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May 22, 2016

Benoit Paire

Paris, France

B. PAIRE/R. Albot

6-2, 4-6, 6-4, 1-6, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. I think that you're relieved because you managed to win the match in five sets, and you did get off to a good start.
BENOIT PAIRE: It's a relief. It was not easy today. Heavy conditions today.

I didn't serve well. So the match was tough for me, even though I did get off to a good start. On the face of it, it was easy at the start, but I was uptight.

First round at the French Open, it was complicated, but I'm delighted because I have advanced to the next round. I'm not really tired, because the rallies were not long. I'm relieved, and I feel good, very happy.

Q. You decided to part company with Lionel Zimbler, so no coach?
BENOIT PAIRE: I will talk about it at the end of the tournament. I can't add much. My family, my friends, are around me, though I don't have a coach. I like emotional ties. My family, my relatives are with me. I can trust them. I feel good with them.

Q. There is a generation of players aged 29, Gaël, Tsonga, and Pouille, and then you are in between these generations of players.
BENOIT PAIRE: So I'm neither good nor bad?

Q. No, quite the opposite. What about this situation? There is a generation gap. What do you think about that situation? We have been talking about French training school. There aren't too many players able to make it to the top.
BENOIT PAIRE: You have Adrian Mannarino is ranked 88. Then you have Lucas Pouille. There are other young players. Quentin Halys, they play well. They can do lots of great things, these young players.

To be honest, I want to focus on my own career, so I'm really happy to get through to the next round. I'm trying to do my best. We had an exceptional generation of players with Gilles, Gaël, Richard. So honestly, it's very difficult to do better when you have two or three players in the top 10. It's exceptional, of course. We didn't have the No. 1 in the world, but most players, French players, reach the semifinals of the Masters 1000 tournaments. I'm neither old nor young. I'm ranked 28th in the world, so I think that the French school is good. They invest a lot in young players. They help a lot the young players.

But for the rest, we had a great generation of players with these four players. We will try to fill the gap, and we will try to get close to the top 10 players and we will do our best, like other French players. That's all.

Q. How did you prepare yourself? Did you play with your brother?
BENOIT PAIRE: Yes. I played with my brother, my best buddy was with me on court two days ago. Since the start of the year, I have been alone, apart from the Australian Open, but I have been on my own since February, so I notched up good results. I prepared myself alone, but I don't necessarily need a coach. I think that I have made strides in the past few years, and I'm still progressing and I'm on my own and I can make progress on my own. From time to time I wish I could have somebody around me, but my family, my relatives, my brother, my friends are with me. Before I was alone. But it doesn't matter. I feel good. I hit the ball well. Mentally speaking, I feel great. This win will do me a lot of good.

Q. So you wanted to be alone. You were eager to be on your own, to be alone? You don't want to talk about Lionel.
BENOIT PAIRE: Yes. I wanted to have a break with my former coach, but as I told you, I will talk about it later. I'm just focusing on my matches, great emotions today on the Suzanne Lenglen Court. We have a great atmosphere. I just want to leave these emotions, and I'm very happy to have won the match. I will play against Gabashvili, so looking forward to playing the second round. I think I dug deep today.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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