Roland Garros

Tuesday, 24 May 2022

Paris, France

Benoit Paire

Press Conference


6-3, 7-5, 1-6, 7-5

THE MODERATOR: Can you tell me what happened during the fourth set?

BENOIT PAIRE: You know that tennis is not easy. My beginning of season was not easy. I knew that I was not going to play up to par.

I would like to talk about Wimbledon, however. I would like to know if ATP defends more players or Russia.

This is why I wanted to talk with you guys. Because we are going to play a tournament without any points. When some people had COVID, we didn't say, Oh, okay, we should cancel the tournament altogether.

But then we have three or four Russian players, including Medvedev, and we are rallying against Wimbledon. I think it's a pity, because if we were to listen to all the players, players do not understand this decision. 99% of players, they want to have points and to play the tournament as it was before.

So I want to know if ATP wants to defend players or Russia.

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

Q. On that point, does it mean that you will not take part in Wimbledon? What about other players?

BENOIT PAIRE: I will go there to get my prize money, as I would for an exhibition tournament.

But the question is: Why didn't they talk with players upstream? Yes, when they say there was a council which voted, nobody told us about this. If it's a war between ATP and Wimbledon, it's not nice for us, because we want to play normally.

I'm sorry for Russia and Russians, but they are the ones causing all the trouble. And all the ATP players are actually paying the price.

Medvedev will be No. 1 worldwide. This is absurd. We should actually take position for all the players in the world, and it's the opposite that is being done right now.

Q. Do you feel that you are not actually on the same wavelength, that there are a lot of decisions that actually are damaging the players' conditions?

BENOIT PAIRE: Yes, there is a war in Russia, so there can be some sanctions that can be made. But ATP should defend the majority of players, not four or five players.

All the other players are actually having problems because of this decision. Remember COVID, when three or four players couldn't play because they had COVID because they were locked in their room? They didn't decide to freeze the points. No, that's not the decision that was made.

And I don't understand this. We are all penalized by this. It feels like we are going to an exhibition tournament just to cash a check.

Q. You don't want to talk about the match?

BENOIT PAIRE: I had no press conference. I had to ask for it. Yeah, I'm willing to do so. Since I lost I was told I couldn't have a press conference. That's why I asked to come in.

Q. (Off microphone.)

BENOIT PAIRE: It's true that this year has been tough. For two years things have not been easy for me. I tried to be in form, and every time I play, I have problems. I do a lot of double faults.

Mentally it's not easy. I know how to serve, because when I practice, I can serve. But in my head, things are not difficult. And when I'm under pressure, I have gaps. We can see that during the match. When I lead actually 40-Love, then I make a lot of faults.

My weapon is my serve usually. So when I reach 5-5 and I make so many double faults, this has happened before in the past, but it shows that I have a huge letdown. I really wanted to do well at the French Open, and had I won a match at the French Open, it would have been good for my self-confidence.

Now I have to go back to work. I'm going to have a long break because I have suffered a lot these last months. I have no excuse. I'm just saying I need to go back on track. I'm not really happy in my private life, as well, so I need to find my priorities again.

When I come back, I will try to start from a clean slate.

Q. (Question off microphone.)

BENOIT PAIRE: Had I done an adequate match, I would have gained in self-confidence. It's normal. This is why I'm disappointed.

Had I played against a fierce opponent, I would have said okay. But this is just because I had a lot of letdowns and this is why I lost.

But I could have gone to a fifth set. It's really a pity.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
120640-1-1063 2022-05-24 14:07:00 GMT

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