27th GERRY WEBER OPEN 2019 June 15th to 23rd 2019

GERRY WEBER TICKET CENTER +49 5201 81 80 Mon – Fri 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Sat 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Interview with Alejandro Falla

Congratulations to the week. This was your second final, your second loss. Still, how much confidence does it give you going into Wimbledon?
Alejandro Falla: I think there is no better way to start the grass court season than playing a lot of matches on a very high level. It’s a shame I couldn’t hold the title but still it was a very good final, very good level from Roger and I. I would have loved to win here but I’m going try to come back next year.
Can you maybe compare this match to the ones that you played against Roger before. It looked like you were very close to him?
Alejandro Falla: Yes, this was the fourth match on grass court. It’s true, they were very close, including this one. There was just one easy match in Halle four years ago. So, I think my game plan was the same as the other matches. We played very tough matches, very close. It could have gone either way even if it went to Roger’s side. So, I’m happy because of the level I played today. I was never in control of the game because I was coming from behind every time but a tiebreaker against is tough, his record is just amazing. I was playing very well the tiebreakers during the tournament. I won three or four tiebreaker. But overall it was a great week. I love this tournament. I enjoyed playing here so much and I’m going to make sure to come back.
I mean you know Roger from the games before but do you still use video analysis to prepare for these special matches?
Alejandro Falla: Yes, I watched a little bit of the Wimbledon match. Sometimes, I was expecting a match like we played today. I think the strategy doesn’t change much. I knew what to do, he knew what to do. The last match we played at the Olympics in London three years ago, I think he changed a couple of things on the strategy. But on my side, I just wanted to try the same, being aggressive, taking my chances, risking a little more when I had to do it. But he was serving well, he was changing paces and maybe that put me in trouble a little bit sometimes. But I played well, I was being aggressive when I had to do it. I served very good. I think there was a big difference, compared to the other matches I was serving very good and a high percentage during the whole week. That’s what I take from here and hopefully in Wimbledon I can take that from here.
You played a fantastic match. What would you like to improve for next year? What can we expect?
Alejandro Falla: Well, I can still improve some stuff, my second serve, my forehand. I had a few misses on the forehand today in moments I could have changed the match to my side. But, I played well, in all aspects I felt okay. I can still improve my game on the net. When I go to the net, I can still improve, I can still go more often. But I think, overall, everything was great.
How are the reactions back home? You reached the final here and that’s something new?
Alejandro Falla: Actually, that’s a shame because yesterday the Columbian soccer team won. So, I was like a part of everything (laughs). And today it’s the election for the president. So, everyone is just focussing on the presidential elections. So, it’s a shame because this is a great result playing Roger in the final. The people, who like sports still know a lot of tennis and what happened today but the country is just focussing on the presidential elections today.
Before you joined Roger on the bench. What was the topic of the discussion?
Alejandro Falla: He was asking me, what I was going to play next. I told him I will drive to s’Hertogenbosch tonight and play there. He asked me who I play there and I told him I’ll play Melzer in the first round. He was telling me he’s going to Wimbledon, he’s going to get some practice. He’s just a very nice guy, he’s an amazing player, he’s an inspiration for every tennis player and not just for the tennis but for the kind of person he is.
People usually tend to say that around thirty a player’s career is going down. Obviously, the last couple of year you proved that wrong: you are thirty and you’re at your best in your career. Also top 10, top 20 players are thirty and over. So, what do you think? Do you think this might have changed?
Alejandro Falla: I think the physical preparation is so important. If you’re healthy I think you always play better and better. You keep training, you keep learning some stuff every day. So, as long as you’re healthy you can play if you want and if you’re motivated and if you want it in your head you can play until thirty-five years old. So, that’s why I’m travelling with my physical trainer since last year because I want to last for so much time around the circuit. I think there is a lot of players over thirty winning titles and making big results. We saw Stepanek in the finals in Queens, Tommy Haas has a very record for his age. So, I think I can last some more.
Were you nervous at the beginning considering that was one of the first finals in that atmosphere in this stadium or was it more of a motivation?
Alejandro Falla: What I see when I play Roger is how people love him when he walks on the court. It’s just amazing how the crowd makes him feel. So, you feel that a little bit but when you start warming up … Maybe the first or second time when I played him I was more nervous. But now I’m kind of used to it because we’ve played a lot of times. So, it doesn’t make me nervous.
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