Gasquet on track for O2
Originally published on: 22/10/13 00:00
The Frenchman defeated Mikhail Kukushskin 4-6 6-4 6-4 on Sunday to lift the Kremlin Cup, his third title of the season, to move to ninth in the Race to London ahead of compatriot Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
With Andy Murray officially withdrawing from the year-end event at The O2 as he continues his recovery from back surgery, Gasquet is on the cusp of qualifying for the season finale for the first time since 2007.
A fixture in the Top 10 this year for the first time since June 2008, Gasquet is close to reaching 50 match wins for the first time in his career. An impressive US Open campaign saw him defeat Milos Raonic and David Ferrer in two gruelling five-set matches before falling to eventual champion Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals.
"I've worked a lot this year, especially physically,” Gasquet said. “It's important to do that because the season is very long, so you need to be strong physically. The improvement showed at the US Open, playing in the big matches in a row. That's why I'm playing better and in the Top 10 now. I will try to keep going and keep this position. It's difficult. A lot of guys are playing well.
"I took big confidence from the US Open because I beat big guys in five sets, two in a row. So, for sure I took a lot of confidence after this tournament. It's very difficult to say if I am better now [than in 2007]. I think so. I'm better physically and have more experience than before.”
“I want to reach the [finals],” added Gasquet, who is in action at the Swiss Indoors Basel this week. “I will try to go. It's difficult; there are a lot of players who can qualify so we'll see what will happen. I'll try my best until the end of the season and the best players will go there.”