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May 27, 2016

Gilles Simon

Paris, France


6-4, 6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. Is the frustration even greater, because even though you were tired, it's someone that you usually play well against? Is it difficult not to have been able to perform better?
GILLES SIMON: Yes. But on the other hand, yes, if there was a guy I could have defeated today it was him. I can't really complain. He was just too tough. He played too well. He kept me running about.

Every time it was 30-All, but 30-All wasn't good enough. He always got the point. He always went that extra mile. He felt it was the right day for him. He looked like he felt really well. He was even better than usual.

He was better; I was less good. He had the winning serve, the little backhand when he needed it. It was nice, clean tennis, so it must have encouraged him to move forward.

Usually when we're face to face he ended up in a dead end, but today definitely not. He must have known that physically he's not as strong as I am, perhaps. But obviously he was stronger than I was today and he did the job. It was a fine match for him.

Q. Are you worrying at all about not having been physically able to recover after the match against Pella? These are sensations that you're quite used to. Being physically exhausted, did you find that worrying for the future?
GILLES SIMON: No, not really. I was talking with Jan. I'm not worried physically. I played for four-and-a-half hours. We did what, three sets two hours, 15? Two hours, 20? It was long. The points were long. So I think the score, in fact, is pretty tough if you look at the match itself.

Seven points, in fact. Three, four -- obviously if I win he doesn't get those points, but the three, four points in each set, I can actually see what they were.

Of course today it was tough physically, but, again, I don't think I need to be ashamed about my physical condition. I think it's just clay. The clay has been more difficult.

There are very few matches where I hit the ball properly, and when you don't hit the ball properly you lose energy. You need to run around. You need to fight. You never make a real difference with your play, with your game play.

So it probably happens to others to battle on the physical side. There are always guys where I can make a difference, but here I think I needed to spend too much energy.

I think I really need to reposition my game play, because sometimes I have opponents who hit really well, who are making progress, but there are other aspects. I didn't do a single shot -- it was all over the court. So against Baghdatis in Madrid, three sets, and then Andy. It's a bit tough.

But I draw from my reserves in the first rounds too much. But on the physical side, I actually feel that I'm okay, because Pella played three times better than I did. In the stats he was better than I was in everything. It wasn't just an impression, because the stats say the same thing; 15 points more than I did. A miracle.

I think you need to face the reality of that. My tennis is not so good at the moment, and it wouldn't have allowed me to go out there and win the big matches. If I had been against Stan it would have been really tough. I wouldn't have been able to face it.

But then it sucks, because I could have done this today. I beat him in Monaco. It wasn't an extraordinary game, but it's also tough for him to see through me.

But there's something missing there. Now we're going to move on to grass. We're going to need to hit harder, take more initiatives, and it will need to come back. The physical point, physical aspect doesn't compensate for anything. If you're not good you're out, and quickly.

Q. You said you had a bad feeling. Is it more annoying because it's been going on since the start of the season? What are the reasons? Have you identified those?
GILLES SIMON: It's lasting a bit too long. But I had a chat with Jan, and he said, Do you think physically you could do better? I said, Well, yeah. We can always do better. We didn't do exactly what I wanted to do before. I can't raise my arm anymore, so obviously that doesn't help.

But, you know, today I think the physical aspect is becoming more important over the actual game play when you can't hold the baseline and you can't even return these balls. Although it wasn't that bad today.

But on clay I have done stuff that I had never done before. You need to run more, more meters to run; you need to compensate for the technique and the gestures that are not there.

And it has been lasting for a while. I think real matches where I felt really good when I was hitting the ball, I don't think there have been much more than two. Two is not very much on such a long season.

There were other matches that were good because you hit it properly. You don't need to make a winning strike. But you don't have that little extra thing where you're really feeling that you're sending cannon balls that you feel that you're creating.

There were days where I was just defending, days where I was on the attack. Delbonis had two there. No, that was in Madrid where I won with that. I think it was probably my finest victory of the year. At least that's the way I feel.

It wasn't 6-3, 6-2, 6-1, like Lucas. I did it. I won 6-4 in the third and I saved these break balls. It's true that apart from that, from the start, it hasn't been great.

So it's 7-5 in the third all over the place. Physical struggles all over the place. Physically, I'm okay. I just can't do that every day.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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