R. FEDERER/G. Simon
7 6, 7 6
An interview with: GILLES SIMON
Q. Where do you think that match was decided tonight?
GILLES SIMON: Well, he was just more opportunist, I would say. We had a close match. I had a set point in the first, two in the second. It’s just a few points deciding, and he was always really good on these points. He played some great shots. The set point he played this very good backhand down the line in the first set.
I mean, he just played always good in the right moment, and then he won the match (smiling).
Q. Do you think it’s just confidence? Is that something that confidence can do in those big moments?
GILLES SIMON: Well, we know he’s very good for this. Maybe he’s the best in the world. Every time he has an opportunity, he’s really good at taking it.
He’s putting a lot of pressure. He’s always showing you that he is ready to be really aggressive on every shot. So he keeps you under pressure. One more time I think, yeah, he won a lot of match, so many tournaments, so many slams, so many Masters Series.
When you play a close match with him, maybe he just have this feeling that he will somehow survive the match every time.
But I don’t know. I mean, I just focus on what I have to do on my side. I just try my best today, and it was not enough.
Q. Were you happy with the indoor conditions?
GILLES SIMON: Yes. Today it was really windy. It was impossible to play on the warmup outside. It’s a bit better on the stadium.
But I think we played both a great match in the semis yesterday. We played our best tennis. It’s better for the show if you have a good final with a high level instead of a strange match with just players trying to somehow put the ball in the court.
So, yeah, I was happy with the indoor conditions.
Q. What was the problem when you went off for treatment at the end of the first set?
GILLES SIMON: Well, I had a pain on the left hamstring. I had to compensate the whole week. I mean, I started with a terrible back, then the abs, now this. It was about time to stop, I think.
But it was hard to serve for me today. I think you could noticed it. But one more time, it’s the final, you just try not to think about it, just try to focus on what you have to do. Still one more time I had enough chances to win the match.
Even with this, I was 5 4 on serve also. I just couldn’t make it. It’s not because of that I lost the match.
Q. For many players, they might find it a little difficult playing in Asia with the culture, food, language difference. You played fantastic in Asia this year. Does that make Asia a more enjoyable place for you in the future maybe?
GILLES SIMON: Well, it has been hard to play in Asia the last years, that’s true. But not because it’s in Asia. I mean, I like to come here. It’s just that it’s a moment of the season that sometimes starts to be hard for the players. It’s already 10 months we are on the tour going place to place. Sometimes you are just physically not ready to go one more time for a swing like three weeks.
The season has been already really demanding. This year I was physically okay, even if I one more time had some problems, but nothing terrible. I felt, yeah, I could give my best on the court. Unfortunately, last year that was not the case.
Q. Obviously you played Roger in 2008, round robin Masters Cup in Shanghai. Apart from the result, what was the difference?
GILLES SIMON: Well, the first thing, every time I play him, I have to play first my tennis and to play good. Then I know if I play good, it’s going to be a close match anyway.
We played him seven times, and only one was a killing for him. 2 1 in Rome. All the other matches were always really close.
One more time, it’s just a few points deciding the winner. You don’t have many opportunities. Today I had enough and I just didn’t take it. I’m just sad about it.
But there is nothing to change really. There is nothing really different. Just a few shots. Today I was not good enough to play the right shot at the right time.
Q. As a French player, do you think you are romantic as for the ladies here? I wonder, how does your character affect your match?
GILLES SIMON: I don’t think I’m romantic. I think my wife would quit me if I start to be (smiling).
No, I’m just think a lot. Maybe think too much sometimes about things. But I’m a very rational guy.
Q. Can you tell us the difference between playing Roger when he was younger and playing Roger now?
GILLES SIMON: I don’t see many difference. He’s still serving the same. I feel he’s even more aggressive. Before he really wanted to prove that he was the best on every part of the game. Sometimes he was too prone to change. Now it’s not the case anymore.
I feel today I was playing, for example, very good from the baseline. Then I could see that he was trying to come more often to the net, playing more serve and volley. He’s realizing better what is happening on the court.
But he’s still the same. He still has the same strengths, this fantastic serve and this huge forehand. But now I know him, so I’m not scared anymore when I have to play him. But it’s still so hard to beat him.