NEW YORK (Columbus Dispatch) — Gael Monfils follows his own rules.
The guy does things on a tennis court that no one else has — or can. Just search his name on YouTube and watch any of many video clips showcasing his speed and agility; start with the parallel-to-the-ground, a-few-feet-in-the-air dive at this year’s French Open.
He sips soda during breaks in his matches, raising the can in a toast to his agent.
He is currently without any coach at all, in an era when some players have two.
What Monfils has never done, despite all his talent — and in some cases, because he has appeared to value style over substance, such as preferring the spectacular shot over the sufficient — is reach a Grand Slam final. He took a step closer yesterday at the U.S. Open during a surprisingly matter-of-fact 7-5, 7-6 (6), 7-5 victory in the fourth round over No. 7-seeded Grigor Dimitrov.