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ROLAND GARROS


May 27, 2014


Bernard Tomic


PARIS, FRANCE

R. GASQUET/B. Tomic
6‑2, 6‑1, 7‑5


THE MODERATOR:  Questions in English, please.

Q.  Obviously a tough one for you.  Are you happy with the third set?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, it was tough match.  Difficult for me to come out in this match.  He's the favorite; he's playing at home.  It's a different feeling to me playing back home.
But he played very good.  The first set, set and a half I think I played very, very bad, and it was difficult for me to get in because I wasn't moving quite good because he was giving me different balls and pushing me out.
I really struggled with his game, especially on clay.  He really gave it to me today, and I could not do anything in the first few sets.

Q.  Lleyton was saying before when he had his hip surgery it took him months and months get back to full range of motion.  Can you tell us how it is out there for you, how it's affecting your play, and how long it will be until you sort of get back the level you were at?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, it's not easy.  He had one done and I had two in one week.  I don't know.  You need time.  I felt good last week; felt a little bit strange the last few days.  It's all time and matches, I guess.  Obviously I'm playing on my worst surface, clay, and it's difficult for me to move and find my feet.
But now I have grass coming and I have the next ten days that I can use.  It's going to be important for me, and hopefully get back to the surface that I love playing the most on.

Q.  Last year you couldn't have your father by your side; this time he has been allowed to be with you at the French Open.  Does that make a difference, and was that easy to have that accepted by the French Tennis Federation?
BERNARD TOMIC:  It's good to have him back.  It's been one year and it's been difficult for me.  I'm happy to have my dad back and supporting me and by my side.
You know, it was a difficult year, like I said.  To get this opportunity to have him back the past few weeks is good for me.  Now my biggest priority is to get back 100% with the condition I have and the surgeries that I've had in January.
I'm going to remain positive and hopefully get back on track soon.

Q.  What's the difference between having him there and not?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Support is different having your dad there, someone that's grew up with you your whole life and knows you best.  You know, we started a long journey together, my dad and myself.  We didn't have nothing, so my dad is everything to me.  He knows everything about me.
It's stupid for me to lose someone like that in my life that brought me to the level where I was at.¬† I didn't ‑‑ I wasn't raised the right way because it was a tough journey.¬† We didn't have a lot of money.
For me, having my dad by my side is always a pleasure for me.  He's not difficult.

Q.  So is Velimir stepping aside after this tournament, or is he not even here?
BERNARD TOMIC:  No, he's here but this is his final tournament.  It was planned from the start of January to have him in the team until Paris, so for him to stop now is on good terms.  I'm happy with what he's done, advice he's given me.  A few things have clicked.
But my main role is my dad.  I'm happy to have him back.  Hopefully the next six months can change.  After the surgeries I need to remain positive, like I said.

Q.  Expectations for the grass?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Like always on grass I look forward because grass is my favorite surface.  I believe I can switch it on and anything can happen on grass with me.
Hopefully I can settle with my hips.  The next ten days are very important to me to build and train differently on grass, because the movement is completely different.
Now I've been moving a lot laterally and been moving to balls out wide really high; on grass they're much lower.  I prefer this, but I've got to get settled in the next ten days.

Q.  How concerned are you about confidence levels as you're trying to make this return?  Following the operations and the rehab and all that, are you struggling with any part of the hips?  Are they feeling fine?  Still troubling you or do they hurt?  But more so on the whole confidence issue, because it's so important in the game, as you know.
BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, you know, you say very good and it's a different feeling now.  You're battling with the opponent and you're battling feeling 100% with your body and hips.
Like Lleyton said, it's not easy to come back from this surgery.  Having one done let alone two is very, very difficult.
Main thing is now matches for me.  I managed to pick up my first win my first tournament back, which was Madrid.
You know, wasn't feeling good there, but somehow won that first match, which was very good for me.¬† Should have won the second round in the quallies.¬† I was up 3‑1 in the third.
So just matches.  Happy to get back on grass now in ten days.  Two weeks Queen's is going to start.  I'm happy.  It's a tournament and surface I can really do good on.  I have to prepare myself the best I can.

Q.  How do you feel when you walk through the gates at Wimbledon?  Is it a different feeling to walking in here?
BERNARD TOMIC:¬† It is.¬† You know, here is just ‑‑ I really don't like this‑‑ I mean, Paris is a beautiful city, but I really don't like this tournament.¬† I've never played well.¬† I'm happy that I have played four or five French Opens and I'm only 21 now.
Hopefully I can change in the next seven, eight years.

Q.  And what about walking into Wimbledon, what's that feeling like?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, it's different.  I don't know.  Just brings everything out of me to play any tournament on grass, especially Wimbledon.  I seem to get switched on there.  I maintain my focus, and that's where it brings out the best tennis in me.
I think that's why I've done fourth round and quarterfinals there the last few years.

Q.  Your dad had a court case to go through in his year off; he still has a civil case going.  How confident are you that he can have the focus you need?
BERNARD TOMIC:  I think that's not a very relevant question because I don't think about that.  I didn't even know.  That's a stupid question.

Q.  Is that any distraction at all on you?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Do I sit there thinking about those sort of questions?  No, I don't.  That's a stupid question.  How can you answer that?  That's berserk.

Q.  So your program now, what do you do between now and Wimbledon?
BERNARD TOMIC:¬† Stay here three or four days, have off, and then get ready on grass.¬† It's a different surface and you need a change now.¬† It's a difficult tournament because you have to‑‑ I mean, there are a minimum amount of days and weeks where you have to switch straight on grass.
Not many players can do that, so I'm lucky I have an extra week to do that.

Q.  What leadup tournament are you playing?  Queen's?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Queen's, Eastbourne, and Wimbledon are my three.  We'll see.  Hopefully grass brings out the best again.

Q.  Talking about rankings, so you set yourself goals and that sort of thing?  Do you feel like you have to sort of rule any of that out this year and just get yourself back to a level where you can be competing week to week?
BERNARD TOMIC:  I think that'll come.  Before I was focused a lot on the ranking.  Now I'm more focused on getting back and winning matches and getting back into shape.
Ranking will come.  Right now my biggest priority is my hips and building that strength and getting a lot of matches in.  That's my main priority.
Whether it was to win/lose the last three, four weeks was irrelevant.  I tried as best I could.  I played a difficult player today, and I knew it was going to be tough.
Like you said, the main concern for me is to get back to 100% in my body.

Q.  When you think back a couple of months, would you rethink what you did and try to play in Miami, that maybe it was too soon to try and come back?
BERNARD TOMIC:  Absolutely.  You know, I wanted to pull out of Indian Wells, which I did.
But it's compulsory to play the Masters, one of the reasons I went there and played.  I happened to be in Sarasota anyway, which is two hours away.
So that week I decided to play.  I stayed at my friend's house on the island in Miami, so I thought I would play because it was compulsory.
There was nothing I could do, because some of the ATP rules and systems are messed up.  They need to change a lot of things.  They expect me to have two surgeries, play in a Masters Series, and it's compulsory.
I told them, but it was stupid of me to play this tournament, but I had no choice.

Q.  It's only compulsory if you're fit.  You just get zero points.  Did someone tell you that you had to play?
BERNARD TOMIC:¬† I felt like I just needed to come on court and give it a shot and justto ‑‑ it was eight weeks prior of having any matches, so I just felt like I wanted to get out there, whether it was to lose 6‑1, 6‑2 or 6‑Love, 6‑1, I knew I wasn't going to win that match.¬† I got out there with a mindset of using it as rehab sort of thing.
That was okay.  I knew I wasn't going to win.  I was happy I got out there and just gave it a go sort of thing.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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