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Monfils explains shot of UTS Frankfurt: “It feels unreal, but to be honest it was a super-lucky shot”

The Frenchman’s shot against Andrey Rublev won him the Zenith best shot award at UTS Frankfurt

Monfils super slap Tennis Majors/UTS

Gael Monfils is well used to hitting some of the most incredible shots but usually that just results in a video to watch again and again. At UTS Frankfurt, though, the Frenchman hit the shot of the tournament – a phenomenal return of serve – and won a prize for it.

As the showman explained to Tennis Majors how it came about it, what he was thinking, and what he felt about it, he was stopped by fans thanking him for his incredible ability and his phone was pinging with friends and family congratulating him on what was a remarkable shot.

Here is a Q&A with Monfils about the shot of the tournament:

What was going through your head as you hit the return?
That’s a great question. Because even myself…of course, I’m going for the big slap down the line, because it was a real slap. I didn’t expect to have such a great ball actually to release this kind of power. And then, I have to be really honest, this is a super lucky shot. You know, it’s a super lucky shot, but it feels unreal because it was just a rocket to be honest.

You knew you could do it, though? You practised it?
I know I can do it. I know I can do it. I knew that it was the space to do it. If I had the perfect ball I could try to do it. But it’s always risky, you know, because you have one try and somehow, I went for my luck and I did well and I was happy about it.

How would you name it?
It’s a slap, honestly it’s a slap. A slap shot.

What is so good about it?
To be honest, it’s just a slap and release of power and control at the same time, you know. I think that’s the beauty of the shot; it is a lot of power, but a lot of control because it can end up anywhere. Yeah, it’s a controlled slap.

In UTS, are you maybe more creative than usual?
Yeah 100%, you know, with this type of court, of course, you can go around the net even with more spin. Sometimes, you can think to do it even more because, you know, when the guy plays so much angle, you don’t have to worry so much because you know you have this room allows you to try those type of shots.

And then you have the thrill of the crowd, right? What do you feel when you see how everyone reacts?
First, the feeling to hit the slap that good was unreal. And then the reaction of the crowd was incredible. Like a fire, people were, like, amazed. And I was amazed. Everybody was amazed. Unreal. I felt unreal. I felt like so blessed. And it’s a lot of love, you know, you receive a lot of love. And that was an incredible moment.

How good is it to have a prize for a great shot?
It’s always great. It’s always great to have a prize for that. I’m part of player who loves creativity. And then, of course, you know, you are quite happy when you know, you are recognized and of course receive a prize for it. So I’m just happy and blessed that I had that shot.

And I guess there are so many reactions on social media, from your friends and family? Can you give us a few examples?
Even right now, on my phone, I have like my best friend, he asked me how, you know how? Really important, kids, don’t try this at home, it’s really important.

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