Gael Monfils - Indian Wells 2022

Gael Monfils ‘tired of incessant controversies’ after Auger-Aliassime Laver Cup incident

Gael Monfils has hit back at claims that he was not taking the Laver Cup seriously, following an incident with Team World member Felix Auger-Aliassime.

Monfils was making his debut at the Laver Cup this year as part of Team Europe, who were convincingly beaten 13-2 by Team World lead by John McEnroe.

The Frenchman competed in one singles match and one doubles match, losing both in straight sets, but it was his singles contest with Auger-Aliassime that got people talking.

During a change of ends Auger-Aliassime complained that Monfils was taking too long between points, suggesting that the exhibition tournament should be played by the same rules as ATP events.

Auger-Aliassime told the chair umpire, “I can play games too,” resulting in Monfils going over to speak to his Canadian opponent.

Later on in the match, Monfils told his European teammates sat on the bench, “They called me and said ‘You can be free’. For me, I’m here to have fun.”

This comment caused some people to claim that Monfils was not taking the competition seriously enough following the, 4-6 3-6, defeat.

However, Gael Monfils has strongly refuted these claims on social media, “I am tired of these incessant and futile controversies. Some people seem to get excited over trifles. I am annoyed by those who make hasty judgments. Some might think that because I smile and have fun, I’m not serious.

“Sure, my vision may be different, but I always strive to follow the guidelines given to me. At 37, I just try to make the most of every moment. When I was asked to participate in the Laver Cup, I was honored. With my current ranking, outside the top 100 at this age, I even thought it was a joke.”

He continued, “But I take this opportunity very seriously, for the event, for my team and especially for me. Traveling to Vancouver and leaving my family again is not the easiest thing. But, despite everything, I continue to practice my profession with passion and sincerity, as I have always done.

“And, without tongue in cheek, I must admit that I am very well paid for this and that the conditions are exceptional. I know, some will say that I have accomplished nothing, that I am a clown… But the truth is that I am happy and fulfilled. I want to say that the Laver Cup is a fantastic event.”

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.