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January 26, 2022

Gael Monfils

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Press Conference


6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 3-6, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Tough luck. You seemed to have the momentum after winning the third and the fourth, but what changed the beginning of the fifth?

GAEL MONFILS: That's exactly the same question I'm asking myself. I guess I wasn't good enough again, you know, just to keep this momentum. I have been struggling a lot of the time, you know, disappointing I keep struggling.

Just try, you know, and a few years left for me to put myself back, you know, to the situation and, you know, hopefully once I will make it better.


Q. Curious what you want to take from this time in Australia and the progress you have made?

GAEL MONFILS: I will take a lot of positive things. Again, you know, I put my situation to beat a top-10 player at the last two slams in a row, so the last two times, really bad in a way.

I keep learning from that, but I feel like, you know, it's been always tough for me. It's still tough for me, but somehow I'm not losing the faith. I need one time. I don't need, you know, to -- I won't win 20, but one time, just one time I need.

You know, I'm working for this. I still believe I can do it. It's hard. You know, it's been 20 years that I'm not doing the good thing, but who knows? This year it might click.

Q. Did you feel like things were clicking this year with how well you started?

GAEL MONFILS: Not click. You know, I just play my game. People just like remember me playing bad for a small period of my career. You know, it's very funny that a lot of people think a very short period of my career compared to everything I achieve, so I just play good.

As I just say, on these moments I been struggling all my career, been very poor decision, poor decision-making, and it's too late, you know, to change, but maybe to click once and I just need once. That's it.

Q. With the match in the first two sets when things weren't working, did you think you were going for too much or not going for enough? How did you turn things around?

GAEL MONFILS: You know, you still believe. At the end, sometime what's funny is sometime people see me too strong. They forget that you play a top-10 player which is younger than me and more experienced than me, because he beat me in quarterfinal, played the final in a slam, play actually semifinal as well.

He handled it good, play good, big game. Obviously my tactic was not up at the beginning, but as I say, I'm in shape, I have a strong belief, I play good.

Of course he will have a tough time, you know. I think I'm a good player. Not better than him but good player. So no matter what, he need to work to beat me.

Q. What does Matteo do that makes him so tough to beat at Grand Slams? In the last year he's only lost to Djokovic at Grand Slams.

GAEL MONFILS: Serve big, big forehand. Is quite solid on the tough point, tough moment. You know, with his backhand slices, he can hit a few down the line sometime. He just bring like a big A game otherwise in the big moment.

Q. Does the success you had in Adelaide and here, does it make you more optimistic about what can come this year?

GAEL MONFILS: Not really. As I told you, you know, I'm working hard. I feel I play good. I was lucky to win a 250, but as I say, I'm gonna click, for sure, maybe go in a semifinal in a slam, maybe more, play better in the 500, play better in the 1000.

So, you know, is just a beginning of the year. It's a long season. So, you know, will have some time for sure. I will go back at home with a positive energy in Australia this year.

Q. You mentioned like "click" a few times. What do you think that looks like?

GAEL MONFILS: Important points, bring the A game, and inside the court. It's easy to say, you know, but inside the court, make the good choice. Either don't rush or you don't go for it. It's always a split of second, split of second and boom, it's gone.

The best, they are the best for that, because the split of second, they make the best decision. They know what to handle it better, the pressure. And this you cannot learn. Is experience. But even let's say with experience is even you need to be at that moment and make it right, you know, to click it, because you can talk about it. Gonna say it again, but if I have the opportunity let's say in Roland Garros quarterfinal, you know, when I'm, I think I was 30-0 up, you know, I don't know what's can happen, it can be windy, can be sunny, but it's like at that moment I would have to make this good decision.

As I told you, all the time in my career, I never made the good decision, you know. I'm fine with that. I must say I'm very fine with that, but I believe I can click once, you know. Before I finish, I believe that once I will do it. So that's my faith.

Q. Tough luck today. I actually wanted to ask you about Alize Cornet. She made her grand slam debut 17 years ago, and now she's finally into her first quarterfinal. What do you make of the kind of determination she had to finally make it to the last eight?

GAEL MONFILS: It's great. You know, is great. There were some rumors maybe it was even her last season, you know, on the tour, and hopefully we will have many more of her. She's a fighter till a young age. For sure, she's a hard worker, and she really deserve where she is.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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