WATCH: Tennis Channel Live: Australian Open Day 5


The Gael Monfils Renaissance continues. One year after his heartbreaking first-round exit from the Australian Open, the Frenchman is back and looking better than ever.

Last year, Monfils extended a long slump that began back in 2020 when he was upset by Emil Ruusuvuori in five sets. “I would like to get out of this nightmare, but I can’t,” he said between tears.

What a difference a year makes.

Coming into Melbourne this time around, Monfils was riding high and full of confidence after clinching his 11th career title in Adelaide. The 35-year-old has made quick work of his early competition, dropping a 6-1, 6-1, 6-3 score on Federico Coria and easing past Alexander Bublik 6-1, 6-0, 6-4.

His biggest test of the tournament came against No. 16 seed Cristian Garin of Chile. Garin went toe-to-toe with Monfils during the first set, recovering from a break deficit and eventually leading the tiebreak 4/1. But Monfils stayed with him, and he charged through in straight sets to win 7-6(4), 6-1, 6-3.

“To be honest I tried to not even remember last year. I just can say that I'm here, I'm good. I feel good, as I say,” Monfils said afterward. “I worked a lot hard, and just been playing great tennis for many months now since America last year. So I'm just me.”

The No. 17th-seeded Frenchman will be looking for his first Grand Slam quarterfinal since 2019 when he takes on Miomir Kecmanovic next.