Gael Monfils has had an impressive start to the 2022 season. The Frenchman has seen the first few tournaments go really well.
Gael Monfils impressive start to the season
Monfils entered the first ATP event of the season in Adelaide. The Frenchman was the top seed in the event. Monfils drew Juan Manuel Cerúndolo in the first round. The Argentine struggled to get into the match, whilst the top seed broke easily and took the match in straight sets.
Next up was sixth seed Tommy Paul. The American pushed Monfils in the first set, before the Frenchman finally got a handle on the set and broke the serve of Paul. Monfils then cruised through the second set to make the semi final without dropping a set so far.
Thansi Kokkinakis proved a tough opponent in the semi final first set. The Austrlian and home favourite pushed Monfils all the way. However, the top seed broke through to take the lead. Monfils was unstoppable in the second set. The Frenchman sped through the second without losing a game booking a spot in the final.
Karen Khachanov was the opponent in the final. The second seeded Russian was a good test for the top seed. Monfils managed to break in both sets to take the match and win his 11th title without dropping a set. Although he then had to withdraw from the second Adelaide event in the first round match, the score was one set all at the time.
Monfils went into the Australian Open as the 17th seed. The Frenchman had already had success and was looking to build on this. Melbourne had never really been a good hunting ground for Monfils, usually going out early in the tournament. Slowly, the 17th seed carved his way through the field. Cristian Garin was the first seeded player he met. Garin stayed with Monfils and forced a tiebreak first set, however the Frenchman edged through the breaker and then stormed through to the fourth round.
Monfils eased through to the quarter final and the match was an epic. Facing seventh seed Matteo Berrettini the Frenchman went two sets down. However, never write off Monfils. The 17th seed pulled back the next two sets and levelled up the match to take it to a final set showdown. The Italian took the set and moved through to the semi final. However, the Frenchman had equalled his best finishing place in Melbourne.
Monfils is one of the most consistent players on the tour. However, last season had been a tough one for the Frenchman. After winning the title in Adelaide, in his post match speech, he thanked his wife Elina Svitolina for being there and encouraging him.
“It was a really really tough last year for me. Almost- not want to quit- but I lost a bit of faith in tennis and everything and she was there, always caring. So thank you Elina, thank you for everything!”
Monfils could be one to watch this year as a potential dark horse for titles. Monfils has had an impressive start to the season, long may it continue