Notes and Quotes from Day 1 of the 2012 French Open


Nicolas Mahut on his victory over Andy Roddick:

Yes, it was my 10th draw here, final draw here.  We all hope to play such a match on such a court here with the French.  And the French audience are waiting for this.  They want to support the French players.  They want us to beat seeded players.

This was the time for me.  I wanted to make the most of it.  I wanted to stay on the court.  And at the age of 30, there we are.  It happened.

So I played my match.  I was really with the match.  I had my focus.  When there was the Ola, I was there when the crowd was with me, supporting me.  I said, let’s seize this opportunity.

And, by the way, I’d like to thank Guy and those who organized everything.  I was on Suzanne Lenglen, the last match.  It was a gift given to me, and I seized this opportunity.  I’m really happy.

Well, you know, it’s Roland Garros, so on the Suzanne Lenglen Court, in addition to the rest, so it’s almost one of my best matches.

When I saw Roddick, I thought before he would always kill me.  You know, six or seven or eight times I played against him.  At the Queen’s final with the match point, you know what happened.  When I see him in the locker rooms, I’ll feel better.  I won’t feel like the image is a pigeon, that he was shooting at me like a pigeon.

Venus Williams on the challenge of having to learn how to deal with Sjogren’s Syndrome.

Biggest challenge?  I just learned how to live with this.  It’s different.  I have a lot to learn still.  I learned how to just ‑‑ just learning.  So I think that’s my biggest challenge.  I learn a lot every week, especially having to play a professional sport.  So that’s a challenge, just learning to live.

Yeah, a lot of it I have to figure it out.  It’s physical and emotional and all kinds of different things, mental.  So it’s just something that you can only get if you live it.  So I get it.  So I have to learn to laugh sometimes.  Yeah.

Yes, it’s a huge accomplishment.  I tell myself just to try to have fun.

Yeah, so it is.  It’s a big accomplishment for me to be here right now.

I just want to do my best and not be overwhelmed.  Yeah.  So I just ‑‑ I just try my best out there and see what happens.  I do try my best to be ready, and I just ‑‑ I guess the key word is just “try” my best.

When I retire, you’ll know after the last match.  I don’t believe in this stuff of, oh, I’m done, you know.  I’ll just hang it up.  That will be that.  I don’t see myself there for me.  I have this challenge ahead of me to see how far I can get, and see, you know, how much back, you know, I can get.

So that challenge is important for me to face and to have the courage to face it.  So that’s important for me.

I know I can play tennis, so I just need the opportunity.


Mathilde Johansson’s outfit on court was purchased in a store and she was questioned by media about it.

Well, ______ I don’t want any longer.  We couldn’t find ‑‑ well, you know, we couldn’t find an agreement which would be ‑‑ how can I say?  Which would be satisfactory for both parties.  So I thought, I’m going to play with no logo than what they had for me.

I thought, If I go through the first round in the Grand Slam I’m going to have them.  So I thought, No, okay, nothing at all.  I can wear what I want.  It’s a good thing.

It doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want to wear their clothes.  Of course, what I wear is not really a tennis outfit, but at least people see I’m not playing with old outfits.

I’m going to going to advertise this brand otherwise it’s like I’ve been playing for a brand.  Yes, I bought it in a shop.  That’s all.  I wanted this to be a bit shorter.  It was too long for tennis, and that’s all.

At least I can choose my colors.  I’m really okay with this.


Samantha Stosur on being back on red clay:

Yeah, it’s nice to be on a real clay court again and actually feel like you can play more clay court tennis.  I think that’s one of the things that’s probably annoyed a lot of people is that you’re on a clay court but you can’t play real clay court tennis.

Yeah, it’s good to be on these courts again.  I think it is obviously a beautiful court to play on.  The ball definitely gets up high.  You can use your kick serve and topspin groundstrokes.

Yeah, it’s always nice to play on these courts.


Fernando Verdasco on possibly playing Novak Djokovic in the fourth round:

Well, you’ve asked so many questions.  Well, you know, there are still two matches to play, very tough matches to play before I meet Djokovic.  I don’t know who the opponents will be.  They’re still playing.  One’s been qualified.  The other one I don’t know.

So we have to wait a little.  So I don’t know who I’m going to play against next time I play.

Then there’s the third round.  Whoever the opponent is, it’s going to be very difficult this third round.

If I play against Djokovic, he’s No. 1, world No. 1, and I’ll say I have nothing to lose in such a match.  I’ll have to enjoy these extraordinary moments.  I think that Rafa this year has more confidence than ever on clay, more than Djokovic.

If I were to bet on this, I think I’d bet on Rafa, not Djokovic.  But they’re the two best world players, so who knows?  Djokovic already defeated Rafa on clay, and in Rome, for instance, and I think it’s very much open.



Andy Roddick Photo by Beth Wilson for Tennis Panorama News

Andy Roddick on the talk about playing mixed doubles at the Olympics with Serena Williams:

Ask her.  I can’t get ahold of her.  If you see her, ask her for me.

Roddick questioned  again on his movement on court:

Yeah, it sucks just as much as it did three minutes ago, you know, when I said I wasn’t happy with it.  I think that’s a huge, huge part of it.  Just from the first ball to get set I just feel like I get exposed too easily out here.  I feel like I’m not set on most shots.

If you’re not set, it’s tough to get match of a flow going.  When you don’t have much of a flow going, it lends itself to sporadic play.  It all adds up.

You can’t fake it out here.  These are the best tournaments in the world.  It’s tough to lie out here.  My footwork on this stuff is really, really bad.

Jo- Wilfried Tsonga answering questions on his statement that he has nothing to lose at his home Grand Slam.

No, I have nothing to lose.  I have no points to lose.  Last time I lost in the third round.  If I was to lose in the first round, I would lose 90 points, so that’s peanuts.

And, for me, going further in this tournament, it’s wonderful because it’s at home.

But I have nothing to lose.  It’s not my favorite surface at the moment.  So far I haven’t scored many points here.  Trust me, I’ll have more pressure in Wimbledon than here.