Tennis Prose



Richard Gasquet Biofile (2008)

By Scoop Malinowski

I did this Biofile with Richard in 2008 in the U.S. Open locker room.

Ht: 6-1 Wt:  165 pounds.

DOB: June 18, 1986 In: Beziers, France.

Childhood Hero: “Zidane from France, football, you know?”

Tennis Inspiration: “The pleasure of playing, to hit the ball. There is pleasure and joy hitting the beautiful strokes.”

Hobbies/Interests: “I like to be with friends in Paris. Because I am always in tournaments. And I like to be in Paris with my friends, to go out with them. To be in Paris to see my family. Sports I like football, rugby and golf.”

Favorite Film: “Gladiator.”

Musical Tastes: “I like everything in music, Coldplay.”

First Job: “No, just tennis.”

Early Tennis Memory: “My first tournament in ATP, it was in Monte Carlo (2002) and I won against (Franco) Squillari. My first ATP tournament. I was very surprised to be in the second round, to win him, he was 50 in the world. So it was incredible to me. I was 16 (actually 15 and 10 months). It was amazing.”

Favorite Meal: “I like pizza.”

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: “Vanilla.”

Pre-Match Feeling: “To do my best in every match. I don’t feel a lot of pressure. I want to do my best before every match and during the match. To have success it is necessary to think about nothing else but the tennis.”

Greatest Sports Moment: “So far, definitely winning three years ago in Monte Carlo, to win against number one in the world (Gasqueat beat Roger Federer, 6-7(1), 6-2, 7-6(8)). It was my best memory.”

Most Painful Moment: “Playing badly in front of large crowds. Ah, my worst — U.S. Open (2004), disqualification in qualies. It was my worst match.”

Favorite Tournament: “Roland Garros.”

Closest Tennis Friends: “All French players. All French – Monfils, Mathieu, all French players.”

Funniest Players Encountered: “Monfils is funny. Michael Llodra. Oh, he’s the funniest guy on the Tour, of course. He’s mad. He can do everything. In Key Biscayne he was nude in the locker [smiles]. He’s mad, really mad.”

Toughest Competitors: “I think Nadal, Federer, Safin, Hewitt, Roddick, the best players in the world.”

Embarrassing Tennis Memory: “Embarrassing? Nothing embarrassing. Everything good. Maybe when I play with my coach and I broke his  – he was at the net and I bruised him over the left eye. I hit a backhand off the top of the net and it went right into his face.”

Favorite Vacation Spot: “In Paris, and in south of France. I was born in south of France but now I live in Paris. On holiday I like to go in south of France.”

Favorite Athletes To Watch: “Technical players in soccer. Zidane. (Tennis?) Federer and Safin. (Boxing?) No. (Golf?) No. (Track and field?) Yeah, a little. But I prefer a game with a ball.”

People Qualities Most Admired: “Honesty, sincerity.”

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  • Scoop Malinowski · January 7, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Just ambled up to Richard in 2008 in the US Open locker room one afternoon and he did this Biofile. Spontaneous. Thought it came out very good.

  • Steve · January 7, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    Very cool!

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 7, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    How can anyone not like Gasquet, the guy is class, great player, never incites any shenanigans whatsoever, just a pure tennis player. One thing I’ve noticed though, at a few of his matches on US Open grandstand, his chair area during a long match is a total mess, racquets, towels, used socks, shorts, bottles strewn all over the place, wrappers, the messiest chair area of any player I’ve ever seen by far – and I do keep track )

  • Dan markowitz · January 7, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    It’s not a question of liking him or not, but the guy is one of the prime examples of the modern player who plays without emotion or passion. In this way, Gasquet is very Un-French-like. He might say he find tennis pleasureable. And he has a certain élan with his strokes, but he’s hard to get excited about. Even in this Bio-file, he comes across as a simpleton without much going on in his life or interior mind. This might make him a better player, but not particularly interesting.

  • Steve · January 7, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    Not all French are like Monfils & etc. I suspect Pioline was also not obnoxious.
    Gasquet seems like a down to Earth jock to me/rugby fan.

    Dan he’s into it these days. Yelling & fist pumping, you gotta get up to speed on this. He’s been like this for months.

  • Steve · January 7, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    Dan see 45 seconds in & Nadal-esque fist punch at 1:42 in:

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 7, 2013 at 8:52 pm

    I can’t believe Dan just called Gasquet a simpleton. )

  • Dan markowitz · January 7, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    Lets just say he’s not Albert Camus or John Paul Sarte. At the Knicks game and fou d out on March 6, the Garden has Nadal v JMDP and Serena v Vika. Hope to see you there, Scoop and maybe in Miami.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 8, 2013 at 7:29 am

    COuld see that exo turning into Roddick vs. Delpo, but hope Nadal is ready. Henk Abbink just told me Nadal’s return will be in Mexico Acupulco. Dan you have to remember French is Gasquet’s second language, and he’s a shy guy, but he still came across as intelligent, plus we did this Biofile five years ago. Gasquet, to become one of the world’s best at tennis, is most certainly a very intelligent person. No dummy gets to the top 10 in tennis today, just not possible.

  • Dan Markowitz · January 8, 2013 at 8:41 am

    I think you mean English is his second language. Look, I like Gasquet, always go to see him play. But he looks like an accountant out there. And even his fist pump was done in a kind of forceful, unhappy manner, there was no hopping around and turning to the crowd to acknowledge his victory. Look, some guys are just tight. Monfils, who Gasquet lists as one of his best friends, said Reeshard chokes in big matches. He’s not a guy who embraces the spotlight. And unfortunately, that’s what it takes if you want to be a champion.

  • Steve · January 8, 2013 at 9:06 am

    Dan, Monfils is talking about the Gasquet of years past. Players change. I remember a time when Djokovic seemed to have asthma issues every other match and now look at him.

    Does Nadal acknowledge the crowd or does he simply fist pump and look at his box? Did Sampras hop around and interact with the crowd?

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 8, 2013 at 9:17 am

    Players do change their court demeanor, everybody remembers Todd Martin’s US Open win from 2 sets down to Moya at US Open, Martin was a pacifist like Gasquet was but he took over the stadium like a wildman that night and shocked Moya. It’s conceivable that if Martin played his whole career like a wildman like he did that one match, with such external displays of fire and passion, it’s possible Todd could have won 5-7 majors ) Gasquet could be turning over a new leaf, I saw the highlights and he looks comfortable showing these emotions and fists and punching at the ground. Hopefully Gasquet can pump himself up and get more physical, like take up boxing and MMA training, just go hardcore and turn into like from Mr. Peabody to a new Rambo warrior beast for 2013.

  • Steve · January 8, 2013 at 10:39 am

    “turn into like from Mr. Peabody to a new Rambo warrior beast for 2013.” HAHAHAHA Let’s hope so.

    He actually looks like he plays a bit of rugby.

  • Dan Markowitz · January 8, 2013 at 11:17 am

    What one match, Steve, has Gasquet played in the last year that indicates he’s no longer a choker in a big match. Some guys don’t need to show a lot of emotion. Sampras was one of them, but at least he smiled once in a while. I never see Gasquet smile.

    Funny, I remember seeing Gasquet have to play qualis at the now men’s-defunct event in New Haven just a few years ago.

  • Steve · January 8, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    I’ve only seen him choke one time and it wasn’t on match point or anything.

    I think in the big matches he’s lost he was outplayed. No excuses.

  • Mitch · January 8, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    I didn’t watch the match, but seem to remember Gasquet blowing a big lead to Albert Ramos last year. ATP website says it happened at Indian Wells.

  • Dan Markowitz · January 8, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    Please, I’m all blog, tell me one big match Gasquet has one in a major or Davis Cup in 2012. And don’t tell me he beat Fernando Verdasco or somebody like that.

  • Steve · January 8, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    He defeated Murray in Rome & Tips in the AO so says wikipedia. Two top ten players right there.

  • Dan Markowitz · January 8, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    See, that’s what I expected. You give me somewhat major accomplishments, but no real major accomplishment. Beating Tips in Aussie or Murray in Rome are nice, but nothing major. I want to see Gasquet do something major, which he hasn’t since winning Monte Carlo.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 8, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    RG’s beaten Berd too. Fish. He’s got the goods to beat anybody, just needs to be a lil stronger and want it more. Get down and dirty. The talent is there, the iron will and insatiable hunger for winning/hatred of losing, could be the missing ingredient.

  • Steve · January 8, 2013 at 7:39 pm

    You will see that Dan. You should crack this story in a feature somewhere BEFORE it he wins something big. Call it: The Gasquet/Piatti Alliance.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 8, 2013 at 8:23 pm

    Call Gasquet a simpleton Dan but he utilized one of the smartest alibis to get out of his drug charge perhaps in the history of sports.

  • Dan Markowitz · January 8, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    What was his excuse? He was making out with a girl who was snorting coke? How creative a story is that? And, no, Scoop, Gasquet has as good a chance as Querrey in beating a top player in a slam, and that’s very slim. In fact, I’d give Querrey the edge.

  • Steve · January 9, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Gasquet has a winning record over current top ten players Berdych, Tsonga and Tipsarevic.

    He also has wins over Federer, Djoker, Murray and Delpo.

  • Steve · January 9, 2013 at 8:39 am

    In other news, I see D. Young is playing Blake in the AO Qualies. And Bradley Klahn is in there too!

  • Harold · January 10, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    He obviously has something of a personality worth talking about, because this might be the record for most comments off of a Biofile all-time on TP

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 10, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Haha Harold, you’re right, Biofiles usually get 2-3 comments max, sometimes, to my dismay, a bagel amount comments )



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