Under the Patronage of H.h. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Did you feel pressure in having to follow up yesterday’s win?
MALEK JAZIRI: Yeah. I mean, everyone was waiting for me after beating seeded 1. Everyone waiting to go the farthest as possible. Everyone is pushing to play good, you know, to make bigger results.
I think it was important to keep calm, only play tennis, enjoy the game, that was the most important, fight all the points.
Q. You kept calm when you faced eight breakpoints during the match.
MALEK JAZIRI: Yeah, I don’t remember how many.
Q. In the whole match there were eight.
MALEK JAZIRI: Yeah, so I think I played really good on the really important points today, the breakpoints and tiebreak. At the beginning of the tiebreak, I put much pressure, more winners on important points. I was really offensive. My serve helped me today in the really important points, like I said.
Q. Did you get nervous at the end of the first set tiebreak? He started coming back at you.
MALEK JAZIRI: Yeah, a little bit. I was relax, I was 6-Love up. I relax, then a double-fault. Then he start to serve, he make two points. He come up to 6-3. It was not easy.
I am happy to finish with an ace that game, so…
Q. Are you becoming a national hero at home?
MALEK JAZIRI: Yeah, I mean, my home, I’m one of the best athletes in the country. Two years ago I was the best athlete in the country. Since few years a lot of people follow me a lot, in my country they push me a lot, the government as well. It’s good. Since a few years, yeah, I’m top three best players in all sport there.
Q. You beat No. 3 yesterday in the world.
MALEK JAZIRI: I will not lie to you, I didn’t follow a lot. I was focusing on my match today. It’s not easy, I mean. It was a lot of people following. I receive a lot of message. People, like, support, people waiting for more better results.
I try to focus on this match today. I said I will focus on this match. I didn’t look around much. I was focused on the match of today. Was most important than the other things.
Q. How can you translate the positive energy that you gain through these victories here for the rest of the season? It hasn’t been the case in the previous years.
MALEK JAZIRI: Here I feel good in Dubai. The atmosphere is good. People are very nice. They put me all the good conditions here. The tournament make me feel like I’m at home. All the conditions, lots of Tunisian here, big population of Tunisian living here.
They push, they help, everyone from the side. Make me feel good, make me feel home. When you play with a nice crowd like this, you feel at home. You give your best. Even when the moments you go down, the people push you. I think you play better and you feel like more emotional, to give more. It’s most important thing, I think.
Q. What are the positives you can take from here in order to achieve more success throughout the season?
MALEK JAZIRI: Take lot of confidence. Beating top-5 guy, winning another match, take a lot of confidence. Winning matches make you win more matches, you know.
Is really important to play good here, hopefully to continue. Hopefully to continue, no? Start to focus on the match of tomorrow. Tomorrow is another day to focus on another match.
Q. What do you know about Tsitsipas?
MALEK JAZIRI: I saw him a little bit only this year, a little bit last year. I know a little bit of his game. I saw him practicing, playing match. I will prepare how I usually prepare the matches.