WATCH: Match highlights as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga falls to Marin Cilic in the 2022 ATP Monte Carlo first round.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who plans to retire following the French Open, is still taking the same approach he usually does when playing tournaments.

The former No. 5 dropped his Monte Carlo opener 6-2, 6-2 to Marin Cilic, and is 2-5 in tour-level events this season. But having cited physical problems for his decision to retire at almost 37, he's happy to be now relatively injury-free and in good form.

"The first feeling, it's disappointment," Tsonga told press in Monte Carlo. ''Of all I've done in recent months, weeks, this is where I felt the best with my tennis.

"Disappointment to have such a strong opponent, disappointment not to be able to defend my chances a little better.

"But I'm thankful for the organization of the tournament, which gave me a wild card and allowed me this experience."

Now ranked No. 254, Tsonga will need—and receive—another wild card for the French Open, but won't be going into the tournament any differently.


"I want to function the way I've always functioned. I want to prepare for the tournaments, I want to be competitive," he said.

Tsonga, a finalist at the 2008 Australian Open, has scored wins against all the top players with his powerful attacking game but also experienced frequent injuries.

In an interview with the ATP this week, he spoke of now playing with the same freedom he did when first starting on tour.

"I want to finish my career like I started," he said. "It's a new opportunity for me to give [my] best on court.

"I had many injuries, my body felt really sore... but now I'm feeling better."

Tsonga, who peaked at world No. 5 in 2012, has won 18 titles in his career.