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April 16, 2015

Roger Federer


G. MONFILS/R. Federer
6‑4, 7‑6

THE MODERATOR:  Questions in English, please.

Q.  I guess you must be very, very disappointed being up 5‑3 in the tiebreaker, two chances.  What happened?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, no, it was not the best end to the match, that's for sure.  You know, being down a set and 6‑All, maybe up 5‑2 in the breaker, is still a bad score to be in, to be honest.
I should have done better with the break up in the first.  I think I did a good job to hang around the second set.  I also had chances of my own.  It remained close, but I never felt like things were really happening the way I wanted them to be going during the whole match.
The way I felt at 5‑3 sort of showed how I really felt, I guess.

Q.  Throughout the first set especially, it seemed you were not exactly loosened up, you were uncomfortable, especially when sliding, moving.  Do you agree?  Is that true?
ROGER FEDERER:  I mean, Gaël plays a very different kind of way than anybody else.  You know, he's way back.  He's able to find pace and spin and angle off those balls.  So sometimes you think you're probably on the ball, but you actually realize he is able to hit a shot that not many other players can hit.  Maybe that's something you'll struggle with on other surfaces.
It's the very beginning of the clay court season.  It's going to take me some time to feel 100% comfortable.  Was he feeling 100% comfortable?  I don't know.  Not many guys are perfect this week.
But it was a good week for me anyways to come here and practice with the best, play a couple of matches.  At least gives me some information, if I'm trying to be a bit positive right now.

Q.  Gaël said yesterday in press that sometimes you play very patiently, sometimes you play less patiently.  Is it very difficult to play patiently against Gaël?  Is it a frustrating game to play?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, you got to be comfortable being patient.  Clearly some surfaces allow it more than others.  On the faster court maybe you can force it a bit more.  I'm not so much of a believer if you play on a super fast court you should be playing patient, you know.
We've played in Shanghai and Cincinnati where courts are really fast.  I don't see a point of rallying, rallying, rallying.  I play more flat, more deep into the court than others.  Maybe that's what he means.
I change my game up based on the surface and I player I play against.

Q.  Does this loss change your plans for the rest of the clay court season?
ROGER FEDERER:  Not really.  I mean, I'm going to go back to Switzerland and practice really hard, you know, from whatever the plan's going to be from tonight on until Istanbul.  That's, again, a good time I should utilize in the right way.  I'm looking forward to that.
I'm playing Istanbul, Madrid.  We'll always see what happens with Rome.  It was never sure I was going to play that anyway.

Q.  You came here after a three‑week break.  You had some time off.  Are you happy with the way you worked and spent these three weeks?
ROGER FEDERER:  No, I'm very happy how I worked, how I felt, how my body is, how mentally I feel like I'm in a good place.  It's really my earliest loss besides the Australian Open, I don't know, probably in a year, since Rome last year.  I've had a very consistent run.  I'm aware of this.
This is not going to, you know, put me under too much.  I know it's the first tournament on clay.  Of course, I was really hoping to do better because I felt there was an opportunity.  Unfortunately, Gaël played well today.
I mean, it was always going to be a tough match.

Q.  If you were a promoter in Rome, do you think it would be better for them that you do very well in Istanbul and Madrid or very bad?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, they can do nothing about it.

Q.  I know.
ROGER FEDERER:  Right.  What they shouldn't do is fake the crowds out.  That's what they shouldn't do.

THE MODERATOR:  Questions in French.

Q.  Did you see Gaël improve a lot during the past years?  Before you used to beat him more easily.  Now it's becoming more and more difficult.
ROGER FEDERER:  But I also played him in a semifinals and quarterfinals in Grand Slams where I usually play better, even better than I did in Lille.
But it's true that the matches in Cincinnati and the US Open were tough, too.  I also remember that in the past he was tough to beat.  I remember that match in Bercy.
He is a player with an incredible potential.  Wherever he plays, he always has a possibility to win.

Q.  Given the information you learned today during the match, what do you need to do that you didn't do?
ROGER FEDERER:  I think the only thing I need to do is go out on the court and practice.  I need to play many hours and see what works best.
We will analyze the practice I had on clay and those matches with Seve and Edberg.  We'll try to see what the problems are.
I think the important thing is to play well in practice and to play many sets.  I'll be able to see what works and what doesn't work.  I think I know a little bit how to play tennis.  It's not like I'm starting from scratch.

Q.  What disappointed you most, the fact that you were up and couldn't win those sets or...
ROGER FEDERER:  There are many things I could have done better.  I could have served better.  I could have mixed it up a bit better.  Also I didn't play my slice backhand well enough.
There are some things I did a little bit better and some other things I didn't do well.  Anyway, I never felt comfortable during the whole match.
He let me play a little bit more than he had done in Lille where he was more aggressive.  So I only have to accept what went wrong and go from there.

Q.  You practiced with /TH*EPL in Switzerland.  Are you going to choose now to play in Switzerland?
ROGER FEDERER:  I think we will talk about Seve and I will have to organize for someone to come to Switzerland.

Q.  (Question regarding the NBA.)
ROGER FEDERER:  I'm a great fan of the NBA.  I had a poster of Jordan in my room.  I'm very happy we have a Swiss player now in the NBA.

Q.  How can you explain what happened today?  Is it because of Gaël?
ROGER FEDERER:  Well, it's a combination of many things.  Of course, Gaël, but also it's complicated.  I'm not going to explain tennis.  It would be too long.
Generally speaking, I never felt at ease, and I never felt the way I wanted to be on the court.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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