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May 26, 2016

Stephane Robert

Paris, France

A. ZVEREV/S. Robert

6-1, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. Well, hello. There was a lot of pressure, I think. I mean, he put a lot of pressure on you from the very beginning, and you couldn't play your game. Did you feel the same?
STEPHANE ROBERT: I think he was under pressure, too. Well, of course, I didn't start really well, but that's not due to what he was doing. How can I say? There was a round, if I can say, when we're looking at each other. I didn't know him. He didn't know me very much. So that was the problem.

The problem was that I couldn't win my first serve, and therefore, afterwards, I felt more pressure. Whereas he was quite accurate, a lot of first points during the first set for him. So it was not easy for me with my return. Then afterwards, my serve was a deficit.

But then I fixed this during the second set a little.

Q. Well, we felt that he was very nervous during the second and third one. Beginning of the third one you won a break. Did you think that then the situation could have changed, turned around?
STEPHANE ROBERT: Yeah. I was feeling better. I had lost 6-1. I was making some errors. Not much. My points and the balls were out. But just a little. So I thought about the Fognini match I played in 2011 when all of a sudden I was playing okay, but then all of the balls were out.

So I managed to recover and fight back during the second set. That's when I felt that I was getting on his nerves. He was getting angry, nervous.

I broke him, and that's when, you know, that's when there was a bit of a problem. I got carried away, carried away. I remember this long shot, forehand along the line, and that's a danger for me, I thought.

I was too carried away. I didn't realize this, but this one was a dangerous point for me.

And then after this, I continued, but I was no longer there. It was complicated. Then finally, during the fourth one I was back. But then, you know, my match was really correct during the fourth set. Well, correct, game. But I was a break down.

Q. Many people say he will become the No. 1 in the world in future, at least top 5. What would you say about his potential?
STEPHANE ROBERT: Well, you know, what's interesting is that you can feel immediately that his game is where it has to be. Even though he was a bit nervous, yet his tennis is good, there's not much excitation, if I can say, his backhand shots are really good. There is not much effort. His tennis is well balanced. Well balanced means he's well balanced, and that's a great strength of his.

There is the same as well with Nick Kyrgios, he's 19, 20 -- let's say 19. It's a good thing. It's nice to see this. He's going to be one of the future big names.

Q. Apart from the results today, what are the things you'll remember from this Roland Garros 2016?
STEPHANE ROBERT: Well, this 2016 French Open is a great experience. I was looking for a second win. I defeated one top 20. I was playing against someone who is ranked 40 in the world. I felt good during the tournament, and there were things I had to work on. That's very, very positive for me.

I'm 36. Many things to work on. It's great. Wonderful. I'll draw the lessons from this match, and of course, I had some problems in the previous round.

I have things to fix. It's never perfect even when you win, and today this is a loss, but yet there are things that are positive, and the little things that are negative I will work on them to improve in the future.

Q. Wouldn't you say that physically you were down? Because at the beginning of the season you won many matches. So physically today, what would you say about yourself? You felt you were not as well physically as you were two days ago?
STEPHANE ROBERT: No, physically I'm really good. I'm really good. No problem whatsoever. I was really feeling good physically. No problems at all.

It's about managing these things. You know, this shot, it's the small detail that counts. There is a moment when I felt, I'm too good. I'm too good. I was not speaking to myself in the right way. And the result is, well, is something that hurts. That's the thing. That's the thing. That's the glitch. That is 1-0 during the third one and it's always something invisible.

Q. You will tell King [phonetic] about the things you will work on? Can you tell us more about this?
STEPHANE ROBERT: Yes, of course. Today I worked -- I'm going to work -- well, you know, look at the statisticians for them, it's clear enough. How can I say? I played with fire when I was serving. There were good shots, but I'm not steady when I serve. I'm not consistent. That's a major flaw that I have. It has an impact on my game.

During the third set and even the fourth set, I was better with my returns, better than with my serve. It shouldn't happen this way. It should be the other way around. It was complicated to manage. I was back at the end of the match. That was really good.

But, well, you know, I need to be more consistent when I serve. It will come little by little.

Q. What about his service compared to the best serves what would you say? How would you rank his serve?
STEPHANE ROBERT: His serve? Well, you can feel it's clean. The way he strikes his serves is really clean. But the second point is a bit strange. It impressed me. I put pressure on him, but then the second one, the second serves are sometimes are even more strongly than the first serve. And he's quite comfortable with all of these shots.

So again, you know, it's not just about strength. It's technical balance that he has. He can speed up very easily. He has good control of his serves. It's impressive, really.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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