J. TSONGA/F. Mayer
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Can you talk about your knee injury, how difficult it was during that time.
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: It was not that hard at the beginning because I was in holidays. But, of course, after few days, few weeks, the game miss me. I missed the game, sorry.
Q. The game missed you, too.
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: I missed the game and it was tough to see my friends play. I was home watching on TV.
But anyway, you know, sometime it's good because it make your mind clear, so after that you come back sometimes stronger. That's what I will try to do.
Q. Are you 100% now?
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: I'm feeling good. I still have some problem with my knee. But the pain is not enough strong, you know, to leave me out of the court.
But I still have a tough match like I played yesterday. After that sometimes, you know, I have a little feeling on my knee. So I have to take care of it, be careful.
I'm not at 100% anyway because I didn't play for two months. So to find back the good shape, it takes time. But I try to play 100% of what I can do.
Q. Could you talk about your recent play against Novak, what you need to do against him differently. You used to have a pretty good record against him, but you lost the last eight times.
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: You know, I lost against him few matches. Some I was really close; some others I was really far. But the only thing I know, I'm sure I can play a better tennis than what I played the other match.
So, you know, I'm looking for this tennis, and that's it. I hope it will come soon if I have to play against him tomorrow.
But of course, you know, he was the No.1 for many, many weeks, and he was playing well, he was confident. I think he lost more matches this year than the other years, so maybe it's an opportunity for me to do my first win if I have to play against him.
Q. Can you talk about today's match.
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: Today I played well. What can I say? Yeah, I played well. That's it. I had some trouble to finish the match. But, yeah, in general I played good tennis.
Q. Both Spain and France have the same amount of players in the top 50. I think it's seven. We tend to think of Spain as the more dominant nation at the top of the game. Why do you think France doesn't get similar recognition?
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: That's a good question (smiling).
Q. Thank you.
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: Of course, I don't have solution. But we do everything to change this statistic that we didn't win a lot of Davis Cup and we don't have players in the top five. Maybe we still need time and is gonna happen.
But for the moment, we have to work and we have to be all together. We have to push each other towards the top or motivate each other towards the top.
We have to work together like the Spanish guys did. They always have dinner together. They always spend time together. They discuss a lot. I think it make Spain, you know, have a really good spirit. Yeah, that's it.
Q. So are you saying you guys are not quite that close; you're more independent of each other?
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: We are close, but we have to be more close (smiling).
Q. Do you think there's a Grand Slam champion amongst you?
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: Yeah, I think we have the potential to do that. But the potential is not enough; we have to do it. We have some players who play semis sometimes. I think we're already able to do a little bit more.
Q. Can you talk about your decision to split with Roger Rasheed? Do you plan on hiring a new coach or going by yourself?
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: You know, I don't want to explain myself about it because we have our own reason, and we will keep it for us.
But, anyway, for me it was a good experience to work with him. I learned a lot. He make me to be a better player anyway, and that's it. And now I'm looking for a new structure around me, and I will tell you when it's going to be fixed.
Q. Do you plan on addressing it while the season is still going or after the season?
JO‑WILFRIED TSONGA: I mean, this is the end of the season anyway, so I will tell you soon.