Alexandr Dolgopolov is a breath of fresh air. The giggly Ukranian with the long hair and longer last name has been in the spotlight since making the quarterfinals of the Australian Open this year, charming fans with his perma-smile and refreshingly diverse game.
He’s had a bit of an up and down year since then but is currently sitting just outside the Top 20. He was nice enough to sit down with us after he won an exhausting match against Grigor Dimitrov 6-4 1-6 7-6(7) in the Third round of the Winston-Salem Open. Once he got going he pretty much smiled and giggled throughout the interview, I’ve just highlighted the particularly intense giggle-fits.
That was a really tough match today. How do you feel?
Feels good, I got some matches. Because I was sick in Cincinnati it feels nice to win a match like that. I was match point down and somehow got a bit more luck in the end so I got the win and I’m happy.
What was wrong in Cincinnati?
I got some virus, it was since Montreal. I was sick and had a fever so it was pretty tough to play. It’s finished, (and I’m) trying to get my form back and to get top form for the U.S. Open.
You’re known for always being in a good mood. Does anything ever make you angry?
No. Nothing really makes me angry, that’s tough. (Smiles)
That’s amazing. So you never get pissed off?
Yes, I do get pissed off but it doesn’t last for long. (Laughs)
How do you stay so happy?
I don’t know, everything is fine so I’m happy right now.
You won a lot of fans in the U.S. when you won the Doubles Title in Indian Wells with Xavier Malisse. What are your memories from that run?
It was a lot of fun because we just had some fun. We played a lot of doubles guys and they were playing serious, so we just had a lot of good matches. I think we won all the matches on the Super Tie-break. So it was interesting and really nice to win a title.
Do you guys plan on playing any more tournaments together?
We’re not playing together now… but I think we’ll play together sometime.
Who are your best friends on tour?
I’m friends with all the players, maybe more the Russian speaking guys, because it’s easier to communicate with them, but I’m really good with anyone.
What’s your biggest hobby outside of tennis?
Cars. Fast Cars. (Laughs)
What car are you driving right now?
How fast do you drive it?
Pretty fast. (Laughs hysterically)
I noticed your family was here in Winston. Do they usually travel with you?
No, it’s actually just the Second time this year, they just had some time off and they came to support me. It’s nice.
Will they be at the U.S. Open?
A lot of tennis player have been shaving their heads lately. Do you plan on joining them?
I don’t think so! I was surprised actually, I don’t know why but yeah, there were a few guys but no, not me. (Laughs)