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June 2, 2018

Gael Monfils

Paris, France

D. GOFFIN/G. Monfils

6-7, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French, please.

Q. Can you tell us all the emotions you have had in this match, which was a bit crazy.
GAEL MONFILS: Frankly, I didn't have so many emotions or so many moments, special moments. I was focused on the match from the beginning to the end.

Of course, the stop helped me. As I said, I'm ill, so it was very positive for me. I was going down physically yesterday.

Then I came back to the court today very well. I was able to impose my game, my tactics. And David played very well. He was able to fight back at the decisive moment.

But as far as I'm concerned, I didn't have different states of mind. I was feeling well.

Q. The fourth set was totally crazy in terms of scenario. How did you manage the end of the set? How did you live it from the inside? You were quite expressive with the audience, with the public, also with David. How did you cope and try to stay calm physically?
GAEL MONFILS: I don't remember the scenario of the fourth set, actually. I broke his serve. Then I had a ball at 4-1, or two balls. It was good tennis. I think that David returned very well on that game.

I was asking the support of the public to push me, because it was really at that moment that I had to accelerate further to hope surviving.

Then David played very well that game, because he was strong in the play and mentally. So congratulations to him. It's really fantastic what he did, and that's really the token of a champion. So congratulations to him.

Then, nothing special, talking about the discussion between myself and David. It's pointless. When we changed side, I said that I took my time because the judge had told me yesterday I take too little time. And then, today, he was telling me I take too much time.

And so the way I recover is different. I always have injuries, so I like to rest on my knees so I can recover.

But what bothered me is that if I'm told to go faster, I go faster, and then I'm told to go slower.

And David told me, I'm sorry. I didn't know that.

But as I told the umpire, I'm friends with David. So I had nothing against David.

And he played very well the match points. At 5-4, he played them very well. I tried a forehand along the line. I thought it was the right hot shot. But with my coach, we agreed that it was the right shot. The ball stayed in my racquet and just below the tape of the net. So it was the right shot.

And he made two beautiful forehands, because he had missed a few before, and here he was successful. So he really played the game perfectly.

Then, at 5-All, physically, it was difficult. I was leading 40-15. It was a difficult game for me. I had difficulty in hitting good first serves to bother him. It was complicated. Then, at 6-5, I was totally physically exhausted. It was a difficult game.

Q. What is the emotion that will dominate? Because you arrived at Roland Garros without any references, without knowing, and you were very close to winning against Goffin, and you were ill here. Is it frustration or do you say to yourself you have resumed a good tennis level? How do you manage this loss?
GAEL MONFILS: Like all the other losses before, it's over. And at the end, I have to switch to something else.

So, really, I try to ask myself as little questions as possible. I try to resume a good tennis level. Today, it was excellent. Even yesterday, I have to try to keep the same level. In Lyon, I had a good level of game for one set and a half. So progressively, I'm getting back.

Of course it's bothering. You want to win. But once in a while, it doesn't work.

So it's over and we'll restart on something new. But I really believe in this. I tried to fight, and it's going to be over very soon.

Q. You were talking at the beginning of Roland Garros of improving your stuff after the tournament. How are you going to tackle Wimbledon?
GAEL MONFILS: It's a very good question. I'm not going to ask myself this question right now, but I'm going to work on my stuff. I've just lost, so it's a bit complicated to answer.

But within a few days, I'll be able to think a bit more, talk with my coach, and see what I want. He knows some of my desires. We had a few discussions already on my progress, so it's going to happen, but I can't tell you when and what.

But I will take one or two days just to rest and recover.

Q. With the elimination of Lucas and Richard this afternoon and yours, there's no French -- oh, there's Herbert. What is the consequence on the rest of the tournament and Roland Garros and the French fans?
GAEL MONFILS: It's a good question for you, actually.

Well, I've just lost, so I'm disappointed. I'm first to be disappointed for myself, disappointed for my team, my family, my friends, and for the public, of course.

The rest, well, it's a general question, actually. So it's not relevant for me.

Q. We saw you fighting back physically. Did you envisage abandoning?
GAEL MONFILS: Never. I'm at Roland Garros. I come to the court even if I'm diminished. It's like I'm at 100%. So I never think about that. Strangely, here I have this capacity to surpass myself, to go beyond pain.

And as I already say, David was good, because here you really have to fight hard to beat me, although I was not feeling well. So congratulations to him. He came and won.

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