Roger Federer opened his Australian Open campaign beating Aljaz Bedene 6-3 6-4 6-3. The courts, do you think it's slower than last year, faster or about the same speed? 'The same', Federer replied in press conference.
'I'd say it's the same. But last year is a long time ago. I feel it's pretty much the same. It felt fast tonight. Normally at the nighttime it feels slower. But I think Bedene and myself, we were really trying to take the ball early, go through our shots.
It felt pretty fast out there tonight. That's how it also felt last year. When you do serve well and connect well on shots, you get rewarded for it.' Monfils is playing against Djokovic in the next round Thursday. He says top players, when they come back, even after six months, they're as good as they were before just because they come back and they're ready. 'Is it that easy? I don't know.
For me it wasn't simple either. It always looks that way when we do return. It just seems logical. I do maybe think if you put Rafa, myself and Novak together, I think because we have margin maybe against a lot of the players normally, when we do come back, we can find that level maybe.
Even though we're not feeling good, we can still find a way and eventually play good again, whereas others would struggle early on and it becomes more difficult. Yeah, I think then because of our results, we just back ourselves.
Mentally and physically we're going to be there. The question is, is our game good enough. I think that's why it's very interesting to follow the comebacks of the great players that have been injured: Stan, Novak of course this week.
This is a big test to play Gael in the second round. I think it's going to be very interesting. I didn't see much of Novak today, but the result shows he was breezing. But this one's clearly a big test against Gael.
Follow that one closely.' Since you turned pro, you've done something like three thousand on-court interviews after matches. How do you keep up your interest, your enthusiasm for it? 'I don't know. I don't know how I do it.
Well, number one, I think talking in different languages is always an interesting thing. So that's challenging for me, trying to get the sentences right, to be quite honest. Swiss German it's simple. It's where I feel most comfortable, clearly.
But I kind of grew up with it a little bit, so I know how to handle it now and also take joy out of it. I think it is important. I try to see the press as sort of a bridge. Hopefully it's a good story for the people who read it or are watching it on TV, that they think, I don't know, tennis is a great sport, it's actually interesting.
I'm giving them maybe more than just like, My forehand worked well, the second serve I have to improve. You walk away. That was boring. I always try to give it a little bit something extra. I've always tried to remain myself as well.
I feel they're fearful of you guys just because they feel they have been misinterpreted in the past. I felt that in the very beginning of my career.' Apparently 92 million people saw your video with the pasta, with Barilla.
I think there were 60 million on YouTube, 30 on Facebook, I don't know. How long did it take you? 'For the whole thing, 10 hours, in Milano. Which was more difficult? They wanted me to be careful when I chopped fast. Then I pretended not to look sometimes even.
That was a bit weird. No, it was good fun. The thing with the leaf at the end, with the basil... maybe 45 minutes for that sequence. A lot of focusing.' It's meant to be a hot one on Thursday. Will you be putting a request for another night match? 'If I can choose, I always prefer to be in the same.
Either I play all day, all night. I know it's not always possible. I'll ask for a night match just because I played night tonight. It's just easier, to be honest, rather than going from night to day to night to day to night to day.
It's also good for the rhythm, the feel on the court. At the end, the tournament makes the call. They have a lot of matches. Sure, you can put in requests. At this level of the tournament, so many guys, you don't know what's going to happen.'