Alix Collombon et Jessica Ginier, the last French representatives in Doha, qualified yesterday for the second round of the Ooredoo Qatar Major, facing a guest pair : Al Nabhani / Gallo Frias.

Thanks to their victory, the French women offer themselves a prestigious match against the brand new pair Gemma Triay / Claudia fernandez (TS3). We meet them, a few hours before their match, to take the temperature a little before this meeting.

Their first meeting in Doha

Alice: “We had a good start with a little success in the draw. We took advantage of it and had a very serious match. We were favorites so we went for victory.

Above all, we went for this meeting, which we wanted to play, against Gemma Triay and Claudia Fernandez. I hope it will be a nice and hooked match…For us but also for the French who will follow us.

I am very satisfied to be in the second round and to be able to play again with my Jess. It's a bit comeback, it's very nice. We are very happy to meet again, to play together again and to enjoy. We want to have fun and that’s important to us."

Jessica Ginier, already in the final table of a Major in 2024

Jessica: "I was lucky that Alix asked me to play with her. I'm really happy to be by her side and she knows how much I love sharing the track with her. It’s been 5-6 years since we last played together and it’s true that it was a first round.”easy enough".

I was torn because I would have liked to have had a slightly tougher first match to be able to enter the tournament well, with a pair with a “best level of play“. But that's part of the sport too, we were lucky in the draw and you also need to know how to seize opportunities. For me, it's a huge chance to take these points and to be in this place.

Now, we will have a good match against the Triay/Fernandez pair. Those who know us know that we enter the field to win and that we are not afraid of anything. We will do our best and we will see the result…

Just to add, I'm very happy to be here. I would never have thought, at the start of the year, that I would participate in the Qatar tournament and I want to take full advantage of Alix’s proposal.”

Preparing for the second round

Alice: "It was difficult to put things in place yesterday…Afterwards, Angél, the coach who will be with us on the bench today, was already able to see Jess's level. He didn't know her so he was able to discover her qualities and faults. We will start with a tactic based on our qualities and especially the qualities of Jessica.

We know that this is Claudia's first tournament with Gemma. We also know that she is a great player, very talented and with a very big future... But we don't know what could happen, it can be overtaken by emotion. So we're going to try, a little, to play on his nerves. There is quite a bit of wind, the conditions are not easy so it is perhaps better for us because we know that when the conditions are complicated, it levels out a little.

Our goal is to start the match well and make them doubt. The start will be important. Concerning Gemma, we are not going to make her a “fridge” because it is very hard at that level but we are going to look for Claudia a little more, obviously.

We'll see how things evolve. Lots of things can happen in a match, with the conditions, the way we feel on the ground. So yes, we have a little tactic and now, All you have to do is go running."

Wild cards in the final tables

Jessica: “We are mixed about polemic on Wild cards. It's true that a match like yesterday is not great for the public. NOW, These are players who are deserving because we realize that Fatma Al Nabhani, who comes from Oman, is a player of padel who wins quite a few FIPs in the surrounding area. SO she is rewarded for her results.

After, if there aren't many people in the country, it's not the host country's fault. So it's a bit complicated. But, it's true, that in terms of level, it's limited to have a place in a Grand Chelem like that because we know that there are only very good players.”

Alice: "This is a very complicated and complex subject.. Why would we give Wild cards in Italy, Spain or France to local players and why wouldn't we do it in Qatar? It's a very complicated subject...

Afterwards, yes, perhaps you would have to be in the Top p200 to have a Wild card in the table. I think giving two wild cards in a major is a bit too much. Maybe in these tournaments, we only need one. Especially since one of the invitations was for them, and the other for a Spanish pair. Is it normal for a Spanish pair to have a Wild card in Qatar ? Personally, I don't find it.

There are pros and cons. We know that le padel needs to grow and become fully international. Giving invitations to players from the country helps with that too. It’s a debate that we will have every year… It’s complicated to have a clear opinion on this subject.”

We will find Jessica Ginier and Alix Collombon today, in the second rotation of the day, on the central track of the Qatar Major. The match will be followed on the YouTube channel of Premier Padel.

Gwenaelle Souyri

It was his brother who one day told him to accompany him on a track. padel, since then, Gwenaëlle has never left the court. Except when it comes to going to watch the broadcast of Padel Magazine, World Padel Tour… or Premier Padel…or the French Championships. In short, she is a fan of this sport.