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June 7, 2024

Casper Ruud

Paris, France

Press Conference


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

THE MODERATOR: Bad luck, Casper. You didn't seem to be 100% out there today. Can you just explain a little bit what went wrong.

CASPER RUUD: Yeah. It was a little bit unfortunate. I started well. Towards the middle, end of the first set, I started feeling some discomfort, an ache in my stomach. So I wasn't able to keep the intensity and the energy level up. It was something that was bothering me. Just kind of limitating me -- if that's a word (smiling) -- to play the way I want to. It was a pity.

Yeah, it's not something I think is very serious or going to last for a long time, but something that came up in the first set. I won the first set, so it was a good feeling, but didn't feel very well even in the first set. Then the last three went, you know, quick because Sascha played well, of course, but I wasn't able to play with the kind of tennis I like to play with intensity because I was kind of limited with my stomach.

You know, I don't want to make an excuse or excuses, but it's frustrating and disappointing.


Q. We saw Aryna Sabalenka was unwell during her match a couple of days ago. I just wondered, given that you had a few days without a match, whether you were aware of that, whether you had maybe tried to stay away from any public areas to avoid anything, and whether you had anything before you came in at all to this match.

CASPER RUUD: Yeah, I saw that, the same. I was watching the match, actually Sabalenka, and she also seemed maybe a little bit unwell. I'm not sure if there's something going around, I don't think so, because it's been only her and I, I think.

Maybe just unlucky. Maybe it was something I picked up in my dinner last night, maybe it was from the breakfast this morning, or something just before that I got in my stomach.

I don't have the answers now, but I just, you know, disappointed that it had to be today. Why couldn't it be yesterday or day before when I had three days off.

So it was a bit unlucky. I was really looking forward to the match. In a way I started well, but yeah, I wasn't able to keep it up, unfortunately. Just, yeah, unfortunate.

Q. Tough luck today. Is this the best version of Sascha that you have seen?

CASPER RUUD: Yeah, I think he's playing some of his best level. You know, he will have to answer for himself. But I think serving-wise he was putting on a clinic today.

I maybe wasn't returning great, but he picked his spots pretty well, with the serves especially, and from the baseline. He's steady from both sides.

And the backhand, of course, we know it's a beautiful shot. He can rip it cross down the line. He's a good baseliner. He has everything that you need to play good clay court tennis, I would say.

I think the last two, three, four weeks I guess he's playing some of his best tennis in a while. All his life I'm not sure but definitely in a while, yeah.

Q. You have been playing some of your most attacking tennis that you've played in your career, I guess. Could you reflect on your progress over the last few months and this year despite the result today.

CASPER RUUD: Yeah, you know, I'm very pleased with how the season has been so far. In my game I've tried to make a few adjustments and improvements, and I think that they've come along pretty well.

Still, there's a lot, a long way to go where I feel like I'm 100% satisfied, and I think that's a good thing. I don't feel like I'm complete yet as a player, very far from it. So I still have a lot of things to work on.

But the season has been great, I would say, to sum it up. This result here in Paris is, in my eyes, a great result, and it was unfortunate and a pity today that it ended this way. But I consider it, let's say, the first half of the year very good, and I'm looking forward to having some time off.

I think I have played maybe 50 matches already the first five months of the year. It's going to be nice with a few weeks off and then I'm looking forward to getting on the grass.

Q. Next week, will you still be watching matches or will you just try and cut yourself off from tennis for a little bit?

CASPER RUUD: Maybe not next week, but, you know, I think it's fun to watch grass, and I will probably watch the final, honestly. I think it's going to be an open one with Sascha and Carlos.

You know, no offense to Stuttgart or 's-Hertogenbosch, but I won't be glued to the TV for those events but maybe for Queen's and Halle. Then obviously the rest of the grass weeks I will try to look because I'm obviously going to play grass myself. I won't play any events leading up to Wimbledon but Wimbledon I will play, of course.

I think it's a very fun surface, and I have been joking a little bit about certain things before, but I think it's a very fun surface to play on because it brings something completely different. It challenges me in a way that I think is good for my game in a way to be challenged.

I'm really looking forward to Wimbledon. But yeah, next week I don't think I will watch much tennis.

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