BARCLAYS ATP WORLD TOUR FINALS 2013
After Six-Year Absence, Gasquet Returns to Season Finale
by ATP Staff|
Frenchman Richard Gasquet qualified for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals with a strong season in 2013, making this his first appearance in the season finale since Shanghai in 2007. The World No. 10 had come close in 2012, qualifying as an alternate for the eight-man field. The 27 year old used that experience as motivation to make his return to the final event of the year.
“Last year I saw the wonderful stadium. It was full for the entire tournament,” said Gasquet in London. “It was important for me to qualify this year. It was my goal at the start of the season. I’m proud to be there with all these great players. I will try my best to play well.”
Gasquet opens up his campaign for nearly $2 million in championship prize money against Argentine Juan Martin del Potro on Monday. “It’s an exciting match for me to play my first match since Shanghai six years ago,” shared the 27-year-old native of Beziers, France. “Of course [del Potro] will be the favourite. I know he’s a great player but I will try to play well and win the match.”
The top French player, who earned titles in Doha, Montpellier, and Msocow and reached the semi-finals of the US Open this year, comes into the London tournament with a different mindset from his first experience as a 21 year old. “It was difficult for me, especially in France where the sport is very popular. No one had won a Grand Slam in almost 25 years. I had big expectations on my shoulders,” said Gasquet. “I’m really lucky to be able to come back here. And now I’m trying the best I can to be better in the rankings. I hope to qualify many times from now on and in the future.”
In the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals draw, Gasquet and del Potro share Group B with Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer. Group A comprises Rafael Nadal, David Ferrer, Tomas Berdych and Stanislas Wawrinka.