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January 15, 2015

Julien Benneteau


L. MAYER/J. Benneteau
6‑3, 7‑6

THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions, please.

Q.テつ Tough loss today, but how did you feel about the week?
JULIEN BENNETEAU:テつ Well, I played two good matches, which I needed when I came here.テつ Very good win yesterday against Pospisil, who is good player.
Today Mayer played very good.テつ I played not bad, not bad at all, but I just couldn't find out how to break him.テつ I had like four breakpoints during the match and I didn't convert one.
Him, he has one opportunity and he took it.
Obviously it's disappointing because I wanted to go on here in Sydney.テつ But my level is good.テつ Physically it's better and better.テつ So I will stay here for the doubles and work a little bit more to be ready for the Open.

Q.テつ Do you see this tournament as a good opportunity to get your first tournament win?
JULIEN BENNETEAU:テつ You know, it's not because all the seeds, the best seeds lost that means it's easy.テつ It's still very, very strong, very difficult.
A lot of players played very good.テつ We saw Kukushkin playing very good against Del Potro.
Tomic has already one this title here.テつ I think he feels good here in Sydney.
So, no, it's not like I missed an opportunity.テつ You know, I lost in quarterfinals, so I cannot say myself this kind of thing.

Q.テつ You are one of the few players that has a top ranking in both singles and doubles.テつ Do you find that easy to balance, or do you feel like it takes away from one or the other?
JULIEN BENNETEAU:テつ It's not easy to balance.テつ Sometimes some weeks are difficult to manage.テつ Of course last year it worked very well for me.
I will try to improve this year and, as you said, to balance my schedule very well to be competitive in both competitions.

Q.テつ You're 33 now, but you're also playing the best tennis of your life really.テつ You reached a new high ranking.テつ I'm wondering what's driving you to keep getting better and better?
JULIEN BENNETEAU:テつ I still have a lot of goals in tennis.テつ It keeps my motivation intact.テつ You know, I still want to win the Davis Cup with the French team.テつ We were close last year.テつ But this is such a wonderful thing.
With the doubles also I have a lot of goals.テつ I would like to win a Grand Slam, especially at home.テつ Last year was maybe the best moment of my career, you know.テつ With doubles I had Olympic medal, and a year is not so far away from now.
So I enjoy to still have these things which can happen if I'm fit, if I'm still good.テつ So that's why I play and that's why‑‑ I cannot explain, but like yesterday or two days ago when it was raining I was in my room.テつ On TV they showed like a best of Australian Open last year.
You know, to play Grand Slam, it's something‑‑ these are the best events of our sport.テつ To be able to play there, even in the first round I might play on a small court, outside court, but to give me the opportunity to have a big match against a big guy on the big courts in these big events, it's wonderful.

Q.テつ With like all the finals that you've played in tournaments and had some rough losses at that stage, what are some of the things you've learned from that?テつ What are some of the philosophies and perspectives you've learned from being in that position so many times?
JULIEN BENNETEAU:テつ First of all, it's to be in this position again, to give myself another chance.
So I will try to reach another final this year, but I'm honest with myself and with my coach when we speak about that.テつ First of all, it's not my main goals, otherwise I would plan my schedule differently.
You know, in the year some 250s are very strong and some tournaments are better and higher than others because of the location on the world, because of the date.テつ For example, last week in Brisbane it was maybe the best 250 of the year with Federer, Dimitrov, and Nishikori at the same time.
I could have chose to play in Chennai, for example.テつ But I'm not making my schedule with this in priority.テつ And then with my coach, yeah, give yourself another chance, play well.テつ If you play well, if you stay fit, you put maximum chances on your side to be again on the final.
Then on final just play like you played the last ones.テつ Okay, I lost, and that's we are honest and I am honest with myself.テつ On the ten final I lost, okay, two or three ‑ Especially one here against Nieminen ‑ because it was a final, I didn't play my tennis, I didn't play my game.テつ Okay, I failed.
After that, two were very close, one in Kitzbテδシhel and one in Kuala Lumpur last year.テつ But I cannot blame myself.テつ I had a match point.テつ I took my chance.テつ I went to the net.テつ It was very good.テつ He made the passing shot and then he played very good.テつ I say, Okay, it's tennis.
For some reason, at this stage of the tournament things didn't go my way.テつ But like I said, let's have another chance first of all and we will see.

Q.テつ What was it like for you and the other French guys attempting to bounce back after the Davis Cup final and get motivated again, prepare in the off‑season?
JULIEN BENNETEAU:テつ It was a huge disappointment for sure because we had the luck to play in front of an incredible home crowd, 27,000 people.
Like Australia, I think France, we are an historic country of the Davis Cup.テつ We know also that in these times it's very difficult to win a Grand Slam in singles.
Winning the Davis Cup can be our Grand Slam, you know.テつ It's like one of the most popular event and one of the most beautiful events in our sport.
Last year everybody was very determinated to play this competition.テつ We were all committed to each other and to the captain.テつ I think this year is going to be the same.
We're going to try another time.

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