Roland-Garros: fewer kilos, a setback worthy of his greatest moments… How did Richard Gasquet win in the first round?

Roland-Garros: fewer kilos, a setback worthy of his greatest moments… How did Richard Gasquet win in the first round?
Roland-Garros: fewer kilos, a setback worthy of his greatest moments… How did Richard Gasquet win in the first round?

Physically sharp and efficient on the court, Richard Gasquet won a superb victory against Borna Coric, in a crazy atmosphere, Sunday May 26 during the first round of Roland-Garros.

Like a symbol. To end this very special Sunday in the best possible way, Richard Gasquet used the shot for which he is known by all lovers of this sport. A true work of art that should be displayed in every museum and taught in every tennis school.

A one-handed backhand so delicious that no one would want to see retired, except perhaps poor Borna Coric (73rd in the world and last finalist of the Open Sud de France), beaten by the former world No.7 7- 6 [5]7-6 [2], 6-4. Which the noisy and numerous spectators of the Court Suzanne-Lenglen – recently covered with a roof – delighted in with joy.

All in a real, hair-raising Davis Cup atmosphere. Like the good old times. “It was a perfect match, there were a lot of people, a lot of atmosphere, it’s a great victory. It’s fabulous for me to manage to win this match”he reacted in the Parisian evening.

A physical rediscovery

I’m glad he goes up the backhand on the match point because I know that’s where I can pass himhe continued. Especially since it became difficult on a physical level, it was still a three and a half hour match.”

However, it is on the physical level that Gasquet surprised everyone. At 37 years old, he has never looked as sharp as he does now, whereas some people might have mocked his paunch a few years ago.

On Sunday, the player trained by his lifelong companion, Julien Cassaigne, multiplied his runs forward without complaining and this was felt in the points afterwards. “When we saw the draw we thought he could do it and it was fantasticsaid his coach. Since January, he has been working with a trainer on his physique, he is careful about what he eats, he is sharp and it shows. He lost two or three kilos and that makes a huge difference when you have to run for more than three hours.”

Sinner and the Jubilee

Add to that a player who plays fair for a very large part of the match, whether on the backhand but also on the flat forehand (47 winning shots in total), a very effective serve… And you obtain the third victory of the season on the main circuit for Richard Gasquet.

A success giving the former player of the France team the right to enjoy a second round resembling a jubilee before its time, against world No.2 Jannik Sinner, if he defeats Christopher Eubanks ( 46th).

To the delight of the main interested party: “I hope it’s going to be a celebration for me. It’s fabulous to be here again on the Central, to be able to play Sinner, it’s exceptional, and I’m going to try to make the most of the chance I have have”. And he didn’t steal it, quite the contrary.

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