhere lost. I'm sorry. I cannot really explain. It's hard for me. I don't feel nothing actually, I would say, because I don't really feel it yet. Maybe tomorrow is going to be better.

Q. After the match you said something like, When you play Roger Federer, you play two Roger Federers, the player and the ego. What did you mean by that?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, every player, when you step on the court, when I step on the court, the first round I played Dutra Silva. I played Dutra Silva. Some Brazilian people know him and know he's playing good on clay.
Here, when you come here, on the cover of the Wimbledon book, we don't have it here, is Roger Federer. You're playing the guy and then you're playing his legend, which is following him because he won it seven times. He's holding all possible career records here, I think, winning matches and everything. You're playing two of them.
When you're beating one, you still have the other one who is pressing you. You're saying, Am I about to beat him? Is it possible?

Q. You feel that on the court?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: It's just psychology. You cannot run from it. It's just how it happens. When I was a break up in the fourth, you think about it. Really, is it happening?

Q. At what point in the match did it occur to you that you could possibly win this?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: A break up after I hold from 15‑40, 2‑1.

Q. It was that late?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Before that I was just playing point to point. Then the thought start to come into your mind, Did you ever think about it?

Q. Have you ever volleyed that well?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: I did. But I never volleyed for so long so well. The titles I won were usually best‑of‑three so I didn't need to volley for four sets.

Q. Federer was the seventh former No. 1 to lose today. Did you feel a different energy around this tournament today? It was seen as a very unusual day, even before your match.
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, I would like to say that I did, but I didn't. I mean, even Darcis beating Nadal, then retiring, okay. But Nadal on grass is something different than Roger Federer.
So you kind of hoping that you have that chance. When you go on that court and you playing, you thinking, Okay, this is going to be hard.

Q. The serve‑and‑volley game, how would you describe its importance to you and maybe the possibility of starting a revival?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, it's not up to me I think the revival. It's about the tournaments and the surface we play on. I hardly believe that a surface is left on which you can serve and volley successfully. It's just that simple.

Q. You grew up as a fan of Sampras and Rafter.
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Yes. That's how I try to play. But sometimes you have to adapt to the tour and you have to play from the baseline.

Q. Years from now when you're an old man, what will you tell your grandkids on what a Ukrainian did on a summer day in 2013?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Ask me this question when I'm done in this tournament. I hope I can still look forward for some matches. Right now I can definitely tell my grandkids, I kicked the butt of Roger Federer (smiling).

Q. Do you feel the grass this year is playing faster?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: A little bit, yes. I would say yes. But grass is very adaptive to the weather conditions. When it's windy and it's not that hot, it's faster. When it's hot, it's very slow.

Q. If you were to see these results against these top guys, Nadal and Federer, people would wonder what you're doing outside the top 100.
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Well, that's how competitive is our sport. It's just simple. It's how hard it is to be in the top 100. Because there's 100 better guys than me, that's it.

Q. What was your level of belief going into this match today that you could accomplish something like this?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: I didn't think about it. I went in to be competitive enough. I was saying that if I'm going to hold to him in the beginning of the match, then I have a chance of maybe even doing something. But if he would run away from me in the beginning, then you cannot catch the Federer train.

Q. Sometimes we see after incredible results...
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: Don't ask this question (laughter).

Q. How are you going to put this aside and focus on the next round and come out with a great performance?
SERGIY STAKHOVSKY: I hope I can come out with a great performance the next round. That's what you have to do in order to win. Beating today was great, but I didn't win the tournament. I just won the second round. There's another five rounds.
When I get off the court, I don't know who I play next round. Now I know.


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