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ROLAND GARROS


May 27, 2014


Gael Monfils


PARIS, FRANCE

G. MONFILS/V. Hanescu
6‑2, 4‑6, 6‑4, 6‑2


THE MODERATOR:ツ Questions in English, please.

Q.ツ Just about the match, and how you felt about it in general.ツ Second set looked like it slipped away, but otherwise a good match?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Well, I feel great, you know.ツ I think I step on the court very strong.ツ And, you know, I was a bit worried about the start, because I haven't played for I think four weeks.
So it was a bit blurry.ツ In the second set it was good, also, but I think I dropped my focus.ツ I just been a bit lazy on some shots.ツ I think Victor took the opportunities.
Then, you know, it was very tricky, I will say, the third set.ツ I think the key about the third set, I had the double break up, then he come back.ツ Then he had another opportunity to break serve, and I think I was a bit lucky.ツ I think somehow I get more aggressive.ツ I get back to it, and it was all right after.
THE MODERATOR:ツ Questions in French.

Q.ツ I'd like to know if you have enough confidence for the rest of the tournament or do you think you're going to gain power as you go through the rounds?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Well, yeah, I hope I'm going to gain powers as I go deeper in the tournament.ツ Of course I'm more confident when I play on the courts.ツ But I hope I can play better than that and with a better game plan.
The biggest difficulty for me is to have the quality of game I had before.ツ But all the time, because there are moments during the match I feel it's not enough.
You know what I mean?ツ I hope with all of these matches that I can win, I'll adjust.

Q.ツ How did you feel physically on the court?ツ You say, With adrenaline, I fly.ツ Is there something that you felt, no pain, etcetera?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ As I said before the tournament, I didn't hide the fact that I use anti‑inflammatories, which helps a lot.ツ Also, there is adrenaline, and this helps, as well.
So I hope I'm not thinking about it too much.ツ Of course it's painful.ツ I have to use ice.ツ When I touch it, it hurts.ツ But then on the courts with anti‑inflammatories and the public, the crowd, it's better.

Q.ツ How did you prepare yourself physically for these four weeks?ツ Because, you know, you're used to this.ツ You've always had these pre‑Roland Garros tournaments with little injuries, and therefore you would say that today you take a distance, you say it's relative, you don't panic.
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ I panic all the time, each time.ツ It's never obvious.ツ Each time I think this year is going to be a bit better, and then this silly injury, you know, these silly injuries, but it lasted four weeks.ツ I can't say, you know, it's four weeks.ツ I take anti‑inflammatories, so it's not vanished altogether.ツ It's not easy.
You know, sometimes there are days I feel better; other days I say, Okay, I'm going to play this tournament and I want to go a level up with my body machine.
But then my body brings me back to reality.ツ And, you know, these are what I call "parasites," but we're used to it.ツ And what I try to do is keep my level of confidence.
When I was practicing, I was hitting well the different balls, and I want to work on the upper part of my body with more muscle training.ツ What worried me a little is that I felt heavier due to muscle buildup and training.
And a few days ago, really, I managed to run at full speed, if I could use the expression, and this was what was bothering me during the physical training.

Q.ツ That's for the social media of Roland Garros.ツ And I saw you on Saturday.ツ You played really so well for the kids, and to dance, it was so great.ツ Then I felt, well, he's injured and he's doing that.ツ He can forget about it.ツ We were afraid for you.
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Well, no, my performance was so‑so.ツツ I was not at my best.ツ That's true.ツ That's true.ツ This is what my younger brother told me.ツ He said, I saw you dance better than that.
You know what people are afraid of is that I dance every day, almost every day since I was a kid.ツ Well, I dance less now.ツ But maybe it's in my culture.ツ We dance all the time.ツ It's natural.
So these types of steps, I do this all the time.ツ Now, if you switch on music here, I'll dance.ツ My father, as well.ツ He's 57.ツ He would dance, as well.ツ It's the way it is.
I have the impression that "you," for you it's less natural.

Q.ツ How did you manage to get ready?ツ You said that you practiced, but who were you playing with?ツ And what do you do?ツ And you have no coach, I think?ツ So what do you do?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ My program is quite simple:ツ What I do is that I draw up my own program.ツ I try and stick to it each day.ツ Then I think I told that you before.ツ These are things I did in the past.ツ You know, I have my landmarks.ツ I know how to prepare myself for such situations.
And of course, I have muscle training sessions and I have the basics.ツ I have forms that I use, and I know what I need now with the doctor.ツ I know that with the doc, he said that you should practice more your physical training and your muscle building.
So I adjust my program, and then the thing is to find the sparring partners.ツ I found several of them who came to me at home.ツ I will do what I usually do.ツ That is tennis and then physical training and then tennis and then physical training every single day normally.

Q.ツ You say muscle building, you did too much of that?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ No, I didn't say too much.ツ But I said I couldn't be really present on the courts to run.ツ It was difficult.
Also, I also do some riding, as you know, and then if it's two weeks of muscle building, two weeks in a row, you feel heavier, but I had to do this, of course, to build my muscles.ツ So I wanted my ankle to feel better so that I could run a hundred meters, 200 meters, change directions when I was running, and it was difficult.ツ Each time I was trying, I could still feel the ankle.

Q.ツ In Monaco, you said you wanted to have a full clay season and to play against the best.ツ Do you remember that?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Yes.

Q.ツ You said you wanted to play against them in Madrid and Rome.ツ It wasn't the case this time.
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Yeah, that's true.ツ I have the impression that if I want to test my matches against these big players, I'll have to do this here.ツ It's as simple as that.
And then I understood quickly that, you know, sometimes you have desires, but that's life, you can't do all that you want to do.ツ And you have to adapt.ツ I adapt each time and I try and adapt as best as I can.
But I am ready.ツ I prepared well with what I had.ツ Now what I will try and do is go as deep as I can.

Q.ツ Thierry champion knows you well.ツ He was saying not long ago, Is it not a way for you to put some of the pressure away?ツ To say, Okay, after Spain I can feel it.ツ Then you know what he says, I'm getting too tired, I'm not going to go for it, and this way there is less pressure on you.ツ Is this possible?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ No, on the contrary.ツ There is more pressure on me because I know people are going to ask me the question.ツ It's more pressure on me.ツ It's never good, never good.
You have the impression, you know, that you're back, it's magic, you're going to win matches.
No, it costs an awful lot to me, because I practice alone.ツ It costs me a lot each day to try and do my best.ツ And I never know.ツ I practice.ツ I practice.ツ But I don't know how I'm going to react, how the other players are going to play.
I have the impression that they are players made of steel.ツ This is the fear I have.
And here I have no matches.ツ The last time I had a match, when was that?ツ Against Paul in Bucharest.ツ So I have no landmarks.ツ It's not simple, it's not easy, really.
What I'd rather do is lose during the first round at each tournament, but to have more rhythm.ツ And even practicing with the guys, you know, at the end of the day you're at home, you're practicing, and with almost the same people, well, you know, and then you kill them.ツ I'm not hard on them, but I kill them.

Q.ツ (Off microphone.)
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Well, these guys have good reasonable rankings, but they're not the best.ツ It's not against Rafa or Djoko, things you can do when you're on the tour, or during a tournament.
So that does me good.

Q.ツ When you're here, you try and practice with Rafa, Djoko and Stan and others?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ No, not necessarily.ツ I try and practice with everybody, you know, people who are really good, respective of their rankings, but the ones I play with are not top 100.

Q.ツ What about Lokoli?ツ I think he has two sets already.ツ What do you think about him, Lokoli?
GAテ記 MONFILS:ツ Well, I saw parts of his matches.ツ I think he plays well.ツ He's got this drive.ツ That's good.ツ He's young.ツ He's got the drive that is necessary.
This is what we want.ツ Everybody wants that.ツ It's good.ツ He's atypical as a player.ツ That's cool.
On the contrary, I hope you're going to be kind with him and help him.ツ Truly, truly.ツ Because this is what we miss, you know, people backing us.ツ He's shy, you know, he's shy in the locker rooms.
I saw him.ツ We discuss.ツ We chat.ツ Some players shake hands with him, and he's still very shy.ツ He wants to do his best, and that's cool.ツ It really is cool when you have somebody who is young and growing quickly, he wins matches, as well.
If he can have fun, help him, really.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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