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Old 03-08-2004, 07:34 PM   #1
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Default Interview Arnaud tennis Mag

Arnaud gave a long interview to the new tennis mag. It's very interesrting, and funny too. I love this guy !!

Sorry, it was long to type, so it was out of question I translate it...lol


==) En battant Ljubicic pour remporter le point décisif contre la Croatie, vous avez parlé d’une émotion inoubliable. Plus forte, par exemple, qu’en battant Roddick en ½ finale en 2002 au stade RG ?
Arnaud Clément : Contre Ljubicic, le point était décisif, c’était le dimanche et la France allait en ¼ de finale. C’est particulier, mais en fait c’est la coupe Davis qui est particulière. Il n’y a pas un match que je ne pourrais oublier. Par exemple contre Rosset, à neuchatel, 15/13 au 5ème, 5 h40 de match. Alors bien sur, Roddick sur le central de RG, avec des tribunes pleines, un grand soleil… on ne peut pas rêver d’un plus grand jour.

Vous avez un excellent bilan en CD. Qu’est-ce qui fait de vous un joueur aussi solide dans cette épreuve ?
- Chaque début d’année je me fixe des objectifs prioritaires. En ce moment c’est plus en terme de classement. Mais en général c’est plus : CD + grands chelems. Je me prépare en conséquence ; pour être prêt si possible le bon jour.

Se préparer ainsi toute l’année, c’est impossible ?
- Oui. D’ailleurs, je me prépare plutôt à des matches longs en 5 sets, ce qui me convient. Un match en 3 sets, ça va très vite, on peut perdre sans avoir le temps de réagir. En Grand chelem et en CD, c’est impossible.

Vous semblez être un modèle d’équipier. Vous avouez pourtant avoir besoin, vous aussi, d’être recadré des fois. C’est si difficile pour un joueur de tennis d’être collectif quand il arrive en CD ?
- Non, il ne faut pas exagérer. Au contraire, le collectif, c’est plus facile, ça fait du bien. De pouvoir, pour une fois, s’appuyer sur les autres, les joueurs le capitaine, le staff… dans notre équipe, tout le monde partage les mêmes valeurs, c’est agréable.

Vous avez du faire preuve d’esprit de sacrifice quand vous vous êtes déclaré inapte à joueur en finale contre la Russie. Pour vous c’était la 2ème finale manquée de suite…
- Mais non, ce n’est pas du sacrifice ! C’est tout à fait normal. Quand on me dit « quel beau geste ! », je me dis « n’importe quoi ! ». Si j’ai mal, je ne peux pas rentrer sur le terrain, point ! Je ne peux pas trahir mon pays. A cet instant là, je pense plus à l’équipe qu’à mon pays, c’est vrai, mais quand même ! Cette question me dérange. Je ne veux pas exagérer, mais c’est presque une insulte. Est-ce qu’on pourrait penser que je pourrais agir autrement ? Mais je sais bien que les gens disent ça pour me consoler, en pensant que j’ai eu de la peine… et là, ils ont raison…

Vous ne tarissez pas d’éloges sur Guy Forget. Qu’est-ce qui fait de lui, à vos yeux, un capitaine d’exception ?
- D’abord, je n’ai encore connu que lui comme capitaine. Depuis mes débuts, j’ai vu que Guy a beaucoup appris. Chaque année, il est meilleur. A certains moments, il faut être cool, à d’autres, il faut être strict. Ce n’est pas facile et Guy sait prendre ses responsabilités. Ses choix sont cohérents, et il sait les faire admettre. C’est pour ça que quand on est 5ème joueur, c’est plus facile à accepter. De même que quand on est désigné pour joueur, on se dit que Guy pense vraiment qu’on peut rapporter des points, ça met en confiance. A part ça, Guy nous l’a dit : quand il sentira qu’il n’aura plus la confiance des joueurs, il partira.

Si ce jour arrive, tout le monde sait que le poste intéresse Pioline ; vous imaginez Cédric en capitaine ?
- Non (sourire). Non, parce que je vois Guy. Je sais bien pourtant qu’il y aura d’autres bons capitaines par la suite. Mais moi, là, j’ai du mal à imaginer un autre à la place de Guy. Ce n’est pas lié à la personnalité de Cédric (menteur ! lol)

Certains techniciens pensent que le rôle des psychologues n’est pas utile, en disant que quand le physique et la technique sont là, un joueur est bien dans sa tête. Qu’en pensez-vous ?
- Je ne peux pas généraliser, mais c’est tout à fait mon cas. A un moment, j’ai vu un préparateur mental. Le problème c’est que je suis incapable de me confier à quelqu'un que je ne connais pas ; forcément, si on veut que ce soit efficace, il faut aborder de sujets personnels, faire des confidences. Et ça, c’est impossible. Pour moi, le psy était un étranger, et au bout d’une ½ heure, j’ai compris.
Cela dit, j’ai quand même l’impression qu’il y a des trucs en moi et qu’il faut que ça sorte. Je le fais avec mon entraîneur, on est toute l’année ensemble et là j’ai confiance.

A vous observer, on vous sent bien dans votre peau, heureux d’être sur le court…
- Globalement, oui c’est vrai. Mon métier c’est ma passion. Je gagne, très, très bien ma vie, en faisant ce que j’aime. J’ai autour de moi toute ma famille, tous ceux que j’aime. Je suis conscient que c’est plus important encore que le tennis. L’autre jour à Rotterdam, nous avons appris que le neveu d’un ami de Rémi, âgé de 14 ans, venait de mourir d’un cancer. Alors bon, jouer contre Federer, on en fait pas toute une montagne…oui je me sens bien dans ma peau, dans ma vie, tout va bien.

Auprès de vous, il y a notamment Camille Pin, votre petite amie. Elle doit jouer un grand rôle dans votre équilibre affectif…
- Oui, surtout parce que Camille est très calme, très posée. Ca fait plus de 3 ans qu’on est ensemble ; le gros avantage c’est qu’elle fait la même chose que moi. Elle est consciente des sacrifices, notamment au niveau des voyages et des absences. Ce n’est pas toujours évident, mais on sait ce qu’on vit tous les 2, ça aide énormément…

Autre personne importante, Rémi Barbarin…
- Rémi, il a des convictions, il les défend. Il sait transmettre ses idées. On sent son engagement total, c’est un gros travailleur, il adore ce qu’il fait. Ces derniers, comme Dip était blessé, il s’occupait plus de moi, mais quand on joue tous les 2, il n’a pas un moment de répit avec nos programmes.

Peut-on considérer que vous étiez copains avant de travailler ensemble ?
- Oui, oui …

Vous avez déjà travailler avec un ami d’enfance, Philippe Rosant. Qu’avez-vous pensé des propos de Guy Forget, qui avait dit que les joueurs feraient mieux de prendre des coaches plutôt que des copains ?
- J’ai pas choisi Philippe et Rémi pour cela, mais parce qu’ils étaient compétents. Avec Philippe, je suis arrivé 10ème mondial, et avec Rémi, je progresse encore beaucoup. Mais c’est vrai que j’ai besoin d’avoir des affinités avec mon entraîneur, même si ce n’est pas la priorité. J’ai besoin d’avoir confiance. Je passe plus de temps avec Rémi qu’avec Camille ! Par rapport à ce qu’a dit Guy, je prend plus ça comme un conseil que comme une critique. Il n’a fait que dire la vérité : l’engagement d’un entraîneur, c’est la preuve qu’on est motivés. Si on veut faire des économies là-dessus, c’est qu’on n’est pas motivé.

A quand remonte votre dernier « savon » ? (= dispute)
- La dernière grosse engueulade, c’est à Long Island, l’an dernier. A cause de mon attitude. Cet été là, je n’étais plus réceptif à ce qu’il disait. Mais le lendemain, on a discuté et ça s’est arrangé…

Quelques jours plus tard, vous perdiez contre Gregory Carraz au 1er tour à l’Us open …
- Oui, la période était difficile pour moi, j’ai fait n’importe quoi… et Rémi, il s’investit tellement, quand il a vu que je ne jouais pas vraiment, il était énervé, ça se comprend.

Avez-vous l’impression, à votre âge, d’être allé au-delà de ce que vous espériez, au tout début ?
- Ah oui, ça on peut le dire ! (rires), je l’ai déjà dit, mais à la question de la ligue Provence, quand j’avais 15 ans, « quels sont vos objectifs ? », j’avais répondu « dans les 1000 » ; certains avaient répondu « dans les 20, dans les 100 », moi c’était dans les 1000. Je n’avais jamais pensé que je pourrais aller aussi loin…alors, arriver dans les 15, et faire une finale de grand chelem…

Vous imaginez-vous en vainqueur de grand chelem ?
- Non. Aujourd’hui, je ne m’y vois pas. Je sais que je peux tenir physiquement pendant 2 semaines, ce qui est important, mais cela dit, il y a plusieurs classes de joueurs. La classe des Sampras, Agassi, Federer, Ferrero, d’un Roddick quand son service marche il est monstrueux… Ce sont des joueurs qui peuvent gagner un grand chelem sur leur pur talent. Moi, si demain je joue l’un de ces gars-là, qu’il est à son top, il faut que je joue à la perfection absolue pour avoir une chance. Donc ça dépend plus de mon adversaire que de moi (it’s so t rue !)

Vous n’avez pas tendance à vous sous-estimer ?
- Oui, peut-être, inconsciemment. Et pourtant, je le connais bien mon inconscient… (Sourire). Finalement, dans le tennis, je suis allé de bonne surprise en bonne surprise. En évitant d’être trop ambitieux, j’évite d’être déçu.

Cette tendance au profile bas, on la retrouve aussi chez votre grand copain Sébastien Grosjean. Il est N° 1 français, mais il dit souvent, en équipe de CD : leader, moi, non. Vous ne pensez pas que le tennis français a besoin d’un N°1 qui se comporte comme un leader ?
- Mais Sébastien se comporte comme un leader avec nous. Là où ça compte le plus, sur le court. Il a pris de l’autorité avec les années. Il sait maintenant partager ses émotions avec le public. Et il donne son point de vue. Il se fait respecter, croyez-moi.

Vous ne pensez pas que Guy Forget aurait besoin d’un leader qui fasse l’intermédiaire entre le capitaine et les joueurs ?
- Mais c’est ce qui se passe aujourd’hui, Seb il faut voir comme il assure. 2 années de suite dans les 10 premiers, des ½ finales de GC, c’est lui le leader, et il lui arrive de dire des choses au joueurs au nom de Guy…

Vous êtes resté très proche de vos parents ? Vous continuez de téléphoner à votre mère après chacun de vos matches ?
- Oui, c’est la première chose que je fais.
Quand j’ai perdu, je suis énervé, j’appelle très vite pour donner le résultat, et je rappelle plus tranquillement quand je suis calmé. Je fais ça depuis toujours. Il fait que je l’appelle, et quelque soit l’heure ou le décalage horaire. Mon père, lui, il suit les matches à distance, sur internet ou ailleurs. Mais ma mère attend que le téléphone sonne ; souvent, elle ne dort pas, elle attend.

Vous ne vous sentez pas encore un peu « petit garçon » ? (LOL)
- Par moment, si bien sûr. Et c’est très bien. Les rares moments où je peux dormir à Aix, chez mes parents, j’aime bien être à la maison, me faire dorloter (to be pampered), je touche à rien, je suis le roi, c’est fantastique. Je suis le petit dernier, je faire des caprices, tout va bien. (aww LOOL). Ca ne me dérange pas de me sentir encore un peu gamin, au contraire. Quant à savoir si ça peut être un handicap sur le court, je ne crois pas. ( it’s amazing, the way he has to say that so naturally, he doesn’t care about what people could think, even that he’s proud…lol)

Vous êtes un habitué des déclarations étonnantes, des formules originales. Ce n’est pas un jeu parfois, ou un forme de protection ?
- Peut-être oui. Mais ce n’est pas un jeu par rapport aux médias. Je peux dire les mêmes absurdités et autres formules à Camille, à mon frère, mes parents… je pense être plutôt naturel quand je parle à la presse. Ce qui ressort, c’est ma personnalité, tout simplement.

Vous n’êtes pas non plus du genre à refuser de faire la fête, et même de boire à quelques occasions… c’est dans votre nature, de vous « lâcher » comme ça ?
- Là où je suis meilleur qu’autre fois dans ma carrière, c’est justement dans ma maîtrise de ces moments-là. Oui, quand je sors, j’aime bien être avec mes potes, éventuellement boire un coup ou même plusieurs, quitte à prendre une petite cuite. Il n’y a pas de problème. Mais il ne faut pas faire ça à n’importe quel moment ; Ca peut être dangereux, on peut avoir des blessures. Mais quand c’est possible, oui, je suis d’avis de se « lâcher ». C’est bénéfique pour l’esprit. Evidemment, il a y d’autres moyens que de boire ces coups avec ses copains. Comme par exemple aller sur une île pendant une semaine. On dort, 12 heures par jour, on n’a rien à faire. On sirote (boit) un truc sur la plage et on bronze. (LOL)

Vous gagnez très bien votre vie. Vous avez déclaré qu’avec l’argent et la célébrité, il était très facile de « péter les plombs ». Vous vous sentez protégé de cela ?
- Je ne fais pas de folie avec l’argent. Si j’ai envie de m’acheter une voiture de sport, je le fais. Je ne vois pas de mal à ça, ce n’est pas plus tard, avec des enfants, que je pourrai le faire. Tout en faisant le bon compromis entre le plaisir que ça va me procurer et la raison qu’il faut savoir garder. Dans tout cela, j’ai mes parents, qui peuvent me remettre les pieds sur terre. Et même si on s’habitue à l’argent, je ne vis pas exclusivement au milieu des privilégiés. J’ai encore beaucoup de copains de lycée, donc je n’ai pas perdu le sens des réalités.

Votre signature, aujourd’hui, ce sont vos lunettes et vos bandanas. Votre look est vraiment unique. Vous aimez vous faire remarquer ?
- Non, je suis astigmate depuis que j’ai 17-18 ans. Mais ma vue n’est pas nulle, j’ai 9 et 9 aux 2 yeux. Avec les lunettes, je vois juste un peu mieux. Dans certaines conditions, quand c’est humide ou qu’il fait froid, c’est plus une gêne qu’autre chose.

Vous changez souvent de chemise et de bandeaux dans un match. Pourquoi ?
- Les gens croient parfois que je fais exprès d’assortir mes chemises et mes bandeaux, mais non, jamais. Avant le match, je définis juste dans quel ordre je vais mettre mes chemises, c’est tout. Tout est bien rangé dans mon sac, je n’y met rien en vrac. Pour les couleurs, je n’ai pas d’ordre en particulier, sauf pour le rose, que j’aime bien mettre dans les 5èmes sets. C’est un des premiers que j’ai eu, je le met rarement.

Yannick Noah a déclaré récemment que les meilleurs joueurs français ne donnaient pas assez leur point de vue auprès des dirigeants de la FFT. Qu’en pensez-vous ?
- Moi, je n’étais pas d’accord avec la manière dont on a associé Richard Gasquet et Tarik Benhabiles, et je l’ai dit a Christian Bimes. Je n’ai rien contre Tarik, mais je pensais que ce n’était pas au président de s’occuper de ça. Mais ça ne veut pas dire que chaque fois que j’aurai quelque chose à dire, je vais pousser un coup de gueule. Et pour revenir sur le cas de Richard, je pense que nous avons en France quantité d’excellents entraîneurs et que ce n’est pas la peine d’aller chercher ailleurs.

Vous allez bientôt retrouver les Suisses en CD. Roger Federer, vous le connaissez bien, vous l’avez même battu. Qu’avez-vous à dire sur lui, en tant que joueur ?
- Avec Scud, on appelle Federer « Harry Potter ». Des fois, il fait des coups avec une telle facilité que c’est comme de la sorcellerie. Par exemple, une série de demi-volées du fond du court, ça paraît impossible, et il y arrive comme si c’était évident. Donc, avec Roger, ils ont une arme incontestable en Suisse. S’il est à son top, il sera très dur à battre en simple. Mais on peut le déranger, et il ne peut pas gagner le rencontre à lui tout seul. Il y a 3 autres points à prendre. Nous, on a Sébastien, il sera revenu, ça sera bien.

Les Français vont quasiment jouer à domicile, puisque vous habitez presque tous en Suisse. C’est un peu bizarre, non ?
- Oui, c’est vrai. Mais je trouve dommage qu’en étant domicilié en France, les sportifs de haut niveau soient obligés de payer 2 fois des impôts : dans le pays où l’on a gagné l’argent, et en France. Nos carrières ne durent pas longtemps. Cela dit, j’aime bien la Suisse, où j’ai un appartement avec une très belle vue, je m’y plais beaucoup. Après des semaines de tournoi et de voyages, c’est parfait pour se reposer. On se voit entre Français régulièrement. Je m’entraîne dans le Canton de Genève, au Tennis du Bois Carré. Camille aime bien aussi. Franchement c’est dur de ne pas aimer.
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Old 03-09-2004, 12:11 AM   #2
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MERCI BEAUCOUP BEAUCOUP BEACOUP MARINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Such a great interview...he's SO natural!!!!
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Old 03-09-2004, 12:50 PM   #3
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can we find it somewhere in english??????
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Old 03-09-2004, 12:51 PM   #4
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this interview is simply great,Arnaud is such a cutie!!!
Thanks a lot Marine for posting!
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Old 03-09-2004, 10:41 PM   #5
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i may translate it on the weekend steph
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Old 03-16-2004, 11:18 AM   #6
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i´m still waiting for the translation will you still do it esther or is it to much work?
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Old 03-16-2004, 06:13 PM   #7
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Steph, I'm in the middle of it. Hold on!
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Old 03-16-2004, 08:37 PM   #8
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MANY THANKS MARINE! It must have taken a long time to type that, but it's so worth it! *hugs*

As promised! I did it in a rush, so please forgive the errors.



By beating Ljubicic to win the decisive point against Croatia, you spoke about an unforgettable emotion. Greater, for example, than beating Roddick in the ½ final in 2002 at RG?
Arnaud Clément: Against Ljubicic, the point was decisive, it was Sunday and France went in to the ¼ final. It is particular, but it’s the Davis Cup which is special. There is not a match I would forget. For example against Rosset, to neuchatel, 15/13 in the 5th, 5 h40 of the match. Then of course, Roddick on the centre court of RG, with a full crowd, a big sun... one cannot dream of a greater day.

You have an excellent record in DC. What makes you such a solid player in this test? –
At the beginning of each year I set down my top priorities. At the moment it is more in terms of classification. But in general it is more: DC + grand slams. I prepare consequently; to be ready if possible.

To prepare like this is all the year round, is it impossible? –
Yes. Moreover, I prepare with long matches in 5 sets, which suits me. In a match in 3 sets, that goes very quickly, you can lose without having time to react. In grand slam and DC, it is impossible.

You seem to be the model of a team-player. You however acknowledge you also need, to be recadré (?) at times. It is so difficult for a tennis player to be part of a group when it comes to DC? –
No, one should not exaggerate. On the contrary, the group is easier, it does us good. To be able for once, to depend on others, the players, the captain, staff... in our team, everyone shares the same values, it is pleasant.

You showed the spirit of sacrifice when you declared yourself unfit to play against Russia in the final. For you it was the 2nd final that lacked completion... –
But no, it is not sacrifice! It is completely normal. When one tells me "what a beautiful gesture! ", I say to myself " nothing! ". If I’m poorly, I cannot return on the ground at all! I cannot betray my country. At that moment, I was thinking more of the team than of my country, it is true, but nevertheless! This question disturbs me. I do not want to exaggerate, but it is almost an insult. How could anyone think that I could act differently? But I know that people say that to comfort me, by thinking that I had sorrow... and there they are right...

You do not hold back praises of Guy Forget. What makes him, in your eyes, an exceptional captain? –
Firstly, I only know him as the captain. Since my beginnings, I saw that Guy learned much. Each year, it is better. At certain moments, it is necessary to be cool, for others, it is necessary to be strict. It is not easy and Guy can take his responsibilities. His choices are coherent, and he can make them. Because of that, when you are a 5th player, it is easier to accept. Just as when you are designated for player, you know that Guy really thinks that you can win points, that gives you confidence. Besides that, Guy said it to us: when he feels that he doesn’t have the confidence of the players, he will leave.

If this day arrives, everyone knows that the position interests Pioline; you imagine Cédric as a captain? –
No (smiling). No, because I see Guy. However, I know that there will be other good captains thereafter. But me, I don’t like to imagine another in the place of Guy. It is not related to the personality of Cédric (lying! lol)

Certain technicians think that the role of the psychologists is not useful, by saying that when the physique and the technique are there, a player is well in his head. What do you think about it? –
I cannot generalize, but it is completely my case. At one time, I saw a psychologist (maybe just a psychological coach?). The problem it is that I am unable to entrust to me to somebody whom I do not know; inevitably, as it is wanted as it is effective, it is necessary to tackle personal subjects, to confide. And that, it is impossible. For me, the psychologist was a stranger, and at the end of a ½ hour, I understood. However, I have the impression nevertheless that there are things in me and that it is necessary to sort that. I do it with my trainer, we are together all year round and there I have trust.

Looking at you, you appear comfortable in your skin, happy to be on the court... –
All in all, yes it is true. My profession is my passion. I gain a lot in my life by doing what I like. I have all my family around me, all those that I love. I am conscious that this is more important than tennis. The other day in Rotterdam, we heard that the nephew of a friend of Remi’s, 14 years old, died of cancer. Then, to play against Federer, one does not make a big deal out of it... yes I feel comfortable in my skin, in my life, all goes well.

Close to you, there is in particular Camille Pin, your girl friend. She must play a great part in your emotional balance... –
Yes, especially because Camille is very calm, very settled. We have been together more than 3 years; the big advantage it is that she does the same thing as me. She knows the sacrifices, in particular on the level of the traveling and the absences. It is not always obvious, but knowing what each other does, that helps enormously

Another important person, Remi Barbarin... –
Remi, he has convictions, he stands by them. He can transmit his ideas. You feel his total commitment, he is a hard worker, he adores what it does. Lately, as Dip was injured, he spent more time with me, but when both of us are playing, he does not have a moment of respite with our programs.

Would you say that you were buddies before working together? –
Yes, yes.......

You have already to work with a childhood friend, Philippe Rosant. What did you think of the remarks of Guy Forget, who had said that the players would do better taking on coaches rather than buddies? –
I did not choose Philippe and Remi for that, but because they were qualified. With Philippe, I got to 10th world, and with Remi, I’m still progressing. But it is true that I need to have affinities with my trainer, even if it is not the priority. I need to have confidence. I spend more time with Remi than with Camille! Compared to what Guy said, I take that more like a council that like a criticism. He did nothing but say the truth: the engagement of a trainer, it is the proof that one is motivated. If you are trying to save money, you are not motivated.

What was your last "soap"? (= argument) –
the last big slanging match, was at Long Island, last year. Because of my attitude. Last summer there, I wasn’t very receptive to what he said. But the following day, we discussed it and that was sorted... (So funny, Leslie was there. She said Remi was not happy.)

A few days later, you lost against Gregory Carraz in the first round of the USO. –
Yes, the period was difficult for me, I did nothing... and Remi, he invests himself so much, when he saw that I really did not play well, he was irritated, that is understandable.

Do you have the impression, at your age, to have gone beyond what you hope for, with the whole beginning? –
Ah yes, you could say that! (laughter), did I already say it, but in answer to the question of the Provence league, when I was 15 years old, "what are your objectives? ", I had answered " in the top 1000 "; some had answered "in the top 20, in the 100", me it was in the top 1000. I had never thought that I could go further.... then, to make it in the top 15, and make the final of grand slam...

Do you think like a winner of grand slam? –
No. Today, I do not see myself there. I know that I can hold it together physically during 2 weeks, which is important, but however, there are several classes of players. The class of Sampras, Agassi, Federer, Ferrero, or Roddick, his serve is monstrous... They are players who can gain a grand slam purely on their talent. Me, tomorrow I play one of these guys, who it is at the top, it is necessary that I play absolutely perfectly to have a chance. Therefore it depends more on my adversary than on me (it' s so true!)

Do you not tend to underestimate yourself? –
Yes, perhaps, unconsciously. And yet, I know my unconscious well..... (smiles). Finally, in tennis, I go from good surprise to good surprise. While avoiding being too ambitious, I avoid being disappointed.

This tendency to keep a low profile, one also finds it in your buddy Sebastien Grosjean. He is the N° 1 Frenchman, but he often says, he is not the leader in DC You do not think that French tennis needs a N°1 who behaves like a leader? –
But Sebastien does behave like a leader with us. Where it counts the most, on the court. He took authority with the years. He can now share its emotions with the public. And he gives his point of view. He is respected, believe me.

You do not think that Guy Forget would need a leader who forms the link between the captain and the players? –
But that is what happens today, Seb, you have to see him assured. 2 years in a row in the top 10 , ½ final of GS, he is the leader, and it’s his job to say things to the players in the name of Guy...

You remained very near to your parents? You continue to telephone to your mother after each one of your matches? –
Yes, it is the first thing I do. When I lose, I am irritated, I call very quickly to give the result, and I call again more quietly when I have calmed down. I have always done that. They make me, and sometimes it is the late or with the time difference. My father follows the matches from afar, on Internet or elsewhere. But my mother waits until the telephone rings; often, she does not sleep, she waits.

You do not feel you are a little bit like a "little boy"? (LOL) –
At times, of course. And it is good. The rare moments when I can sleep in Aix, at my parent’s, I like to be at the house, to be pampered, I don’t lift a finger, I am the king, it is fantastic. I am the youngest, I make whims, all goes well (aww LOOL). It does not disturb me to still feel like a little kid, on the contrary. As for knowing if that can be a handicap on the court, I do not believe so (it’s amazing, the way he has to say that so naturally, he doesn’t care about what people could think, even that he’s proud…lol)

You are accustomed to making astonishing declarations, original phrases. It is not a game sometimes, or a form of protection? –
Perhaps yes. But it is not a game with the media. I can say the same nonsenses and other phrases with Camille, my brother, my parents... I think I am rather natural when I talk to the press. What comes out, is simply my personality.

You are not the kind to refuse to have fun at the party, and even drinking on some occasions... is it in your nature, "to let loose" like that? –
At this time, better than at any other time in my career, I am precisely in my control of these moments. Yes, when I ‘m away, I like to be with my pals, to possibly drink a shot or several, even if it means getting a bit drunk. There is no problem. But one should not do that all the time; It can be dangerous, you can get injuries. But when it is possible, yes, I like to “let loose". It is beneficial for the spirit. Obviously, there are other ways to drink with your buddies. Such as, for example, going on holiday for a week. You sleep, 12 hours per day, you have nothing to do. You sip a drink on the beach and you get a tan. (LOL)

You earn your living well. You declared that with the money and the celebrity, it was very easy to "péter leads". (? Waste it away? ) You feel protected from that? –
I do not go mad with the money. If I want to buy a sports car, I do it. I do not see anything bad about that, later on, with children, I wouldn’t be able to do it. I make the compromise between providing pleasure and the reason that it is necessary to save. In all that, I have my parents, who keep my feet on ground. And even if one is accustomed to the money, I do not live exclusively in the medium of the privileged people. I still have many buddies from college, therefore I did not lose the perspective on the real world.

Your signature is your glasses and your bandanas. Your look is really unique. You like to stand out? –
Not, I am astigmatic since I was 17-18 years. But my sight is not very bad, I have 9 and 9 in the 2 eyes. With the glasses, I see just a little better. Under certain conditions, when it is wet or that the weather is cold, it is more an embarrassment which is another thing.

You often change shirt and bandanas in a match. Why? –
people think that I purposely match my shirts and my bandanas, but no, never. Before the match, I just decide in which order I will put on my shirts, it is all. All is well arranged in my bag, I do not put anything in it in bulk. For the colors, I do not have an order in particular, except for the pink, which I like to put in the 5th sets. It is one of the first I had, I seldom put it on.

Yannick Noah said recently that the top French players did not give their point of view to the leaders of the FFT enough. What do you think about it? –
Me, I did not agree with the way in which one associated Richard Gasquet and Tarik Benhabiles, and I said he has Christian Bimes. I do not have anything against Tarik, but I thought that it was not for the president to occupy himself with that. But that does not mean every time I have something to say, I will speak up. And to reconsider the case of Richard, I think that in France we have a quantity of excellent trainers and that it is not worth it to go to look elsewhere.

You soon will face the Swiss in DC. Roger Federer, you know him well, you even beat him. What do you have to say about him, as a player? –
With Scud, we call Federer "Harry Potter". At times, he makes shots in such a way that it is like sorcery. For example, a series of short volleys, that appear impossible, and he arrives there as if it were obvious. Therefore, with Roger, they have an undeniable weapon in Switzerland. If he’s playing his best, it will be very hard to beat them. But we can disturb him, and they cannot win all the matches with him. There are 3 other points to take. Us, there is Sebastien, he will have returned, that will be good.

The French will almost be playing at home, since almost all of you live in Switzerland. It is a little odd, no? –
Yes, it is true. But I find it a shame that while living in France, the high level sportsmen are obliged to pay double the taxes: in the country where money was earned, and in France. Our careers do not last a long time. However, I like Switzerland, where I have an apartment with a very beautiful view, I like it a lot. After weeks of tournament and traveling, it is perfect to rest. One sees oneself between French regularly. I train in the Canton of Geneva, at the Tennis du Bois Carré. Camille likes it too. Frankly it is hard not to like it.
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Old 03-16-2004, 09:06 PM   #9
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oh thanks thanks irish !!!!!!!! i am sure there isn't any rust at all with your french

and what a cute 'little boy' this arnaud is !!!! love him
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Old 03-16-2004, 09:21 PM   #10
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oh irish. thanks a lot. what a very very very nice interview
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Old 03-17-2004, 08:24 PM   #11
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Nae wurries.
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Old 03-17-2004, 08:39 PM   #12
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Nice job, mate! Thanks so much for the translation!

What a sweet kid he is!
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Old 03-17-2004, 09:23 PM   #13
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*sigh* it's interviews like this that i really wish i had an arnaud website so that i could archive all the good stuff, and share with others.

(better not go in there again, or i will again be going around in circles with esther. lol......)
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Old 03-18-2004, 08:20 AM   #14
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oh sorry steph i totally forgot i was meant to get around to translatin that!!! but neway irish did a wonderful job!i!!! that must have taken AGES!!!

via- hmmm y dont we get started? like seirously can u just start formatting it or sth? (lol easy for me to say since i wouldnt have to do nething)
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Old 03-18-2004, 10:20 AM   #15
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Forever. But I wanted to translate it for myself, anyway. It only takes a little longer to type it as I go along. Thanks agian to Marine for typing it in the first place! It's the best interview I've read in a long time.
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