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July 27, 2016

Francoise Abanda

Montreal, Quebec, Canada


7-6, 7-6

An interview with:


THE MODERATOR: Questions in English.

Q. You were very competitive in the match. When you consider both sets went to a tiebreak, it could have gone your way. What do you think was the difference?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Yeah, I think in the second set my first-serve percentage was very low, so that really didn't help. Had a lot of chances in the second set to win the second set and then go into a third set. But that doesn't guarantee a win. But I could have definitely pushed it further.

Q. What positives do you take?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Yeah, I'm happy that I've played some good tennis this week. I was able to get a win. Considering the past months have been average in my results, I think it's a positive week overall. I think and I really do believe it's going to help me for the rest of the season.

Q. What do you think you learned about yourself and your game this week, these two matches?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Well, I learned that I can definitely compete against top-30 girls. I believe Svitolina, my opponent today, was top 20. I was, like, very, very close to win both tiebreakers, but lost unfortunately.

But I think it's good to see that I'm right there.

Q. What do you do from here? Granby?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: I'm entered into Granby and Gatineau the week after, yeah.

Q. Your second serve, you seemed to concentrate more on getting it in than doing anything with it. She seemed to have a lot of chances to hit off the second serve.
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Yeah, because when your first serve isn't going in, you lose confidence in your second serve. You're trying not to, like, double-fault.

I was really trying to put my second serve in at least because my first serve was just not there.

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. You had a mysterious second set. You were brave enough to come back after being down. But in the 10th game you were two points away from forcing third set. Nothing worked anymore. Was it a lack of concentration? What happened?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: I played a big match yesterday. I didn't really have much time to rest. I went to bed late last night. I got up early this morning. Mentally it had an impact.

When I was going into those tiebreakers, especially in the second set, I felt tired mentally. In the key moments of that match, I was missing, which was a pity. I missed my chances in the tiebreaker.

Of course, if I had won that second set, it wouldn't have been a guarantee that I would have won the match, but I would have liked to have gone further.

Q. You were happy you were able to produce a good game against a good player today?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Yes. Since I didn't have great results lately, it was incredible for me to be back and to be competitive when playing top-20 players. I am happy I was able to play a tight match. I'm sure this is going to help me for future matches.

Q. Can you tell us about your feelings on the court. You were able to break her, then she came back.
FRANCOISE ABANDA: The match was, indeed, quite complicated. The second set was particularly difficult. I was able to break her, but then she was winning the next game. She was always staying close. This is what happens when you play the top 20. They really fight for each point, and they're always focused. That was the difference today.

Q. With your result this week, do you believe this will bring you to the quallies in the US Open? Have you started to look ahead?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Yes, I asked Sylvain Bruno earlier whether I could enter the US Open or not. He's going to check. It would be wonderful if I could do that. Otherwise there are other tournaments in Québec that I will be able to play.

Q. After this Rogers Cup, what do you want to remember of your tournament here?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Well, I remember that first match I won here at home in Montréal. It was fantastic for me. The crowd was behind me. They helped me a lot. I really enjoyed having my first victory here in Montréal.

I hope now that I will be able to go further in the next tournaments because I have this experience now.

Q. Are you trying to find more stability with your coaches? Lately you changed pretty often. How come you can't keep the same coach for a long period of time?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: My recent coaches were, in fact, not really coaches. It was a trial period. The last coach I had was Simon Larose. All the others were not stable because they were just tests, and in the end they didn't work out.

I don't consider I was really coached by them. It was just a trial period. I am a young player and it is important for me to have a coach to help me develop my game, someone to be able to look at my game from the outside and give me positive advice and help me. It is very important for me. I hope I'll be able to find one this year.

Q. Do you have one right now?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: No, I don't. I'm looking for one. But right now is not the ideal situation.

Q. Is it because of that that you have dropped in the rankings?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Maybe. I was unfortunately not surrounded well, I didn't have someone with me all the time to train me or to travel with me. It is really important for me to finalize this and have a coach for my career.

Q. Is Tennis Canada able to support you with this?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Oh, they are supporting me. They are 100% in agreement to help me with my coach. But I just need to find the right person.

Q. (No microphone.)
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Well, since I am playing tournaments right now, it's not a good moment to look for a coach. I need to concentrate on my matches. This is what is tough about it. It's better to have a trial with a coach while you are in a training period to see what that coach can bring to your game.

Q. About the coach again. How come you're not able to get along with a coach for a long period of time?
FRANCOISE ABANDA: Well, I only had two coaches with whom I had a trial period since 2014. It's not many. WTA players change coaches pretty often usually. It's not that I had many coaches that I didn't get along with. It's just that I didn't find an experienced coach who could help me with my game. Those I had were rather hitting partners. They were there to support me, but they were not real coaches. So I only tried two real coaches since 2014, and they just didn't work out.

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