Seventh seed Gael Monfils reached the quarterfinals at Sofia Open 2019. He eased through the second round after 7:5, 6:3 against Mikhail Kukushkin. The French looked happy after the match.
Please, tell us how do you feel here in Sofia? Do you like the tournament, the atmosphere?
Great. Great. I was expecting a great venue. Last time I had good memories here. I know the spirits. And obviously, with the first match, people here are behind me. The Centre court is lovely. There are not many places with so beautiful Centre court like this. I am very happy.
What do you think about the surface?
It is good for playing. It depends a lot from the racquets. It is a bit tough to control the ball and the bounce stays very low. The court is actually maybe a little bit slower. But the ball is flying a lot. I find it very hard to control it.
You said after your first match that you have to improve your serve. Did you improve it?
Yes, I think I improved it a little bit. I had a better percentage. I found my rhythm better. I didn’t make so many double faults. I am doing a lot of double faults because it is indoors. I feel confident with my serve. So I try to use my second serve. Definitely, I want it to be even better at the quarter-final because I can serve a bit better. And when I say better I mean with more consistency. Maybe not doing so many aces, but more consistent.
How important is for you to have fun on the court and do you feel bored often?
For me, the most important thing when I step on the court is to have fun. I think we are blessed. Sometimes people don’t realize how blessed we are to do this amazing sport. And this sport is a job, obviously, but the big thing is that it is a sport. When I was a kid my parents always tell me: “It is Wednesday, go on tennis and just have fun. And just be yourself.” I think I kept it all my life. I kept it because it is important. Tennis is hard. We sacrifice a lot. I think people don’t realize how much we sacrifice. But for me, if I am not enjoying the court, I will be sad. I think I will stop.