It (his Nomination for a Laureus Award) is considered as the the biggest achievement in Sport. It is a huge accomplishment even for me to be nominated and to be among so many of these great athletes in the past who were winners, it’s just a huge sign for me that I had a great, great season and my work is recognised by many sports athletes.
We were working to try to be more aggressive, to play my own game, rather not thinking about tactics too much, about the other guy. Try to push my game to be a priority, that’s what our goal was.
When you have Goran (his coach) at your corner and giving the right advice, it makes a huge difference. When I tried to play Wimbledon last year, I straightaway felt for the first time comfortable playing than before, that’s what I feel is going to be similar this time. I am looking forward to Wimbledon this year.
I was much more in the centre of media in the following few months after the victory at the US Open. That was something new, new experience for me, which I didn’t expect. When you are playing, everything is flowing and you are not thinking about the consequence. But now I am looking at it and it’s the achievement of my life and hopefully I can continue on this and have this as a start for something great in my career.
Most of the players that I play now, they start to play very, very risky tennis. And in my own understanding, that gives me also a positive thought that I know that I’m very good and I’m showing the players that I’m doing my own dream and that they need play to above their abilities to beat me.
When you are a young kid coming into the sports world, in tennis, you always think that you have enough time and that all your career is in front of you. But when you see that the competition is really strong, that it will require you, year after year, to work hard to achieve something big, then when you are coming to an age of 25, 26 years, you start to think that it won’t. That you wish it will happen fast; that time is running away.
I went home after the US Open and I could not believe how big an impact it had on the complete nation. It was all over the news. It’s considered as one of the biggest achievements in sport in Croatia and I even had a huge reception of people at my hometown. But I was extremely happy because people in Croatia were needing some big achievement. So I felt that at least it made people happy.
I tried to work on different parts of my physical abilities. I’m looking into this 2015 as a big challenge and, definitely, first priority is to stay in the top ten and my big goal is to reach top five in the world.
I would say the Wimbledon tournament is going to be the first that I’m putting my eyes on to do well over there and I’m going to try to peak my form for Wimbledon time.
I feel the past players who can transfer their own knowledge to other people are the best people to be working with. They know the game. They know how it is, in which direction it’s going, and they have been through many of those situations before in their own careers. Goran just teaches me that I don’t do same mistakes as he was doing in his career; that’s going to be already a huge accomplishment.
Novak and Roger and Rafa, and Andy of course, they will stick around for many, many years and they will be the guys who probably are going to be extremely consistent. They are not going to fall down with their game and form.. If we can get close to the top and stay consistently there, I still feel that there will be new Grand Slam winners.
Seems completely unreal to be called Grand Slam champion. I was dreaming about this all my life, and suddenly last four, five days everything started to change. And with my tennis especially. . It’s just a huge accomplishment and huge moment for myself and for my team and for everybody around me who was with me all these years supporting me, believing in me and never giving up. So this is just the peak of the world.
Things changed around and flipped it over with trying to enjoy on the court and enjoy every moment, which helped me to be much more relaxed. I feel that was the most important part for my game.
For me the message would be to everybody big, big thank you for all the support and believing in me. I spoke with a couple of people, with my family at home, with my godfather in Zagreb. Everybody was glued to the TVs. That definitely made me stronger, made me hungrier to win.
I feel very inspirational for all the other guys out there who are, you know, working and sometimes losing motivation, having trouble to dig deep and to believe in the achievements. I would definitely feel much stronger if I would see somebody like me accomplish things like this. It sort of came out of nowhere for me. Few things clicked in just right before tournament sort of.
I wanted to call my family back home (to celebrate his victory). I was just trying to talk with them to say thank you for all the support and for, you know, everything they did for me.
I feel in Croatia most of the guys who play sport, doesn’t matter which sport, everybody is very, very emotional and emotional to win, emotional when they lose. The small group that are going through, the ones that are extremely emotional and being able to control it and also not to accept the loss and to fight through, I feel that this is, what makes Croatians good.
We (Croatians )don’t have good tennis schools. We don’t have too long of a tradition, as you said. We don’t have tennis centers like in bigger countries, France, Spain, that year after year the young ones are going through. Just every several years some youngster just comes up out of nowhere and he’s playing great tennis, and I feel that that’s the most important part that is in every one of us.
I watched actually a lot of the matches. Of course you want to watch the guys and maybe you’re gonna catch a few tactical things you see. II was involved in tennis because I was training every day either physically or tennis, and I didn’t let my mind go away because I was hoping to return any day.
I’m just focused on tennis. I’m not thinking about too much all these things around, media, whatever, whatever necessary. That helped me definitely to become better.
I was injured. That pulled me back a little bit and in tennis it’s a very sensitive area when you go one step back, it always requires more time to come back to the point where you were with form. For the players, you get back to form by winning matches.
For me, the most important part is the feeling on the court. Games on clay are a bit different than all the other surfaces. If I’m feeling really well on the court then on all surfaces and at all tournaments I’m very sure in myself and confident that I can beat the best guys.
When you play well you have no nerves. You are calm. You know your abilities. You don’t need to get stressed. And we had so much fun with my team – stress could not come around and get in the way.
If I am in form I have a really good chance to do well. Wimbledon’s the tournament I’ll really be focusing on. I’m feeling good. I have a lot to look forward to now.
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