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Richard Gasquet, Medibank International, January 11, 2010
 

MEDIBANK INTERNATIONAL


January 11, 2010


Richard Gasquet

SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES


R. GASQUET/F. Lopez
6-1, 6-4


Q. Good start to the tournament for you.
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, it's for sure a good start, because Lopez is a great player, 14 in the world, and he has a great serve.
I played well last year with semifinal in this tournament, so I'm happy to be there and to win the first match. It's always difficult to win a match. I'm happy because I played well.

Q. Are you playing as well now as you were this time last year, do you think?
RICHARD GASQUET: It's hard to say. It's a different year. I really don't know, but what I know is I won. I improve my level match after match. Day after day I'm playing better and better. That's the most important for me.

Q. What are your expectations going into the Australian Open. I know you haven't had enough matches yet, but do you feel you're...
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, for sure. The problem this year is I'm not seeded, so it's always difficult, when you have maybe a tough first round. I could play Federer or Nadal first round. Last year I was seeded so it's a big difference.
But if I have a nice first match, after if I am confident I can go far in the tournament. I hope I will have a good first round, not Nadal or not the best four in the world for sure.

Q. When did you actually start playing tennis again after the decision?
RICHARD GASQUET: I stopped during three months. Roland Garros, Wimbledon, I didn't play at all three months. But after, when I knew I could play, I played again for maybe four months to Bercy.
After, I practice, even if I had a decision, I was confident and I practiced. But for sure it's nice to have something in the end. But I practice the best I could.

Q. After going through this experience of perhaps having tennis taken away from you, has it changed the way that you think about playing and your approach?
RICHARD GASQUET: No. I knew I was lucky to play tennis for sure. But, yeah, it's my life for sure. When I couldn't play Roland Garros and Wimbledon, even if I couldn't go to the stadium - in Roland Garros, I wasn't allowed - so that's not a nice thing, even when you did nothing at all.
That's life. It's happen. I think it was a nightmare and a movie. I'm not sure it happened really, but, yeah, for sure it happened. During six months it was incredible story, but now it's over.

Q. Has it made you more hungry as a player?
RICHARD GASQUET: I don't know. I really don't know. You know, I didn't want to be in this story. It was really tiring eight months with it in the head. It was horrible.
But I'm happy. I just want to enjoy now, because I had a big story. Just most important for me just to enjoy the match. I know I'm lucky to play and I had a big thing, so now I just want to enjoy.

Q. Because you've had the time off, do you feel physically fresh?
RICHARD GASQUET: For sure it's more tiring than to play ten Grand Slam in a row, this story, so I'm not fresh at all. Trust me.

Q. I mean physically.
RICHARD GASQUET: For sure I have no injuries, but it was really, really tiring. I prefer to play one hundred matches in a year. I played in 2007 a lot of matches. It was more tiring than to play a lot of matches.

Q. Obviously it's cost a lot. Have you set goals for this year as to where you want to be in terms of ranking?
RICHARD GASQUET: Come back in the top 20 to begin. Because when I stopped, I was at 19 in the world. So to begin, I want to be in the top 20.
After, to come back one day in the top 10. I was in 2007. But as I say, to enjoy it and to play with no pressure at all, because it...

Q. It sounds like you're still recovering from this whole experience.
RICHARD GASQUET: Yeah, for sure. It was really difficult. So now just want to play for fun and to do the best I can.

 

 

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