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Paul-Henri Mathieu… and his watches

Le 24 April 2013

A few weeks before Roland Garros which starts on May 21, we met one of the jewels of the French court: Paul-Henri Mathieu. Together with our journalist and friend Hervé Borne* (text) we met him to talk about tennis – obviously – but not only… We deliver you today this exclusive interview, illustrated with some pictures of Paul-Henri equipped with 2 Longines watches of our choice… Obviously.

Paul-Henri welcomes us in the bleachers of Court No. 1, where he won the junior tournament in 2000. He seems serene and especially at his best form after an immobilization of more than two years after a knee operation.

Besides, he has all the reasons for this, clay court is his favorite surface, by dint of daily gym sessions, his legs are like new and he wears a very nice watch… A steel Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Squadra on a black rubber strap.

What to initiate a “watchmaking” chat…

Paul-Henri Mathieu and his Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Squadra

Hervé Borne – Obviously you love watches?

Paul Henri Mathieu – I like watches, it’s true, that said, you must be told that often, but this is the only jewelry a man can wear. I usually offer myself a watch at the end of each season, unfortunately, lately I haven’t played, so no watches! (laughs).

H.B – What kind of watches do you prefer?

P.H.M – It’s fun but very attracted by both vintage and sports watches. I also like the concept of having a limited edition one.

H.B – What type of watches do you have in your collection?

P.H.M – There are those that I have offered to myself and those that I’ve been offered. Endowments of tournaments: a Chopard Mille Miglia in Gstaad, a Van der Bauwede in Moscow, this sublime 1955 vintage Vacheron Constantin offered by my wife for my 30th birthday. Concerning the gifts I’ve made to myself: a steel Rolex Daytona that someone robbed me but which I repurchased! Another Rolex, a Milgauss with the green glass. An amazing Ebel 1911, I don’t understand why Ebel has nearly completely left the circuit! A Panerai equipped with the 8 days movement, A Louis Erard and yes, of course, this one! (He raises his arm to show us his Reverso Squadra)

Paul-Henri Mathieu wearing a Longines Heritage 1954 (Suzanne Lenglen court – Roland Garros)

Focus on Longines Longines Heritage 1954 –  Automatic chronograph (1340 €)

H.B – Mechanical or quartz?

P.H.M – Mechanical, exclusively, with manual or automatic winding…

H.B – Do you wear all your watches?

P.H.M – Yes absolutely, I have all of them at home, in a safe of course. I wear them everywhere, during my training, sometimes, but also on a golf course, with a T-shirt and jeans…

H.B – Do you think that the watches are fashion accessories?

P.H.M – No, they go further than this… My experience with fashion ends at photo shoots for magazines and for the Hermes fashion show I attended this year. It is very nice but watches are not mere accessories, quite the contrary. Their complexity is impressive, the work of the watchmaker is beautiful.

H.B – Would you be excited to become a brand ambassador?

P.H.M – Yes, why not, but only if I like the brand and its models, just as it is the case for my other sponsors. No way to wear Wilson head to toe if I wouldn’t like this brand…

Paul-Henri Mathieu wearing a Longines Longines Conquest Classic (Suzanne Lenglen court – Roland Garros)

Focus on Longines Conquest Classic – Pink gold automatic chronograph  (2013 release)

H.B – Would you be able to wear a watch while playing?

P.H.M – Yes, I think so, but I shouldn’t be asked to hit the ball softer pretexting not to break il!

H.B – What will be your next purchase?

P.H.M – Let’s be crazy! A Rose gold Daytona which is the only full gold watch that I find elegant. Otherwise, a diving watch, for the holidays, certainly the new cermet Deep Sea Chronograph by Jaeger-LeCoultre and a beautiful box to carry them…

H.B – What will you do with all these watches?

P.H.M – I buy them all to offer them one day to my son…

Focus on Longines Conquest Classic – Pink gold automatic chronograph  (2013 release)

*French journalist specialized in watchmaking, the industry has no secrets for him. Grand Reporter for Montres Magazine, it is to him that we owe watchmaking subjects published in the “M” the magazine of the “Monde”, the JDD, Monsieur…