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Rediff.com  » Sports » Hopman Cup: Gasquet helps France to advance to final

Hopman Cup: Gasquet helps France to advance to final

January 05, 2012 16:01 IST

Richard Gasquet maintained his unbeaten record to help guide France into the Hopman Cup final on Thursday before vowing to adopt a more attacking approach in a bid to shake up the established order in men's tennis.

Gasquet eased to a 6-2, 6-4 win over Spain's Fernando Verdasco shortly after Marion Bartoli had got the French ball rolling with an identical scoreline victory over Anabel Medina Garrigues in the singles matches of the mixed-team event tie.

Richard GasquetThe mixed doubles was not played because the French had already done enough to win Group B.

Gasquet is well known for being a flair player with arguably the best backhand in world tennis. The 25-year-old has also shown glimpses of brilliance to match the top players in the rankings but never peaked long enough to win a major title.

Hoping to become a more consistent force in the future, the World No. 19 has pinpointed how and where he needs to change his strategy if he is to have any chance of making a breakthrough in the grand slam events.

"There are too many times in matches when I don't attack," Gasquet said.

"Sometimes it is in my nature to sit back and wait for an error from the guy I'm playing," he added.

"When the big moments come, I need to have the confidence to do what Roger (Federer), Novak (Djokovic) and Rafa (Nadal) do... they attack.

"I am getting there. To beat Fernando is a big step in the right direction, he's one of the best players in the world."

Gasquet claimed wins over Australia's Lleyton Hewitt and China's Wu Di in the group stage and his team-mate Bartoli is also shaping up to be a serious contender for the Australian Open in Melbourne with some encouraging performances.

The World No. 9 lost to China's Li Na in her opening match but has since recovered to defeat Australia's Jarmila Gajdosova 6-0, 6-0 and dominated Garrigues, the wins helping to vindicate her decision to train in Perth ahead of the event.

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