Monfils’ Resurgence: A Victory for the Veteran

Gaël Monfils is finally settled. After a gloomy start to this 2024 season, the veteran returned to his tennis this week in Qatar where he finally put everything together, tennis-wise and physically. Thursday evening, La Monf’ offered himself a prestigious victory – given his current form – against his compatriot and French n°1 Ugo Humbert in the quarter-final of the ATP 250 in Doha.

Facing the man in form among the Blues at the start of the year, Monfils scored a great success in two sets (6-2, 6-4) which will, perhaps, be the starting point of something . Qualified for the semi-finals for the first time this season, the 68th in the world will challenge the Czech Jakub Mensik for a place in the final on Friday. A novice at this level, Mensik will still be dangerous, having beaten Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, Andy Murray and Andrey Rublev this week.

Mensik made Rublev go crazy: highlights of his victory

Humbert was not there

There was little suspense in this last quarter of the day in Doha. Starting like a rocket, Monfils broke his opponent from the start, before losing his commitment in the process, suggesting the start of a fight between the two Tricolores. But the aggressiveness of the older of the two made the difference. At 1-1, Monfils played four games together to lead 5-1. Humbert stopped the bleeding, but he logically lost the first set (6-2).

The second round was similar to the first. Completely disorganized, in difficulty serving, Humbert conceded an entry break. Then, on the verge of collapse, he made fewer mistakes and made Monfils play a few rallies. At 3-2 for the latter, Jérémy Chardy’s protégé broke.

However, at 3-3, while Monfils was starting to tire of the prolonged exchanges, the left-hander started distributing gifts again. A direct error and two others caused gave Gaël another break point. Coming to the net to save this one (at 30/40), Humbert cracked again. With another break in his pocket, Monfils raced towards victory. This is undoubtedly his benchmark match at the start of the season.

The handshake between Gaël Monfils and Ugo Humbert, after the quarter-final of the ATP 250 in Doha won by “La Monf

Credit: Getty Images

2024-02-22 18:52:00
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