He huffed and puffed but Jo-Wilfried Tsonga said the finish line was too far as he narrowly lost out to Andy Murray in the Wimbledon quarter-finals.
Tsonga was brave on Centre Court on Wednesday, rallying from two sets down to stun Murray before eventually succumbing 7-6 (12-10) 6-1 3-6 4-6 6-1.
A two-time semi-finalist at the All England Club, Tsonga said afterwards: "The finish line was far tonight. I came back strong on the third and fourth, but I didn't play well in the fifth.
"Andy was a little better than me on this last set.
"Like I said, the finish line was far."
After forcing a deciding fifth set at SW19, Tsonga seemingly ran out of steam, gifting Murray a double-break lead as he netted a forehand.
And it proved a bridge too far for Tsonga, with the Frenchman adding: "I think he had the opportunity to break me, and he did it.
"Then he was a little bit more aggressive and relaxed. He did it twice, and then it was tough to come back in this set."