Q. What was your immediate impression when you realized who you would be playing in round one?
Q. Sorry, had to ask it.
Q. Good. I don't have to play Rafael Nadal, so I can relax.
Q. Can you beat him?
I've just got to play, you know, the tennis I played early throughout Sydney. Obviously if I can do that I'm going to give myself a chance.
It's going to be difficult, for sure. Going to have to be one of those days where I can play my best.
Q. Does last night in Sydney have any bearing on confidence levels at all?
To me, he just played too good. It's totally two different games compared to del Potro and Rafa. I had no answer to del Potro's game. He was too good. Couldn't match it.
Maybe against Rafa I have a chance. I'll have to play very well, play obviously much better than I did in the final. But I've got a few days.
Q. On a broader scheme, how do you feel your tennis is going at the moment? How excited are you at the prospects in 2014?
Unfortunately here, you know, I'm up against Rafa. But I'm going to use it as an opportunity. You know, whatever happens ‑ win, lose ‑ I'll take a lot from this match. It's going to help me 2014 a lot because, you know, obviously I've had the past two years where I haven't done well throughout the year except just tournaments like Wimbledon and Davis Cup.
I need to keep this attitude up. If I do, I know I can play like I played last week, for sure.
Q. In a way is it a positive because there is no pressure; you're not expected to win?
I think with the final I played last night, I didn't really go for my shots. I got too much into one zone. He played too good, was overhitting me. I have to play against Rafa differently, step up to him. Whatever happens happens.
Q. How much better a player are you now than when you played him here last time?
Q. Is it the sort of match you feel you have to make a fast start?
He's going to be very intimidating to play. You just have to stay with him. I mean, he is human. He does mistake, obviously not as much as the other players, but I've got to play very, very good tennis to have any chance.
Q. He said yesterday it's not actually the ideal draw for him either. Do you take confidence out of that, appreciate that sort of comment?
Q. At Hopman you played against Agnieszka Radwanska. What was that like sharing a court with her?
You know, she did beat me in that mixed, so I wasn't very pleased (laughter).
Q. What about del Potro? Should people be rating him higher in this tournament than they have been?
He can play amazing. You know, the way he plays sometimes is just too good. The way he did against me, you know, full credit to him. If he plays like that, I think he has a huge chance in this tournament.
Q. How are you feeling now? Will you bounce back?
Q. Are you working on anything specifically in your game or on the physical aspects that you think is an essential necessity to move up in the rankings again?
I necessarily don't play my best tennis here sometimes, but I win matches. I think it's because I work hard in the off‑season. I've got to find that time throughout the year and just keep doing what I'm doing, believe in what I'm doing. My tournaments will come out more consistent than the past few years.
Q. You must be pretty happy that you put yourself in the situation of defending the title in Sydney. You seemed pretty strong out there, pretty mature. How do you feel?
I'm very happy with the tournament last week. Obviously, I would have loved to have won the tournament, defend my title, have a chance to win my second title. But I was up against a player that can beat anybody he wants on his day.
Q. (Question regarding advice for upcoming Aussie players.)
Q. What do you make of your Davis Cup captain playing doubles here?
He's an amazing guy. Lovely person. Good captain. I'm happy he's been onboard for Davis Cup the past few years. I've learnt a lot from him, playing, having him on the court as the captain. He's been an inspiration to me. I've learnt a lot.
I'm happy, like I said, I've had the chance to spend this much time with him the last few years.
Q. As a tennis fan, you're at the right age to have watched Hewitt and Rafter.
Q. It's a tough first round. In 2010 you won in five sets, very tough. Would that give you confidence that when you relax and play your best, you can do really well here?
BERNARD TOMIC: Absolutely. Played very good in that match against Fernando being two sets down, 2012 I think. Completely different match against Rafa. There's a reason why he's No. 1 in the world.
I have to play the right tennis to have any chance of winning. Like I said, if I don't play the right tennis, I will have no chance.
Q. How does it make you feel when people question your effort out on the court?
It's helped me in the past a lot, I should say. It depends how you are. There are a lot of players who are very focused, you can see their focus, which is a very good thing. There's other players who use it differently I think.
Effort is only between you and you. You can't judge effort. No one can judge effort, I think. Only the person that's doing the task or the sport they're playing can judge effort.
Q. You're happy with your own effort?
Q. You said it's between you and you.