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May 29, 2018

Nicolas Mahut

Paris, France


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

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. First of all, a not-serious question: What would you say after 25 minutes when you're leading 6-1?
NICOLAS MAHUT: Well, at least I didn't take a bashing. I started thinking that I had to leave as much time as possible. I know he starts very slow, and it's not as though if I play from the baseline that I'm going to win. So I had to play at the front part of the court as much as possible.

I played well. I broke, and I served well. And then after I had a game point, he broke. If I had stayed a bit more, he would have probably been a bit less -- more unsettled. But afterwards, it was difficult.

Q. You had the feeling that there was a kind of air of farewell towards the end. What do you feel?
NICOLAS MAHUT: Well, yeah, it's possible. Towards the end, I wanted to savor the game a bit. It might be my last game here, my last match here.

But it will depend on a number of things. I'm not saying that I'm going to stop my career, but maybe I will give preference to doubles.

It could be my last match here, and that's why I wanted to really enjoy the last minutes.

Q. There were some uncertainties on him, on your opponent. What did you feel?
NICOLAS MAHUT: Well, you always run up against some difficulties. Yesterday I had a fever and some things go wrong. He is a real champion. He had to withdraw at Rome because he had injuries. But if he was on the court today, it's that he feels that he can line up matches. Otherwise he would have withdrawn. He probably wants to play to go as far as possible, and that may be one of the reasons why he started slow.

But the more the match was going on, the more I understood that he was really regaining all of his potential.

Q. Yesterday you had a fever, but how will you feel for your doubles?
NICOLAS MAHUT: Yes, I knew that it was going to be a bit hard physically. I knew that I wouldn't be able to go up until five sets, and that's why I was very aggressive in the very beginning, and afterwards I felt much better. I played my match, and I was very surprised that I had recovered well.

Tomorrow doubles should be okay. My son, I caught this from my son. It's a virus. All parents know about this. I'll tell him it was his fault because you want me to hug you. But I think tomorrow will be okay.

Q. You said, I think, that it may be my last French Open, but you feel happy.
NICOLAS MAHUT: Yes. It's a player that I like very much, and I'd be happy if my last match that I played him. I was lucky, because I was able to play the tournament.

But afterwards, we don't know what's going to happen. The season is a long one. I can come back, but I could fall. If I do drop very much, then I'll give preference to doubles.

What I can say was that I really enjoyed the match towards the end.

Q. Would you come back next year and just play the doubles?
NICOLAS MAHUT: Yes, of course. I'm not stopping my career now. So I do have important objectives to play doubles for a certain time. It might be that I play back here in doubles, and that's not a problem for me.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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