The burst only lasted one set. The first before the rain break. Then, Benoît Paire reconnected with his demons of the moment when the game resumed to bow quite heavily to Quentin Halys (4-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4) for his entry into the running. During this 5th consecutive defeat (counting that at the Milan Challenger last week), the 15th already from the 1st round on the circuit this season, he never gave the feeling of being able to revolt. And for good reason, the main interested party did not want to, as he can no longer take pleasure in exercising his profession.
“I had a fairly short battery life. Thirty-five, forty minutes, on the first set. I must have played three and a half hours of tennis since Roland-Garros. I had just done two grass training sessions just before arriving. I knew it was going to be complicated. (…) I have a disgust for tennis. I see people for that. I felt the need, I reject this sport. It disgusts me when I go on the court. Lately, every time I set foot on it, I felt like running away, so there was no point in going there. That’s why since Roland-Garros, I really haven’t played much. When I find myself on a court, I have anxiety balls“, he confided in a press conference.
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For an exhibition at 60,000 euros, I come no matter what
Paire clarified the nature of the specialists he saw to try to reconnect with what was his passion: “a shrink and a hypnotist“. As for the prestige of Wimbledon, the “Temple of tennis”, was it likely to awaken the flame of the Avignonnais? Far from it, according to him. His relationship to his sport is currently so complicated that only financial considerations matter to him, especially when there are no more ATP points at stake.
“I knew that here, it was going to be a bit difficult exhibition but there was a little money to take and it could be good. There was a good check up for grabs in the second or third round. It’s just too bad for that. (…) Anyway, for an exhibition at 60,000 euros, frankly, I’m coming, whatever happens, even if I’m advised not to go. Above all, I talked a lot, I try to progress, to get rid of this thing, because I liked tennis before, I liked these moments of tension, being on a court, but now I’m really not very feel good about myself and i’m trying to get better“, he let go, without qualms.
Even if he seems at his wit’s end mentally, Paire has no intention of leaving the circuit as he had announced not so long ago. After a few days to recover, he plans to return to Challenger on clay after Wimbledon. Decidedly, the Avignonnais is not to a contradiction.
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